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High Cholesterol Levels
Reducing High Cholesterol Levels, without using Statins
Statins has a number of side effects including liver damage and muscle damage. It can also cause brain damage and obviously cause stones in the bile ducts of the liver
There are natural ways to make the need for increased cholesterol less and that is changing the diet, exercising, sun exposure, once the body has normal vitamin D levels, cholesterol levels automatically drop.
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Written by The Healthline Editorial Team
Medically Reviewed by George T. Krucik, MD, MBA on January 20, 2016
Alternatives to Statins for Lowering Cholesterol
What Are Statins?
Statins are prescription drugs designed to lower cholesterol. Statins function by inhibiting an enzyme needed to produce cholesterol in the liver. Without the help of that enzyme, your body cannot transform the fat you consume into cholesterol.
Having too much cholesterol circulating in your arteries is dangerous because it can build up plaque. A buildup of plaque can prevent blood from flowing properly and can increase the risk of a heart attack.
Types of Statins Available
There are several types of statins available. They include:
Although all statins work in the same way, your body might respond better to one type than another. This is why doctors sometimes try several types of statins before they can find the right one for you.
Some are more likely to interact with other drugs or organic compounds. For example, the statins Lipitor (atorvastatin), Pravachol (pravastatin), and Zocor (simvastatin) can interact with grapefruit juice. This is according to the Food and Drug Administration. The interaction can be very dangerous. Mixing these drugs with grapefruit can increase the amount of medication in the bloodstream and cause serious side effects.
Risks and Side Effects
Although most people benefit from statins, these drugs can have side effects. The most serious side effects occur in people who are taking other medications or who have an underlying health condition. Many side effects go away as your body adapts to the medication.
According to the Mayo Clinic, the most common side effect of statins is muscle and joint aches and pains. The medication can also cause nausea and vomiting. More serious side effects include liver and kidney damage, an increase in blood sugar, and neurological side effects. In some people, statins can cause a breakdown in muscle cells and lead to permanent muscle damage.
Cholesterol Absorption Inhibitors
If statins are not an option or you suffer from side effects, your doctor can prescribe a different drug to treat high cholesterol. A common alternative is a cholesterol absorption inhibitor.
These drugs prevent your small intestine from properly absorbing the cholesterol you consume. If it can’t be absorbed, it won’t reach your bloodstream. The only one available on the market is the drug ezetimibe (Zetia). This drug can be combined with statins to produce faster results. However, many doctors prescribe ezetimibe alone and combine it with a low-fat diet to help reduce cholesterol.
Another alternative to statins is bile acid-binding resins or sequestrants. These drugs work by binding to the bile in your intestines, blocking cholesterol absorption into your bloodstream.
A common prescription for high triglycerides is niacin or vitamin B-3. Niacin can help lower bad cholesterol (LDL) and increase good cholesterol (HDL).
10 Ways to Lower Cholesterol Without
Dr. Crandall recommends the following steps to lower cholesterol without drugs:
1. Change your diet. A plant-based diet, which includes large amounts of fruits, vegetables, and whole grains, along with meat substitutes like beans, lowers cholesterol naturally.
2. Take a plant sterols supplement. Plant sterols, also known as plant stanols, are the plant version of cholesterol and when consumed in sufficient amounts, they block the absorption of human cholesterol in the small intestine. There are products that have plant sterols, like special margarines, but they also contain chemicals, so you’re better off with a two-gram daily supplement.
3. Start your day with oatmeal. Oatmeal is the best food defense against cholesterol. The reason is that oatmeal contains soluble fiber, which turns into a gel in the body, which helps you feel full and also interferes with the digestion of cholesterol, whisking it out of your body. Oat bran and cold oat cereals, like Cheerios, do this as well.
4. Get 8-10 hours of sleep a night. Sleep deprivation hikes low-density LDL cholesterol, known as the “bad” cholesterol, contributes to high blood pressure, and leads to overeating. If you snore, or find yourself excessively sleepy during the day, get checked for the common and dangerous sleep disorder known as sleep apnea.
5. Check your Vitamin D level. Vitamin D deficiency is linked to high cholesterol. The body’s ability to synthesize Vitamin D from the sun diminishes as you age. Get your vitamin D levels checked with a blood test. If your level is low, take a daily vitamin D supplement.
this is what Wikipedia as to say about cholesterol
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
hypercholesterolaemia, elevated cholesterol
Formula structure of cholesterol
Classification and external resources
[edit on Wikidata]
Hypercholesterolemia, also called dyslipidemia, is the presence of high levels of cholesterol in the blood. It is a form of high blood lipids and “hyperlipoproteinemia” (elevated levels of lipoproteins in the blood).
Elevated levels of non-HDL cholesterol and LDL in the blood may be a consequence of diet, obesity, inherited (genetic) diseases (such as LDL receptor mutations in familial hypercholesterolemia), or the presence of other diseases such as diabetes and an underactive thyroid.
Cholesterol is one of three major classes of lipids which all animal cells use to construct their membranes and is thus manufactured by all animal cells. Plant cells do not manufacture cholesterol. It is also the precursor of the steroid hormones and bile acids. Since cholesterol is insoluble in water, it is transported in the blood plasma within protein particles (lipoproteins). Lipoproteins are classified by their density: very low density lipoprotein (VLDL), low density lipoprotein (LDL), intermediate density lipoprotein (IDL) and high density lipoprotein (HDL). All the lipoproteins carry cholesterol, but elevated Get the full article hear click
Controlling High Cholesterol
High cholesterol is a well-known risk factor in heart disease. This waxy, fat-like substance comes from the diet, but is primarily made by the liver, and is an essential component of cell membranes. The body also uses it to produce hormones and vitamin D.
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Cholesterol is carried through the bloodstream attached to two different compounds called lipoproteins: low-density lipoproteins (LDL) and high-density lipoproteins (HDL). LDL is commonly known as the “bad cholesterol”; it carries cholesterol from the liver throughout the body, making it available and potentially allowing it to be deposited in artery walls. HDL is known as the “good cholesterol”; it picks up cholesterol from the blood and delivers it to cells that use it, or back to the liver to be recycled or eliminated from the body.
Causes and Symptoms
The body needs cholesterol to function, but too much of it in the blood, or too much of the wrong kind, can add up to trouble. The factors leading to heart disease are as follows:
High cholesterol, especially high LDL levels. These two factors combine to form a well known risk factor for heart disease (though people can have heart disease without having high cholesterol). Lifestyle may influence cholesterol levels in part, especially the consumption of saturated fats, but the tendency toward high cholesterol appears to be genetic. Treating high cholesterol levels with a low cholesterol diet and nutritional supplementation is moderately effective. Medications to lower cholesterol are usually very effective.