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218 cholesterol level: Total Cholesterol: 218 mg/dL

Total Cholesterol: 218 mg/dL

Elle Penner, MPH, RD

5 mins

What does a total cholesterol level of 218 mean? Are there any symptoms associated with this level?

A total cholesterol level of 218 mg/dL is considered elevated. Although cholesterol serves several important functions in the body, elevated cholesterol may put you at greater risk for heart disease. 

Your total cholesterol is calculated by adding your LDL (bad) cholesterol, HDL (good) cholesterol, and 20% of triglyceride levels. 

  • LDL is often referred to as “bad” cholesterol because it accumulates in your blood vessels and increases your risk for heart disease. Ideally, LDL levels should be less than 100 mg/dL, but lower is better. 

  • HDL is considered “good” cholesterol because it scavenges “bad” blood cholesterol and returns it to the liver for excretion. A HDL level >60 mg/dL is considered optimal and protective against heart disease, though levels >40 mg/dL for men and >50 mg/dL for women are still considered good.

  • Triglycerides are another type of fat that can build up in the bloodstream and increase your risk of heart disease. Ideally, triglycerides should be <150 mg/dL.  

Elevated total cholesterol doesn’t have symptoms, which is why it’s important to know your levels. Lowering your cholesterol will reduce your risk of developing heart disease and other health issues. If you already have heart disease, lowering your total cholesterol can reduce your odds of serious complications, like a heart attack or stroke. 

Factors that could contribute to a total cholesterol level of 218: 

  • Diet: Diets low in fiber and high in saturated fats, trans fats, added sugar, and other refined carbohydrates can cause blood cholesterol to go up.

  • Weight. Being overweight also tends to increase cholesterol levels. 

  • Physical Activity. Being active can help lower LDL (bad) cholesterol and raise HDL (good) cholesterol levels.  

  • Smoking: Smoking lowers your HDL (good) cholesterol, which can contribute to higher LDL (bad) cholesterol.

  • Medications: Certain medications can increase total cholesterol levels. Some of these include: corticosteroids, beta-blockers, thiazide diuretics, retinoids, growth hormones, and antivirals.

  • Diseases: Certain diseases like chronic kidney disease, diabetes, and HIV/AIDS can elevate total cholesterol.

  • Age and Sex: Premenopausal women tend to have lower total cholesterol levels than men of the same age. However, cholesterol levels tend to increase with age in both women and men. After the age of menopause, women’s LDL (bad) cholesterol levels tend to rise.

  • Genetics (heredity): Because genes partly determine how much cholesterol your body makes, high blood cholesterol can run in families. 

  • Race: Certain races may have an increased risk of high blood cholesterol. For example, Blacks/African Americans typically have higher HDL and LDL cholesterol levels than Caucasians.

  • Elevated HDL (good) cholesterol: A HDL level above 70 mg/dL may cause your total cholesterol to be elevated. High HDL is considered protective against heart disease and is typically not a concern if your LDL and triglycerides levels are normal.

What to do if your total cholesterol level is 218?

Making changes to your diet and adopting healthy habits can help lower your total cholesterol level. To lower your cholesterol:

  • Eat plenty of fiber-rich foods including veggies, fruits, whole grains, and legumes. Increase your fiber intake gradually to 30-40g fiber/ day. 

  • Limit your intake of refined carbohydrates and added sugars commonly found in foods like chips, candy, baked goods, processed foods, sweetened yogurt, ice cream, and soda. 

  • Avoid trans fats like partially hydrogenated oils and reduce your saturated fat intake to < 10% of total calories.  

  • Eat small, fatty fish like salmon, sardines, and trout, at least twice a week. 

  • Be active every day: Aim for 30-60 minutes of physical activity 5x/week.

  • Incorporate plant sterols and stanols daily (2g) in the form of food or a supplement. 

  • Lose weight if you are overweight or obese.

  • Quit smoking if you currently smoke.

