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The danger of oxidised cholesterol

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High cholesterol present in your body and build-up of plaque in the arteries can result in heart disease. Heart disease is one of the leading causes of death around the world. Oxidise cholesterol is one of the main reasons why plaque build-up happens in your arteries.

What is cholesterol?

Cholesterol is a wax like substance that naturedly occurs in your body. Your body needs it to function. You also get cholesterol from the foods that you consume every day. If a build-up of cholesterol in your blood stream happens it can create a substance which is called as plaque. Plaque build-up happens between layers of your artery walls. Because of this build up it can continuously become more difficult for the heart to keep the blood circulating. When the plaque breaks apart, it can result in blood clots. If such blood clots go to the brain stroke may happen. If any of the arteries leading to your heart is blocked, you may suffer from heart attack. When plaque build-up happens in the arteries, your arteries become less flexible and can result in hardening of the arteries which is also known as atherosclerosis.

Cholesterol is divided into two types-high density lipoprotein (HDL) which is also known as good cholesterol and low density lipoprotein (LDL) which is also known as bad cholesterol. LDL contains fats and proteins and it is the main culprit that contributes to plaque build-up in the arteries.

Oxidised cholesterol

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The cholesterol that builds up on the artery wall is oxidised. Oxidation processes very damaging to the cholesterol cells. If because of any reason there is an overproduction of oxidised cholesterol, it can be dangerous for you. Your immune system present in the body may mistake oxidise cholesterol for bacteria and if that happens it will try to fight it off. In such a scenario, inflammation will happen inside the arterial wall and it can result in a terror sclerosis or heart disease.

Risk factors

Oxidised cholesterol has many risk factors associated with it. There are three main ways through which oxidised cholesterol can build up in the bloodstream.

  1. It can happen when you eat commercially fried foods like fried chicken and French fries
  2. when you eat access polyunsaturated fatty acids which are generally available in vegetable oils
  3. because of smoking cigarettes

You should always avoid unhealthiest fats like partially hydrogenated oils or trans fats. Vegetable oils of contain trans fats and that is why you need to avoid them so that do not add more oxidised cholesterol to your body and there is no plaque build-up.

You should also avoid processed foods because they add loss of oxidised cholesterol to your body. That is why, you need to avoid margarines, fast foods, fried foods, commercially baked goods. These foods are not good for you because they can cause inflammation in your body and that inflammation happens because of damage to your cell membrane and the oxidised LDL particles.

Prevention

How can you prevent oxidised cholesterol and damages caused by it?

There are a few things that you can do to prevent the damage.

  1. You should always eat healthy fats. Monounsaturated fats are good for you as they are anti-inflammatory.
  2. You should eat saturated fats in moderation.
  3. Eat plenty of fruits and vegetables.
  4. Read the nutrition levels and avoid hydrogenated or partially hydrogenated foods.

References 1. The Oxidized Cholesterol Strategy
2. The role of dietary oxidized cholesterol and oxidized fatty acids in the development of atherosclerosis
3. Cholesterol