The cholesterol is a type of lipid found in the blood and that it is essential for the proper functioning of the body, contrary to what one might think about its effects on health. Without going any further, it participates in the metabolism of vitamin D.

The main problem arises when the levels of this substance are too high in the blood. In that case, they constitute one of the most important risk factors for health.

Regarding cholesterol, Dr. Antonio Álvarez-Vieitez, head of Cardiology at Hospital Nuestra Señora del Rosario (Madrid) and member of the Spanish Society of Arteriosclerosis and the Spanish Society of Cardiology, explains in an interview for 'Infosalus' that «there are lipoproteins that carry cholesterol through the blood. One, the so-called 'bad', low-density or 'LDL', which is like a taxi, takes it and distributes it to all the cells of the body. If it is elevated, there is a part that is not distributed and sticks to the arteries”.

And on the other hand is the cholesterol

of high intensity or HDL (good). In this case it is “the taxi that collects the excess cholesterol it finds and takes it to the liver to eliminate it or expel it through the bile”.

Cardiovascular risk factor

Having excess levels of cholesterol in the blood poses a significant risk to cardiovascular health. According to Dr. Álvarez-Vieitez, high cholesterol is the most important risk factor for the development of a heart attack, stroke or vascular accident.

Harvard tiene el truco para reducir rápido los triglicéridos y el colesterolHarvard has the trick to lower triglycerides and cholesterol fast

In this regard, this specialist explains that “the other important factors are hypertension, tobacco and diabetes. These are the ones that can be changed. Those that cannot be changed are age, sex, and heredity (male, older, and if there is a family history). Stress, a sedentary lifestyle and being overweight are also factors that influence.”

To keep the levels of cholesterol in the blood at bay, it is important to know that only a 12% of cholesterol produced is linked to food; while the remaining 80% is generated in the liver.

In this sense, this cardiologist, member of the Spanish Society of Arteriosclerosis and the Spanish Society of Cardiology, highlights that “a diet low in animal fats, rich in fruits, vegetables and fish is important. Also do sports, avoiding a sedentary lifestyle and being overweight. That is to say, opt for polyunsaturated fats, olive oil or nuts and completely stay away from fast food or industrial pastries”.

Cholesterol-lowering drugs

Some of the most appropriate drugs to reduce blood cholesterol levels are statins. However, there is a general belief that this type of medication has detrimental effects on the health of the body.

Thus, Dr. Álvarez-Vieitez points out that statins are a highly effective medication against cholesterol and triglycerides. “Studies show that they can save many lives. It would be good if the conclusion of this interview were that most of those who have cholesterol should take medication, statins, which lower the risk of arteriosclerosis. If your cholesterol is always somewhat high, in addition to monitoring your diet or exercising, you should take statins, which reduce the risk of heart attacks and strokes, of cardiovascular accidents”, he concludes.

92911 92911