When it comes to cholesterol I believe that our medical system with their guidelines is putting the population in danger of developing unnecessary ailments.
Let’s look at some of the functions that cholesterol performs and/or is responsible for:
- It’s a soft waxy substance that is incorporated in every tissue, in addition to being a constituent of every cell membrane. Considering that the human body has about one hundred trillion cells, and cholesterol is found in each and every one of them, then it must imply that cholesterol plays a vital role in ensuring the well-being of every individual.
- It is a precursor to hormones like cortisol; estrogen; testosterone; progesterone; DHEA (Dehydroepiandrosterone). Cholesterol serves as the starting material in the synthesis of all steroid hormones by the adrenal glands. It is first converted to pregnenolone, which is then transformed to the other sex hormones including DHEA, estrogens and testosterone.
- Cholesterol is used in the production of Vitamin D. The human body is required to metabolize vitamin D at an optimum level in order to maintain good health. Consequently, the consumption of Statin drugs to lower cholesterol may result in Vitamin D deficiency, which would in turn, obstruct many biological activities that are dependent on Vitamin D.
- When human beings are under stress, their bodies go into a “fight or flight” mode for survival. Your body is designed to cope with stress by releasing a hormone cortisol, which is made from cholesterol. This implies that cholesterol plays a vital role in enhancing your ability to withstand various stressors of life, because it affects your survival mechanisms.
As I mentioned above the human body requires cholesterol to build cell membranes and produce bile salts that aid digestion and prevent gallstones. 75% of the body requirement is produced in the liver, while only 25% is absorbed from the diet. You usually hear of HDL (good cholesterol) & LDL (bad cholesterol).
In reality there’s no such thing is good or bad cholesterol since LDL transports the cholesterol to the cells & HDL brings the excess cholesterol back to the liver where it’s recycled for later use.
We hear it all the time that high cholesterol = high risk of cardiovascular disease. Partly it may be true but you have to look the whole picture & look at everyone as an individual & not one statement fits all. When it comes to high risk of cardiovascular disease you have to look at individual’s lifestyle, i.e. eating habits, exercise habits, stress level, family history, etc.
You always hear of negative effects of high cholesterol but you never hear that low cholesterol may contribute to low levels of sex hormones, you see more and more commercials on low testosterone & infertility but you never hear doctors connecting them with low cholesterol levels.
As many as ten million Americans with high cholesterol levels may not know that their cholesterol is elevated due to undiagnosed thyroid problems. According to AACE President Richard A. Dickey, M.D., “Patients who have been diagnosed with high cholesterol should ask their physician about having their thyroid checked. If they have an underlying thyroid condition in addition to their high cholesterol, the cholesterol problem will be difficult to control until normal levels of thyroid hormone are restored.”
So before you get on cholesterol lowering meds and learn how to cope with its side effects, such us headaches, muscle pain, diarrhea, etc, educate yourself and ask your doctor the proper questions & be proactive in your own health. Your health is your biggest asset.