Cholesterol

Despite any claims that cholesterol is needed in our food, it’s not…

 

Paula Urkanis bruice, “Essential Organic Chemistry — 2nd Edition,” “Cholesterol is synthesized in the liver and is also found in almost all body tissues. Cholesterol is found in many foods, but we do not require it in our diet because the body can synthesize all we need. A diet high in cholesterol can lead to high levels of cholesterol in the bloodstream, and the excess can accumulate on the walls of arteries, restricting the flow of blood.”

This disease of the circulatory system is known as atherosclerosis and is a primary cause of heart disease. Cholesterol travels through the bloodstream packaged in particles that are classified according to their density. Low-density lipoprotein (LDL) particles transport cholesterol from the liver to other tissues. Receptors on the surfaces of cells bind LDL particles, allowing them to be brought into the cell so that it can use the cholesterol. High-density lipoprotein (HDL) is a cholesterol scavenger, removing cholesterol from the surfaces of membranes and delivering it back to the liver, where it is converted into bile acids. LDL is the so called “bad” cholesterol, whereas HDL is the “good” cholesterol. The more cholesterol we eat, the less the body synthesizes. But this doesn’t mean that dietary cholesterol has no effect on the total amount of cholesterol in the bloodstream, because dietary cholesterol also inhibits the synthesis of the LDL receptors. So the more cholesterol we eat, the less the body synthesizes.                                                                                                                           

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