You’ve probably heard that high cholesterol is linked to cardiovascular diseases. However, recent research has shown a link between high cholesterol and an increased risk of developing cancer.
WHAT EXACTLY IS CHOLESTEROL?
Cholesterol is the fat-like substance produced by our cells and used to make vitamins, hormones, and bile acid which are important for digestion. We also get cholesterol from our diet. Cholesterol is carried around in the bloodstream in a vessel called lipoproteins. There are 2 major types; low-density lipoprotein (LDL) and high-density lipoprotein (HDL). Both are needed in our cells but too much LDL in the blood can cause blockage of the arteries which increases the risk of heart disease. Thus, LDL is often referred to as “bad” cholesterol.
WHAT CAUSES HIGH LEVELS OF BAD CHOLESTEROL?
High cholesterol can be triggered by some risk factors some of which you might not be aware of. These include:
- Stress: stress hormones such as cortisol and adrenaline can trigger some changes that can lead to high cholesterol.
- Medications: such as some birth control pills, antivirals, and anticonvulsants can raise your cholesterol level.
- Hypothyroidism: low levels of thyroid hormones affects the liver whereby it can no longer remove excess LDL (bad) cholesterol. This leads to a buildup of cholesterol.
- Type 2 diabetes: diabetes tends to increase the level of bad cholesterol and lower good cholesterol levels. Hence, these LDL (bad cholesterol) particles stick to the walls of the arteries and cause damage to blood vessels.
- Menopause: this is accompanied by a decrease in the level of estrogen hormone. Estrogen also assists in regulating cholesterol levels. Hence, a decrease in estrogen can lead to high cholesterol.
- Liver problems: liver diseases such as hepatitis or non-alcoholic fatty liver disease can affect the functioning of the liver. The liver has the additional function of breaking down cholesterol. Hence, an impaired liver can cause a buildup of cholesterol in the body.
HOW IS HIGH CHOLESTEROL LINKED TO CANCER?
High cholesterol fuels breast cancer cells according to recent research. This is because these cancer cells use cholesterol to improve tolerance to stress making these cells stronger and less likely to die. As cancer cells move from the original site of infection, they consume cholesterol. Most of them die but the cancerous cells that don’t die become more resistant to stress, multiply and spread to other parts of the body.
Also, a breakdown product of cholesterol known as 27HC encourages tumor growth in breast cancer cells.
REMEDIES TO LOWER YOUR CHOLESTEROL LEVELS
- Lifestyle modification: This includes replacing saturated fat with healthier fat in your diet. For example; instead of using butter and vegetable oil in your cooking, you can use olive oil instead. Also, soluble fiber such as oats, fruits, and vegetables decreases the absorption of cholesterol in your blood. Other modifications include; reducing alcohol intake, engaging in exercise, and quitting smoking.
2. Use of cholesterol-lowering supplement: A lot of research done on red yeast rice has proven that it is a very effective constituent in lowering cholesterol levels. This is because it produces a substance called Monacolin K which can reduce the production of cholesterol by the liver. This compound is chemically identical to the active ingredient in major cholesterol-lowering drugs (statins). NATURE’S FIELD CHOLESDEFENCE contains red yeast rice as a major constituent. Therefore, this product is a great alternative for lowering your cholesterol levels!
Although cholesterol has important functions in the body, excessive build-up of bad cholesterol can block the arteries and lead to a variety of cardiovascular diseases. Therefore, it is important to make major changes in your diet such as eating healthier foods and avoiding trans-fat. Also while doing that, don’t forget that all these measures work synergistically to lower your cholesterol levels including using a high-quality certified cholesterol-lowering supplement such as NATURE’S FIELD CHOLESDEFENCE.