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What Causes Increased Ldl Cholesterol

What Is High Ldl

What is LDL cholesterol – what is HDL Cholesterol – Causes of high Cholesterol – Treatment

Cholesterol itself is a necessary substance in the body. Its manufactured in your liver and it can be present in certain foods, especially meats, eggs, and dairy. LDL is a lipoproteina substance that conveys cholesterol to cells, aiding in maintaining cell structure, and serving as a precursor for substances vital to human function. Everyone has some amount of this lipoprotein, but problems arise when these are elevated.

When there is an excess of LDL, plaques build up in the arteries, causing atherosclerosis and reducing blood flow. When your hearts arteries are affected, insufficient oxygen levels damage cardiac muscles and cause CAD, angina , and even heart attack. Further, arteries in other parts of the body can also be affected, leading to peripheral artery disease and stroke.

Make The Changes Worth Making

If you have high blood cholesterol, making lifestyle changes is a great first step to lower your risk of heart disease. If those steps dont reduce your risk enough, your doctor may prescribe medications to help.

Remember: Making even modest changes now can help to prevent significant medical issues later. Do all you can to reduce your risk for the serious effects of heart attack and stroke.

Triglycerides In Your Blood

In addition to cholesterol, your blood also contains a type of fat called triglycerides, which are stored in your bodys fat deposits. Hormones release triglycerides to make energy between meals.;

When you eat, your body converts any extra energy it doesnt need right away into triglycerides.

Like cholesterol, your body needs triglycerides to work properly. However, there is evidence to suggest that some people with high triglycerides are at increased risk of heart disease and stroke.;

If you regularly eat more energy than you need, you may have high triglycerides .;

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Symptoms Of High Cholesterol

Often, there are no specific symptoms of high cholesterol. You could have high cholesterol and not know it.

If you have high cholesterol, your body may store the extra cholesterol in your arteries. These are blood vessels that carry blood from your heart to the rest of your body. A buildup of cholesterol in your arteries is known as plaque. Over time, plaque can become hard and make your arteries narrow. Large deposits of plaque can completely block an artery. Cholesterol plaques can also break apart, leading to formation of a blood clot that blocks the flow of blood.

A blocked artery to the heart can cause a heart attack. A blocked artery to your brain can cause a stroke.

Many people dont discover that they have high cholesterol until they suffer one of these life-threatening events. Some people find out through routine check-ups that include blood tests.

What Causes High Ldl

8 High Cholesterol Causes
Simon Lam

Simon has been an online writer for over six years. He has a Graduate degree in life science and writes frequently about health topics

Its important to know what causes high LDL or bad cholesterol. Knowing what increases LDL levels and eliminating these cholesterol-raising factors can prevent LDL numbers from climbing and thereby help maintain good health. Here are the culprits that can raise LDL cholesterol, and as a result, increase the risk of heart disease.

Eggs

Free Digital Photos

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How Is High Cholesterol Diagnosed

You cant tell if you have high cholesterol without having it checked. A simple blood test will reveal your cholesterol level.

Men 35 years of age and older and women 45 years of age and older should have their cholesterol checked. Men and women 20 years of age and older who have;risk factors for heart disease;should have their cholesterol checked. Teens may need to be checked if they are taking certain medicines or have a strong family history of high cholesterol. Ask your doctor how often you should have your cholesterol checked.

Risk factors for heart disease include:

  • Cigarette smoking.
  • Having an immediate family member who has had heart disease.
  • Being overweight or obese.
  • Inactivity.

