"Good" & "Bad" Cholesterol
Cholesterol is a necessary part of a well-functioning body, and plays a key role in regulating hormones, producing vitamin D and assisting with healthy digestion.
But too much cholesterol in the body can be dangerous. Having high levels of cholesterol in the blood doubles your chances of developing coronary heart disease, and increases the likelihood that you will suffer from a heart attack or stroke.
This is because having too much cholesterol in your blood causes a plaque to build up inside of your arteries. Over time, this plaque restrict blood flow to the affected area. Eventually, this plaque ruptures, causing blood clots to form on its surface.
When this plaque build up happens in the heart, the muscle becomes starved of oxygen, leading to angina and ultimately, a full-blown heart attack. Cholesterol build up can also cause plaque which stems the flow of blood to the brain, resulting in a stroke. As well, cholesterol can have a detrimental affect on other areas of your body, including your internal organs and limbs.
There is often no obvious signs that cholesterol is causing problems inside the body. A simple blood test can show whether or not you are at risk.