  • If you have diabetes, achieve and maintain good blood sugar control (HbA1c).

Medications and supplements used to improve total cholesterol results

If diet and lifestyle changes are not enough to lower your cholesterol, some medications and supplements can be helpful to get them into a safer range. Some common ones include: 


Medications are typically prescribed if diet and lifestyle changes do not lower total cholesterol levels enough on their own. Some common cholesterol medications include:

  • Statins: Statins (including atorvastatin, simvastatin, and rosuvastatin) reduce cholesterol production in your liver. Because they typically need to be taken for life, statins are only prescribed if diet and lifestyle changes aren’t enough [3].

  • Ezetimibe can be helpful for those with familial hypercholesterolemia and who have side effects with statins. 

  • Bile acid sequestrants: These medications block cholesterol-rich bile acid from being absorbed into the bloodstream and can be prescribed in place of or in addition to a statin. 

  • PCSK9 inhibitors: This medicine is injected under your skin every 2 or 4 weeks and may be prescribed alongside a statin if you are at high risk of heart attack or stroke, or have familial hypercholesterolemia.

  • Lomitapide: Typically prescribed if you have familial hypercholesterolemia and requires liver enzyme monitoring as it can cause liver damage. Lomitapide is commonly also taken with vitamin E.


  • Plant sterols and stanols: Plant sterols and stanols (also called phytosterols) are found in plant cell membranes. They are similar in structure to cholesterol in the body and block dietary cholesterol from being absorbed. Phytosterols can be found in small quantities in vegetable oils, nuts, legumes, whole grains, fruits, and vegetables; however, the average daily intake (500 mg) is typically not enough to lower cholesterol. Studies show consuming 2000 mg (2g) of plant sterol and stanols daily from diet and supplements is effective for lowering total cholesterol [4]. Plant sterol and stanol supplements taken before or with meals can help lower total cholesterol in parallel with other recommended diet and lifestyle changes [4]. 

  • Omega-3 (EPA & DHA): Omega-3 fatty acids (specifically EPA & DHA) can significantly reduce blood triglyceride levels [7]. For cholesterol-lowering benefits, aim to consume 2,400-3,000 mg of omega-3 fats per day from your diet (salmon, mackerel, and trout are all good sources) and a quality fish oil supplement. 

  • Beta-glucan: Beta-glucan is a form of soluble fiber that has been shown to help lower cholesterol levels. It’s found naturally in whole grains like barley, oats, rye, and wheat, mushrooms, and seaweed and is also available as a nutritional supplement. For cholesterol-lowering benefits, consume 3-7 g/day from your diet and a supplement.

  • Psyllium: Another type of soluble fiber made from the husk of psyllium seeds, psyllium is good for digestive health and regularity and can also help lower cholesterol. Psyllium supplements are sold in powder form and can help reduce lipid levels when taken daily at a dose of 8-12 g/day. 

  • Alpha-lipoic acid: alpha-lipoic acid is a potent antioxidant made in the body and found in foods like carrots, beets, spinach, broccoli, potatoes, and red meat. Research indicates that 600 mg/day of alpha-lipoic acid from your diet and a supplement may help lower total cholesterol and LDL (bad) cholesterol [8]. 

  • Turmeric: A spice commonly used to flavor and color curry dishes, turmeric may be helpful in lowering pro-inflammatory markers, blood cholesterol, and triglycerides [9]. More research needs to be done to determine optimal form and dosage but supplementing with 500 mg/day appears to be safe and potentially beneficial for lowering cholesterol.

  • Bergamot extract: Bergamot is a citrus fruit that has long been used for medicinal purposes. Taking bergamot extract (made from the juice of the fruit) seems to lower cholesterol and triglyceride levels in adults with high cholesterol [10,11]. One study suggests taking bergamot extract daily for a month may be as effective as taking a low dose of the cholesterol-lowering drug called rosuvastatin (Crestor) [11]. A recent research review indicates that 1000 mg/day may be most effective for lowering cholesterol. 

