As soon as we hear or see the word ‘Cholesterol’, we tend to get a little stressed. Most of us may not realise it, but our body actually needs a proper proportion of cholesterol for it to function well. What is this cholesterol anyway? Cholesterol is a fatty substance that’s present in every cell of our body and is responsible for making vitamin D and balancing hormones. The problem is the excess of cholesterol. The condition of ‘High Cholesterol’ can lead to some serious consequences and it indicates that you have more cholesterol in your body than you need.
A simple medical test will reveal the level of cholesterol in your body. If you or any of your family members find out that there’s a high amount of cholesterol present then dietary changes (check out some options here), exercise and medication will have to become a priority. It is important for all family members to take care of themselves and each other, especially where cholesterol is concerned.
But let’s first try and understand the effects that high cholesterol has on the body:-
One of the most common effects of high cholesterol is the rise in heart-related issues. Too much cholesterol, when accumulated in your arteries, forms plaque that narrows them down. Because the arteries are narrowed, blood flow is reduced which can result in a heart attack at some point if not addressed. In such cases a family should be careful with food intake – avoid anything too oily and reduce stress. Cholesterol can become a family issue in no time, so it is important to support each other.
High cholesterol may lead to diabetes as you tend to gain weight and your body’s regular digestive function is disrupted. Also, too much of fat in the body impairs the body’s ability to produce enough insulin to regulate blood sugar. Uncontrolled diabetes can lead to a stroke, kidney disease and more. Diabetes can become hereditary later on, so ensure you keep your family safe; get regular checkups and tests done, especially for the older folks at home.
High cholesterol can create a bile imbalance and cause gallstones in your body. Gallstones are painful but can be removed with surgery and medication.
Too much of fat deposits in your body can make you overweight and lead to obesity. Obesity can be strenuous on your body and can lead to many lifestyle diseases. Being overweight puts a strain on the joints, and can eventually lead to severe joint pain. Motivate your family members to stay fit and you will always have a healthy and happy family. Simple exercises at home or even regular walks as a family unit can help you stay in shape and spend some quality time with family. Even yoga can be of tremendous help in reducing weight and controlling high cholesterol.
A stroke occurs when blood flow to your brain is disrupted. When blood doesn’t reach your brain, the brain is deprived of oxygen. Not everyone with high cholesterol can suffer from a stroke, but it does increase your chances. So you and your family must ensure you take cholesterol seriously.
Lowering cholesterol levels can save lives. Most of the time we may not experience or even show any of the symptoms on the outside, but a health check up will always give you the right information. With regular checkups, you can also check who may be leaning towards having a problem with high cholesterol and nip it in the bud. It’s important, that as a family, you stay aware, stay safe, and stay healthy.
If you’re looking at how to get started to reduce cholesterol levels, check out our post here.