What Makes Ldl Cholesterol Too High

A range of medical and lifestyle factors cause high LDL, including:

  • Diet: Diets high in saturated fats, salts, and cholesterol and low in healthy proteins and fiber can lead to high LDL.
  • Lack of physical activity: Not getting enough exercise and being sedentary contributes to weight gain and can also push levels up. You may see higher LDL if you don’t get a minimum of 30 minutes a day of activity.
  • Weight status: Being overweight or obese greatly increases the chances of developing high LDL. Even modest gains in weight can push levels to unhealthy ranges.
  • Alcohol and tobacco: Smoking and drinking are both associated with high cholesterol, among many other detrimental effects on health.
  • Genetics: High LDL can be inherited, a condition called familial hypercholesterolemia . The severity of FH ranges, but those with the homozygous formin which both parents are carriers of the faulty genemay have extremely high amounts of this type of cholesterol.
  • Medications: Taking several classes of drugs can lead to spikes in LDL. These include those for heart disease, high blood pressure, inflammation, certain viruses, and seizures, among other conditions. Talk to your doctor about how these prescriptions may impact cholesterol.
  • Health conditions: Diseases and conditions that cause high LDL include type 2 diabetes, pregnancy, chronic kidney disease, and hypothyroidism.

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Ways To Control Cholesterol

Cholesterol is a good friend of ours, but sometimes it takes a surge and starts to cause trouble. Sometimes the level of cholesterol is so high that it becomes a risk to our health. That’s why we should understand how to control cholesterol.

The first thing you need to know is that cholesterol is not only harmful to the heart but to other organs as well like it can cause problems with memory, reduce attention, high blood pressure, diabetes, cardiovascular disease as well as hair loss. If you are experiencing hair loss, then you should know that all these problems might be connected with increased cholesterol.

A healthy diet can help you control cholesterol. Avoid foods rich in trans fats, saturated fats and sodium.

Niacin is helpful for controlling cholesterol. It helps blood circulation and reduces blood clots.;

Biotin also reduces the concentration of bad cholesterol in the body and prevents heart disease. Vitamin C reduces heart attacks and strokes, prevents blood clots and strengthens blood vessels.

Does Alcohol Cause High Cholesterol

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Drinking alcohol and increased cholesterol levels are essentially connected.;According to a Japanese study conducted by the Japans Hyogo College of Medicine, even occasional heavy drinking can significantly boost the levels of blood cholesterol.

The study concluded that both occasional heavy drinkers and;regular heavy drinkers;have higher cholesterol, triglyceride, and overall blood-borne fat-related risks than nondrinkers.

So, does that mean you can drink in moderation? The answer is an emphatic No. Check this out.

Although 30 ml of alcohol consumption increase your HDL, it also simultaneously raises your triglyceride levels, thereby increasing your heart risk.

Again, the American heart association recommends that beginning to drink alcohol can increase the risk of addiction.

Secondly, alcoholism leads to a damaged liver, which then cannot metabolize the saturated fats from the diet and the;cholesterol that the body produces. This leads to cholesterol buildup in the blood.

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How Can I Lower My Cholesterol Level

The first step in reducing your cholesterol is to maintain a healthy, balanced diet. It’s important to keep your diet low in fatty food.

You can swap food containing saturated fat for fruit, vegetables and wholegrain cereals. This will also help;prevent high cholesterol returning.

Other lifestyle changes, such as;taking regular exercise and;giving up smoking, can also make a big difference in helping to lower your cholesterol.

If these measures don’t reduce your cholesterol and you continue to have a high risk of developing heart disease, your GP may prescribe a cholesterol-lowering medication, such as statins.

Your GP will take into account the risk of any side effects from statins. The benefit of lowering your cholesterol must outweigh any risks.

Read more about how high cholesterol is treated

Common Causes Of High Cholesterol And What To Do About Them

High cholesterol, a well-known health condition among Americans, is on the decline but remains a threat. The percentage of U.S. adults suffering from high cholesterol dropped by an impressive 6% between 2000 and 2016, from 18.3% down to just 12%. This is a step in a positive direction, but higher-than-recommended cholesterol is still a serious condition and prevention depends on a thorough understanding of its causes. High cholesterol is a key risk factor for heart disease and remains the leading cause of death in the United States.

High cholesterol is largely governed by lifestyle factors like diet, exercise, and smoking and that means its both treatable and preventable. The following list will explore the five most common causes of high cholesterol and the best ways to achieve healthy levels.