  • Green tea extract: Made from the leaves of the Camellia sinensis plant, green tea extract is a natural supplement that has been shown to help lower LDL (bad) and total cholesterol [12]. A daily dose of 400 mg may help lower your cholesterol but check with your doctor first as green tea extract can interact with certain medications, including beta-blockers and blood thinners. In addition, green tea extract may also have a stimulant effect.

What It Is and What to Do About It

Written by Jodi Helmer

  • Cholesterol Tests
  • Make Changes in the Kitchen
  • Read Food Labels
  • Get Moving
  • Lose Extra Weight
  • Quit Smoking
  • Check to See What’s Working
  • More

Has your doctor told you that you have “borderline” high cholesterol? That means your cholesterol level is above normal but not quite in the “high” range.

You have borderline high cholesterol if your total cholesterol is between 200 and 239 milligrams per deciliter (mg/dL).

Your doctor will also consider other things, like how much of your total cholesterol is LDL (“bad”) cholesterol and how much of it is HDL (“good”) cholesterol.

Making simple changes in your lifestyle is often enough to bring borderline cholesterol levels down to the normal range. Some people may also need to take medicine for it. And keep in mind that other things, like diabetes, high blood pressure, and smoking, also affect your heart health; it’s not just about cholesterol.

If you have borderline cholesterol, your doctor will decide whether you need treatment by looking at these and other risk factors for heart disease. They may ask you to get an imaging test of your heart called a coronary artery calcium (CAC) scan. This test reveals whether dangerous plaque has built up in your heart’s arteries.

You won’t know you have borderline cholesterol unless you get a cholesterol blood test. You should do that every 5 years.

The average American has a total cholesterol level of 200, which is in the borderline range.

You can turn it around before you get high cholesterol. Start with these steps.

Why Do I Need a Cholesterol Test?

Cholesterol is a waxy, fat-like substance. Your liver makes all the cholesterol your body needs. But you take in more cholesterol from certain foods, such as those from animals. If you have too much cholesterol in your body, it can build up in the walls of your arteries (as “plaque”) and eventually harden. This process, called atherosclerosis, actually narrows the arteries, making it harder for blood to travel through them. 

Unfortunately, high cholesterol doesn’t cause symptoms. In later stages of atherosclerosis, though, you may have angina – severe chest pain from lack of blood flow to the heart. If an artery gets totally blocked, a heart attack results. A routine blood cholesterol test is a far better way of finding out what your cholesterol level is.

What Does a Cholesterol Test Measure?

In addition to measuring the total cholesterol in your blood, the standard cholesterol test (called a “lipid panel”) measures three specific kinds of fat:

Low-density lipoproteins (LDL). This is the “bad cholesterol,” the main cause of plaque buildup, which increases your risk of heart disease. In general, the lower the number, the better. But LDL cholesterol is only one part of a larger equation that measures a person’s overall risk of having a heart attack or stroke. 

For years, guidelines focused on specific target numbers for people to achieve to lower their risk. The most recent guidelines focus on a person’s overall risk and, based on that risk, recommend a certain percentage of LDL reduction as one part of a way to prevent serious heart and blood vessel problems.

High-density lipoproteins (HDL). This is the “good cholesterol.” It transports bad cholesterol from the blood to the liver, where it is excreted by the body. Your HDL is another part of the equation that identifies the risk of a cardiovascular event. In general, the higher the number the better, although, as with LDL, the emphasis has shifted from specific target numbers to ways to reduce the overall risk.

Triglycerides. Another type of fat in the bloodstream, triglycerides are also linked to heart disease. They are stored in fat cells throughout the body.

What Do Cholesterol Test Numbers Mean?

If you have a lipoprotein profile, it’s important to look at all the numbers from the cholesterol test, not just the total cholesterol number. That’s because LDL and HDL levels are two top signs of potential heart disease. Use the information below to interpret your results (with the help of your doctor, of course). This will help you get a better idea about your risk for heart disease.

