In this section of Seattle Organic Restaurants I’m going to talk about cholesterol. Cholesterol is a fatty substance that is used by the body to repair cell membranes and helps with the functioning of nerve impulses. There are two major types of cholesterol; low-density lipoprotein (LDL) often known as bad cholesterol and high-density lipoprotein (HDL) also known as good cholesterol.
When there is already damage into the artery wall, too much of bad cholesterol can get to the artery wall and start accumulation of plaque over time. Plaque tightens the artery so there is less and less space for the blood flow in the artery. The accumulation of plague in the artery can pinch off the artery or in most cases the plague will rapture and form a dark clot that will block the artery completely and in this case the person will have heart attack or stroke.
Good cholesterol is an important substance for the body but the excessive amount of bad cholesterol can cause cardiovascular disease. Accumulation of bad cholesterol (LDL) is the essence of plaque forming process and directly is related to cardiovascular health. The bad cholesterol level is high in an obese person while the good cholesterol level is low. In people with obesity the blood also gets thicker and is more likely to clot and this would limit the blood supply to the heart muscles or brain.
Lowering the Level of Bad Cholesterol (Increasing the Level of Good Cholesterol)In people who have cardiovascular disease both statin medications and life changing habits is necessary to optimize the cholesterol level. Statin medications such as Zocor (simvastatin) and Lipitor (atorvastatin) block the production of a substance by the liver for making cholesterol. Life style changes and cholesterol medications are the most effective ways to lower the bad cholesterol level. Foods that help to raise the level of HDL are diets high in fiber (fruits like berries and green superfoods), wild caught fish (salmon, halibut, mackerel, herring and etc), raw chocolate cacao beans, omega 3 fatty acids (avocado, fish oil, olive oil), nuts superfoods (walnuts, cashew nuts, almonds and etc) and superherbs. Foods that are deeply fried, high in sugar, salt and fat (processed foods); meat and dairy products increases the level of bad cholesterol.