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How Sugar Really Affects Your Cholesterol

If youre like most people, you probably think its high-cholesterol foods like eggs or shrimp that are the worst for your cholesterol levels. But thats not really the case.

Because its not actually the cholesterol in food thats the problem. Most of the cholesterol that circulates inside our bodies is made inside our bodies, and not absorbed from the diet. So, its not about avoiding foods that naturally contain cholesterol, its about avoiding foods that prompt our bodies to create cholesterol.

The most powerful driver of cholesterol production?

Believe it or not, its sugar!

When I say sugar, I mean added sugars and simple carbohydrates that can be rapidly turned into sugar within our bodies. Think not only sweets , but other foods containing or made from refined grains like white rice, breads, bagels and pasta.

All carbohydrates are absorbed as sugar. And when blood sugar levels go up , the body responds by releasing insulin. Insulin is a vital hormone that makes sure sugar is stored in our bodies for use between meals. But it doesnt just cause sugar to be stored. It shifts our bodies into storage mode in general.

Triglycerides A Different Type Of Lipid

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Triglycerides are another type of lipid. Theyre different from cholesterol. While your body uses cholesterol to build cells and certain hormones, it uses triglycerides as a source of energy.

When you eat more calories than your body can use right away, it converts those calories into triglycerides. It stores triglycerides in your fat cells. It also uses lipoproteins to circulate triglycerides through your bloodstream.

If you regularly eat more calories than your body can use, your triglyceride levels can get high. This may raise your risk of several health problems, including heart disease and stroke.

Your doctor can use a simple blood test to measure your triglyceride level, as well as your cholesterol levels. Learn how to get your triglyceride level tested.

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What Causes High Cholesterol

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Cholesterol is both good and bad. At normal levels, it is an essential substance for the body. However, if concentrations in the blood get too high, it becomes a silent danger that puts people at risk of heart attack.

Cholesterol is present in every cell of the body and has important natural functions when it comes to digesting foods, producing hormones, and generating vitamin D. The body produces it, but people also consume it in food. It is waxy and fat-like in appearance.

There are two types of cholesterol:

  • low-density lipoproteins , or bad cholesterol
  • high-density lipoproteins , or good cholesterol

In this article, we will explain the role of cholesterol. We will also discuss the causes of high cholesterol, and its symptoms, treatment, and prevention.

What Other Medications Treat High Cholesterol

Bile acid sequestrants: These drugs bind with cholesterol-containing bile acids in the intestines and allow them to be eliminated in the stool. Bile acid sequestrants may lower LDL cholesterol by a significant amount. Bile acid sequestrants are sometimes prescribed with a statin to enhance cholesterol reduction.

  • Cholestyramine , colestipol , and colesevelam are the three bile acid sequestrants currently available. These three drugs are available as powders or tablets and are not absorbed from the gastrointestinal tract.
  • Bile acid sequestrant powders must be mixed with water or fruit juice and are taken once or twice daily with meals. Tablets must be taken with large amounts of fluids to avoid stomach and intestinal complaints including constipation, bloating, nausea, and gas.

Cholesterol absorption inhibitors: These drugs inhibit cholesterol absorption in the gut and has few, if any, side effects. Cholesterol absorption inhibitors may be rarely associated with tongue swelling . Ezetimibe reduces LDL cholesterol by a significant amount. It is probably most useful in people who cannot tolerate taking statins. When used in addition to a statin, ezetimibe is equivalent to doubling or tripling the statin dose.

Nicotinic acid or niacin: Nicotinic acid lowers total cholesterol, LDL cholesterol, and triglyceride levels while raising HDL cholesterol levels.

Fibrates: These cholesterol-lowering drugs are effective in lowering triglycerides.