Total blood cholesterol level:

  • High risk: 240 mg/dL and above
  • Borderline high risk: 200-239 mg/dL
  • Desirable: Less than 200 mg/dL

LDL cholesterol levels:

190 mg/dL and above represents a high risk for heart disease and is a strong sign that you can benefit from intensive treatment, including lifestyle changes, diet, and statin therapy for reducing that risk.

For LDL levels that are equal to or less than 189 mg/dL, the guidelines recommend strategies for lowering LDL by 30% to 50%, depending on what other risk factors you have that can affect the health of your heart and blood vessels.

HDL cholesterol:

  • High risk: Less than 40 mg/dL for men and less than 50 mg/dL for women


  • Very high risk: 500 mg/dL and above
  • High risk: 200-499 mg/dL
  • Borderline high risk: 150-199 mg/dL
  • Normal: Less than 150 mg/dL

Use your diet to help lower your LDL cholesterol and raise your HDL cholesterol.

For the biggest impact, choose foods that are low in saturated fats and trans fats, and high in fiber, antioxidants, and omega-3 fatty acids. Whole grains, beans, apples, pears, oatmeal, salmon, walnuts, and olive oil are excellent heart-healthy choices.

Here are some more diet tips to help you lower your cholesterol:

Make meat lean. Cut back on red meats that are high in saturated fat and cholesterol, and choose only lean meats with very little visible fat. Examples of lean beef include London broil, eye of round, and filet mignon. Avoid processed meats like bacon and sausage, which are linked to higher odds of heart disease and diabetes.

Remove skin from poultry. That’s where much of the fat is.

Eat more seafood. It usually has less fat than other meat. The American Heart Association recommends eating two servings of fatty fish (like salmon, tuna, or mackerel) each week for heart health. Those fish are good sources of omega-3 fatty acids, which are good for you.

Limit saturated fat. These are found in whole-fat dairy products, mayonnaise, and hydrogenated or partially hydrogenated oils or fats (such as stick margarine). These products may also contain trans fats, which can raise your cholesterol level.

Go liquid. For cooking, replace saturated fats that are solid at room temperature (such as butter and shortening) with liquid monounsaturated fats such as olive, canola, and flaxseed oils. There’s evidence that eating moderate amounts of monounsaturated fat – found in such foods as nuts, seeds, and avocados – may lower LDL cholesterol.

Add fiber with plant foods. Good sources include grapefruit, apples, beans and other legumes, barley, carrots, cabbage, and oatmeal.

Get two daily servings of plant sterol-rich foods. These foods, such as nuts, can help lower cholesterol. Plant sterols are also added to some soft margarines, granola bars, yogurts, and orange juice.

You need to know how much saturated fat, trans fat, and cholesterol are in your favorite foods. That can help you make better choices.

Too much saturated fat can drive up your cholesterol level. It’s found mostly in animal products. Cholesterol also is found in animal products. Your doctor or a dietitian can let you know what your daily limit should be.

Artificial trans fats can raise your LDL (“bad”) cholesterol. They’re in packaged foods, like some crackers, cookies, pastries, and microwave popcorn.

Check the nutrition label. And because products marked “0 grams” of trans fats per serving can have up to a gram of trans fats, check the ingredients label, too. Anything marked “partially hydrogenated” is trans fat.

Exercise helps you get your cholesterol down from the borderline range.

Aim for at least 30 minutes of moderate-intensity exercise, such as brisk walking, per day (150 minutes each week). You can also do a more intense workout for 75 minutes a week.

Taking a walk, riding your bike, playing a team sport, or taking a group fitness class will increase your heart rate while raising HDL (“good”) cholesterol. Push yourself, if you can, but keep in mind that moderate exercise is better than none at all.

You can have borderline high cholesterol and be at a healthy weight. But if you’re overweight, losing those extra pounds can help bring your cholesterol level back down.

Losing as little as 5% of your body weight can lower your cholesterol levels. One study found that adults who took part in a 12-week exercise program lowered their LDL by 18 points, and their total cholesterol dropped 26 points.

With a combination of weight loss and a healthy diet, it’s possible to lower LDL levels up to 30% – results that are similar to taking cholesterol-lowering drugs.

If you’re not sure whether your weight is in a healthy place, ask your doctor to check your body mass index (BMI). A normal BMI is 18 to 25. If your BMI is 25 or higher, ask your doctor for advice on the best types of physical activity for you.

If you smoke, kicking the habit can help raise your HDL (“good”) cholesterol up to 10%.

Have you tried to quit smoking before? For many people, it takes a couple of tries. Keep trying until it sticks. It’s worth it, for your whole body’s health.

During regular screening appointments, your doctor will check your cholesterol levels to see if the changes you’ve made have gotten you to your cholesterol goal.

If lifestyle changes aren’t enough to lower borderline high cholesterol, your doctor may talk to you about medication.

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What level of cholesterol is considered high? | Eternal questions | Question-Answer

Elena Slobodyan

Estimated reading time: 12 minutes


Diseases and treatment

The level of cholesterol in the blood is an important indicator of health. Cholesterol is present in every organ, in every cell membrane and in muscle. Without this substance, the construction of the skeleton, the regeneration of damaged tissues, the metabolism and the production of the most important sex hormones, such as testosterone, estrogen and cortisol, are impossible.

A person receives only 20% of cholesterol from food, in particular, from animal fats, meat, some types of proteins and other products, and the remaining 80% is produced in the human liver.

What is cholesterol?

Cholesterol is usually divided into “bad” and “good”. Both forms are found in the blood plasma as part of lipoproteins: complex complex compounds consisting of fats and proteins.

“Good” cholesterol is the code name for high-density lipoprotein (HDL). The main function of “good” cholesterol is the continuous transfer of excess cholesterol from the blood to the liver for processing and further excretion from the body. Therefore, such cholesterol actively protects the body from serious diseases and cleanses the inner walls of blood vessels.

In contrast, “bad” cholesterol settles inside the walls of the arteries, forming plaques. It combines with apoproteins (special types of protein) and forms fat-protein complexes (LDL). Dangerous for health is the increase in the level of this particular cholesterol.

Cholesterol norms for women and men

The content of cholesterol in human blood can vary from 3.6 mmol/l to 7.8 mmol/l. The optimal level of cholesterol is considered:


Norm for men, mmol/l

Norm for women, mmol/l

Cholesterol, total

3. 6-5.2


“Bad” cholesterol (LDL)


to 3.5

Good cholesterol (HDL)