  • alirocumab

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Who Should Be Tested

Your GP may recommend that you have your blood cholesterol levels tested if you:

  • have been diagnosed with coronary heart disease, stroke or mini-stroke , or peripheral arterial disease
  • are over the age of 40;;people over 40 should have their estimate of CVD risk reviewed regularly
  • have a family history of early cardiovascular disease; for example, if your father or brother developed heart disease or had a heart attack or stroke before the age of 55, or if your mother or sister had these conditions before the age of 65
  • have a close family member who has a cholesterol-related condition, such as familial hypercholesterolaemia
  • are overweight or obese
  • have high blood pressure or diabetes
  • have another medical condition, such as kidney disease, an underactive thyroid, or an inflamed pancreas ; these conditions can cause increased levels of cholesterol or triglycerides

What Types Of Familial Hypercholesterolemia Exist

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There are two different kinds of FH, based on whether a variant gene copy is inherited from just one parent or both. The latter is very rare.

  • Heterozygous familial hypercholesterolemia a person inherits a gene variant from one parent with the condition. Most people with FH have this type of the disease. Children with HeFH usually have LDL cholesterol levels greater than 130 mg/dL and adults greater than 190 mg/dL. LDL levels should ideally be less than 110 mg/dL in kids and less than 100 mg/dL in adults.
  • Homozygous familial hypercholesterolemia a person inherits genetic variants from both parents, who both have the disorder. People with this rare type of FH usually have LDL cholesterol levels greater than 300 mg/dL for adults and above 400-500 mg/dL for children are at increased risk for heart attacks and coronary artery disease at a very young age. In general, HoFH must be treated earlier and more aggressively than HeFH.; ;

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Lack Of Physical Activity

Certainly related to the above, insufficient physical activity can also drive LDL higher. The good news, however, is that even modest increases in the amount of exercise you get can help a great deal. Ideally, doctors may want you getting up to 90 minutes a day of physical activity; however, even 30 to 45 minutes regularly can be helpful.

At bare minimum, the surgeon general recommends that adults get 2.5 hours of moderate exercise every week. This can include:

  • Biking
  • Swimming;;;

Heredity Can Play A Role

Some people inherit genes from their mother, father or even grandparents that cause them to have too much cholesterol. This is called familial hypercholesterolemia;. The severity of FH is related to the duration and degree of LDL cholesterol in the blood. FH is dangerous because it can cause premature atherosclerotic heart disease.

If you have a family history of FH or problems related to high cholesterol, get your levels checked.

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What Are The Treatments For High Cholesterol

Your healthcare provider may recommend treating high cholesterol with lifestyle changes alone or in combination with medications to actively lower your cholesterol level. Lifestyle changes include eating a healthy diet, maintaining a healthy weight, getting adequate physical exercise, and quitting smoking.

However, you may also need treatment with medications. Your doctor may order further blood tests to analyze specific inflammatory biomarkers and determine your individual need for cholesterol-lowering medication.

Medications used to treat high cholesterol include:

  • Bile acid resins or sequestrants, such as cholestyramine and colesevelam , which help your body eliminate or remove cholesterol from the blood
  • Ezetimibe , which prevents the absorption of cholesterol from the foods you eat
  • Fibrates or fibric acid derivatives, such as fenofibrate and gemfibrozil , which help reduce triglycerides and increase the amount of high-density lipoprotein in your blood
  • Niacin or nicotinic acid , which helps your body increase HDL levels while decreasing the amount of low-density lipoprotein levels and triglycerides in your blood
  • Statins, such as simvastatin and , which reduce the amount of cholesterol the liver produces

You can help control your cholesterol levels and reduce your risk of developing cardiovascular disease by following the treatment plan you and your healthcare provider design specifically for you

Is High Cholesterol Dangerous

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High cholesterol is just one of several risk factors for coronary heart disease. A health-care professional will consider a person’s overall risk when assessing their cholesterol levels and discussing treatment options.

Risk factors are conditions that increase a person’s risk for developing heart disease. Some risk factors can be changed and others cannot. In general, the more risk factors a person has, the greater the chance of developing coronary heart disease. Some risk factors can be controlled; however, some cannot be controlled.

Risk factors that cannot be controlled include:

  • Age
  • Family history of early heart disease

Risk factors that can be controlled include:

  • High blood cholesterol
  • Low HDL cholesterol

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