Norms of blood cholesterol in men by age


Total cholesterol

LDL cholesterol

HDL cholesterol

< 5 years

2. 95-5.25 mmol/l

5-10 years

3.13-5.25 mmol/l

1.63-3.34 mmol/l

0.98-1.94 mmol/l

10-15 years

3.08-5.23 mmol/l

1.66-3.34 mmol/l

0.96-1.91 mmol/l

15-20 years

2.91-5.10 mmol/l

1.61-3.37 mmol/l

0.78-1.63 mmol/l

20-25 years old

3. 16-5.59 mmol/l

1.71-3.81 mmol/l

0.78-1.63 mmol/l

25-30 years old

3.44-6.32 mmol/l

1.81-4.27 mmol/l

0.80-1.63 mmol/l

30-35 years

3.57-6.58 mmol/l

2.02-4.79 mmol/l

0.72-1.63 mmol/l

35-40 years old

3.63-6.99 mmol/l

1. 94-4.45 mmol/l

0.88-2.12 mmol/l

40-45 years

3.91-6.94 mmol/l

2.25-4.82 mmol/l

0.70-1.73 mmol/l

45-50 years old

4.09-7.15 mmol/l

2.51-5.23 mmol/l

0.78-1.66 mmol/l

50-55 years

4.09-7.17 mmol/l

2.31-5.10 mmol/l

0. 72-1.63 mmol/l

55-60 years old

4.04-7.15 mmol/l

2.28-5.26 mmol/l

0.72-1.84 mmol/l

60-65 years

4.12-7.15 mmol/l

2.15-5.44 mmol/l

0.78-1.91 mmol/l

65-70 years old

4.09-7.10 mmol/l

2.49-5.34 mmol/l

0.78-1.94 mmol/l

> 70 years old

3. 73-6.86 mmol/l

2.49-5.34 mmol/l

0.85-1.94 mmol/l

Norms of blood cholesterol in women by age


Total cholesterol

LDL cholesterol

HDL cholesterol

< 5 years

2.90-5.18 mmol/l

5-10 years

2. 26-5.30 mmol/l

1.76-3.63 mmol/l


10-15 years

3.21-5.20 mmol/l

1.76-3.52 mmol/l

0.96-1.81 mmol/l

15-20 years old

3.08-5.18 mmol/l

1.53-3.55 mmol/l

0.91-1.91 mmol/l

20-25 years old

3.16-5.59 mmol/l

1. 48-4.12 mmol/l

0.85-2.04 mmol/l

25-30 years old

3.32-5.75 mmol/l

1.84-4.25 mmol/l

0.96-2.15 mmol/l

30-35 years

3.37-5.96 mmol/l

1.81-4.04 mmol/l

0.93-1.99 mmol/l

35-40 years old

3.63-6.27 mmol/l

1.94-4.45 mmol/l

0. 88-2.12 mmol/l

40-45 years

3.81-6.53 mmol/l

1.92-4.51 mmol/l

0.88-2.28 mmol/l

45-50 years old

3.94-6.86 mmol/l

2.05-4.82 mmol/l

0.88-2.25 mmol/l

50-55 years

4.20-7.38 mmol/l

2.28-5.21 mmol/l

0.96-2.38 mmol/l

55-60 years old

4. 45-7.77 mmol/l

2.31-5.44 mmol/l

0.96-2.35 mmol/l

60-65 years old

4.45-7.69 mmol/l

2.59-5.80 mmol/l

0.98-2.38 mmol/l

65-70 years old

4.43-7.85 mmol/l

2.38-5.72 mmol/l

0.91-2.48 mmol/l

> 70 years old

4.48-7.25 mmol/l

2. 49-5.34 mmol/l

0.85-2.38 mmol/l

What happens when you have high cholesterol?

High cholesterol can be caused by:

How can blood cholesterol levels be controlled?

Only physical activity can increase the level of “good” cholesterol: medium and moderate physical activity on the body can increase its production. A low-carbohydrate diet can also help lower bad cholesterol levels. You should exclude the use of margarine, mayonnaise, chips, pastries, fried foods and convenience foods.

How can I check my cholesterol level?

To find out your cholesterol level, you should do a biochemical blood test. The analysis can be taken in almost any clinic, for this they take approximately 5 milliliters of blood from the cubital vein. It is important to know that before taking a cholesterol test, you should not eat anything for 12 hours, limit yourself to physical activity.

See also:

  • …What are the standards for blood sugar and cholesterol levels? →
  • What pressure is considered normal, low and high? →
  • …What is the difference between good and bad cholesterol? →


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The bitter truth about cholesterol | Institute of Elastography

It constitutes the main material of atherosclerotic plaques (APB). Atherosclerosis narrows the arteries (stenosis) and causes ischemia. Or the plaque crumbles and its fragments (emboli) from cholesterol mixed with fibrin fly with the blood flow further to the periphery and plug small branches of arteries. All these processes lead to partial or complete blockage of the arteries supplying vital organs: the brain, heart, eyes, kidneys, lower limbs, intestines. As a result, strokes, heart attacks, gangrene, and blindness develop. The end point is death from cholesterol.

Mankind is dying from cardiovascular and cerebrovascular catastrophes (diseases and complications). Why does the body need such a dangerous substance – cholesterol ?! We have an answer!!!…

The paradox is that cholesterol is useful. Moreover, it is vital for the human body, as well as for other representatives of the animal world. Cholesterol is helpful. It is an integral component of the cell membranes of all animals. The role of cholesterol can only be assessed from the point of view of its role in the structure and reproduction of cells in the human body. Man is a multicellular being.

The human body consists of 60-65% water. Water is separated into cells by membranes of fats (cholesterol and phospholipids) and proteins. Fact: life is impossible without cholesterol. Figuratively, we can say that cholesterol is the “cement” in the construction of a multicellular house called our body. Like building a house in our body, cholesterol is a rigid framework, and walls are phospholipids and proteins. Cholesterol gives rigidity to cell and intracellular membranes, while phospholipids and proteins give elasticity and permeability (Fig. 1).
That is why egg yolk and caviar are called “cholesterol bombs”. They were invented by nature not to be eaten, but to continue the family of birds and fish. Immediately after conception, the fertilization of the egg, begins a “rapid building boom.” And it is at the start of the birth of a new life of “cement-cholesterol” that there should be a lot and nearby. By the way, these products also contain a lot of phospholipids and protein. “If you don’t have time to grow up quickly, you won’t take place as an organism at all.” Natural selection works ruthlessly….

It is well known that hypercholesterolemia (when the serum cholesterol level exceeds the upper threshold of 200 mg% or 5.18 mmol / l in adults) taking into account the lipid spectrum of low and high density lipoproteins) is a path to atherosclerosis. The prevalence in the population of hypercholesterolemia in different countries: in Japan – 7%, Italy – 13%, Greece – 14%, the Netherlands – 32%, USA – 39%, Finland – 56%, Ukraine – 25%. Hypocholesterolemia (low serum cholesterol levels (lower threshold less than 120 mg% or 1.5 mmol / l in adults) is also harmful!

Is cholesterol a friend?

Use of cholesterol: synthesis of cell membranes and intracellular organelles, as well as regulation of their permeability, synthesis of steroid and sex hormones, synthesis of bile acids, vitamin D, hematopoiesis through the reproduction of blood cells, renewal of mucous membranes, skin, liver through the reproduction of epithelial cells. Cholesterol deficiency (hypocholesterolemia) leads to a delay in the development and renewal of body cells, anemia and deficiency of cellular immunity, disorders in the genital area, and cancer. Physiological requirements for dietary cholesterol range from 300-400 mg/day depending on sex, body weight and age. The daily norm of 400 mg of cholesterol is contained in approximately 2 egg yolks.

Cholesterol: when is it a friend and when is it an enemy? The growth of body weight and the development of the human body (ontogenesis) also begin from the moment of fertilization of the egg and are a continuous progressive process that takes place throughout life. However, the increase in the mass of cells in an individual ends quite early. Growth and development are quantitative changes associated with an increase in body weight due to an increase in the number and size of cells. From fertilization to adulthood, the number of cells in the human body increases from 1 to 10 16-10 18. Alas, the growth of the human body ends by the age of 20-25!

The so-called first period of a person’s adulthood begins (for men 22-35 years old, for women 21-35 years old). It is at this time that the cessation of growth and the optimal development of the functional capabilities of the human body, as a biological individual, are noted. It’s unfortunate, but it is at the same time that the morphofunctional development of the organism ends – that same “construction boom”. After that, a gradual decrease in the intensity of functionality begins.

The role of the liver

Attention! The main “cement factory” for a growing organism is the liver. It synthesizes cholesterol, as well as other fats, from carbohydrates. But what happens after the body construction stops by the age of 30? Paradox! “Cement plant” does not stop production! The “flywheel” for the synthesis of cholesterol from glucose continues to rotate at the same speed. Liver enzymes continue to function as in youth. Cholesterol is released from the liver into the blood and bile. The name itself (chole – bile, sterol – fat (Greek)) cholesterol is due to bile. Overproduction of cholesterol occurs at this stage of development of the human body, as well as at all subsequent stages of development. Inevitable and inevitable. “The enemy is not in dietary cholesterol – the enemy is inside us, in our own liver!”

First of all, there comes the “filling of the warehouse of finished products with cholesterol” – the gallbladder. In the gallbladder, due to the concentration of bile at night, 10 times the excess cholesterol falls into crystals. First, it is stagnation of bile and flakes (sluge-sludge), and then stones and cholesterosis of the gallbladder in the form of pseudopolyps and impregnation of cholesterol esters of the wall of the gallbladder itself (polypous and reticular forms of cholesterosis).
This is especially true for a diseased liver. The “Winnie the Pooh syndrome” is realized (according to Dynnik O.B.): “The wrong liver produces the wrong bile.”

The next unpleasant moment is the increase in the concentration of “unused”, excess cholesterol in the blood serum – hypercholesterolemia. When the inner layer of the endothelium of the arteries (intima) is traumatized by episodes of high blood pressure (hypertension, arterial hypertension) or when endothelial membrane proteins are glycosylated during hyperglycemia (episodes of elevated blood glucose concentrations above 8 mmol / l), cholesterol penetrates into the sites of damage to the intima of the arteries. This is how the process of atherogenesis begins – the accumulation of cholesterol in the wall of arteries in the form of local atherosclerotic plaques.

In women, the processes of cholesterol consumption for the synthesis of sex hormones by the ovaries delay hypercholesterolemia and the process of atherogenesis by 8-10 years compared to men. But hypercholesterolemia during menopause equalizes the chances of men and women.

The main 3 “players” of atherogenesis: arterial hypertension, hypercholesterolemia and impaired carbohydrate tolerance are components of the metabolic syndrome. It is often called the “deadly quartet”, because, in combination with an increase in the level of uric acid in the blood serum, this combination leads to fatal consequences of the progress of atherosclerosis of the arteries of vital organs (heart, brain, kidneys).
It is possible and necessary, of course, according to medical indications, to use drugs of the statin group. They block the enzymes in the synthesis of cholesterol in the liver from glucose. But this leads to traumatization of hepatocyte membranes and a negative reaction of other enzyme systems of the liver. Figuratively, statins are “a crowbar inserted into the flywheel of cholesterol synthesis.” It is worth canceling the drug, “remove the crowbar from the flywheel”, and the synthesis of cholesterol in the liver begins with renewed vigor. Logic – if statins, then this is forever.

What to do?

The conclusion is simple and cruel in its biological truth.

If a person wants to live long and not suffer from cholesterol accumulation diseases, by the age of 25-30 he must change his attitude towards the exploitation of his body and, first of all, his attitude towards the liver. This means changing eating behavior (limiting not so much dietary cholesterol, but namely the raw materials for its synthesis in the liver – carbohydrates), adhere to the principles of the “Mediterranean diet”, include omega-3-containing foods in the diet and have adequate physical activity to regulate blood pressure, intimal endothelial training and “burning” of glucose, preventing its conversion in the liver into cholesterol and triglycerides. As the Japanese proverb says: “Every day a person needs to take 10,000 steps to health.”

The main slogan of the Institute of Elastography: “Man – save yourself!”

And we, the specialists of the Institute of Elastography, are ready to help anyone on the way to health!

Our multidisciplinary team at the Institute of Elastography knows what “metabolic syndrome” is and can diagnose it early and successfully treat it based on evidence-based medicine!

We perform early ultrasound diagnosis of arterial atherosclerosis: duplex Doppler scanning of the arteries of the head and neck, arteries of the lower extremities, measurement of the thickness of the intima-media complex (IMC), digital capillaroscopy (CCS).