Cholesterol, Heart Disease and Current Research

25d465b60656ea926d32_Hearth-Health-600x600.jpg
25d465b60656ea926d32_Hearth-Health-600x600.jpg

Statistically, 50% of people seen in the emergency room with a heart attack have “normal” cholesterol levels. That’s right- normal cholesterol levels! Let’s look at the all the indicators in your cholesterol “number” to find out how this could possibly happen.

First, prevention of cardiovascular disease it is not as simple lowering your cholesterol levels to under 180. Your total cholesterol number is actually a combination of several different components or fractions some of which reduce and others increase your risk of heart disease.

To start, there are 2 main subdivisions of your total cholesterol level: HDL cholesterol is considered “good” as it reduces inflammation and plaque build-up in your blood vessels and LDL cholesterol is considered “bad” as it promotes the build-up of arterial plaque and hardening of the arteries. But there is a lot more to the story.

Sign Up for E-News

There are other fractions of cholesterol that are more intricate markers of your risk for cardiovascular disease and stroke. Current research is trending to using a more comprehensive lipid panel to indicate your real risk for heart disease. These lab markers include:

  • VLDL
  • LDL P
  • HDL-P
  • LP-PLA2
  • Lipoprotein a
  • Particle size
  • Apo Fractions

The bottom line an analysis of your complete cholesterol (lipid) profile with all sub-fractions is essential. Pharmaceuticals and nutraceuticals both help to balance these markers; however, it often includes the incorporation of diet and lifestyle modification, to optimize your good cholesterol fractions.

A major problem is when  cholesterol becomes “oxidized” due to inflammation.  In an oxidized state it actually becomes sticky and adheres to blood vessel walls creating plaque build-up and hardening of the arteries. Again, there are specific lab tests for inflammation, the most common being: hs-CRP, fibrinogen, and homocysteine. A comprehensive lab assessment of your cardiovascular risk would need to include these variables.

A third challenge driving increased cardiovascular disease is insulin resistance, or pre-diabetes. Current research indicates insulin resistance can be determined by the ratios of the different cholesterol markers mentioned above. Again, a good reason to get a full lipid panel test.

The final step would be to look at the size and number of your cholesterol particles as a predictor of cardio-vascular risk. Keeping it simple, less but large particle size is better than many but small particles. Imagine the large fluffy cholesterol particles just floating around, hanging out so to speak, whereas the small particle size molecules are like bullets bouncing around at high speed and create more damage. So get that particle size checked and make them fluffy!

As for number, think of a 5 lbs sack of potatoes. It could have 3 Idaho potatoes in the sack, or 25 fingerling potatoes! More cholesterol particles means more risk.

At this point it is important to realize that every cell in your body needs cholesterol and your liver makes cholesterol for every cell in the body. So your body will always make cholesterol, the goal becomes to make big, fluffy cholesterol particles that are mostly in the HDL category.

A cholesterol lowering diet consists of green and colored vegetables, raw nuts, (especially almonds), vegetable protein, lean meat, fish, beans, and soluble fiber (oats, wheat bran, apples). A modified Mediterranean diet, with reduced saturated fats, restricted sugars and minimal grains is excellent. In fact, a 21 day diet (the SP Purification Program) has shown to dramatically reduce cholesterol levels.

Cholesterol management is more than just getting your LDL level to 180 or less or simply taking niacin or a statin drug. It is about knowing all or your cholesterol fractions, their ratios, and the particle size and addressing them individually. Lifestyle factors, diet, exercise, pharmaceuticals and nutraceuticals all play a role is obtaining an optimum cholesterol profile to reduce your risk for heart disease – use them judiciously.

Dr. Donald DeFabio is a dual board certified Chiropractic Physician in Berkeley Heights, NJ and author of Health Management: The DeFabio Difference. He is the Director of DeFabio Spine and Sports Rehab, LLC where Acupuncture, Chiropractic, Nutrition, and Personal Training are integrated for a comprehensive approach to your health management. The office may be reached at DeFabioChiropractic@gmail.com  or  www.DeFabioChiropractic.com.

The opinions expressed herein are the writer's alone, and do not reflect the opinions of TAPinto.net or anyone who works for TAPinto.net. TAPinto.net is not responsible for the accuracy of any of the information supplied by the writer.

TAP Into Another Town's News:

You May Also Be Interested In

Sign Up for E-News

Berkeley Heights

Sleep out at Covenant House

June 18, 2018

I can enjoy the same movies over and over like it were the first time to see them.  My kids roll their eyes at this.  Well, many unimaginable things happen as you become a certain age, and you tend to learn to accept those things graciously as gift.   But I remember the movie “The Blind Side.”  Until I saw that movie, I didn’t know homeless children ...

eMedical Urgent Care to Hold Free Teddy Care Clinic During Berkeley Heights Street Fair, Sunday, June 24

June 22, 2018

BERKELEY HEIGHTS, NJ  – What happens when a teddy bear gets a boo-boo?
Children will learn how minor ailments are treated during eMedical Urgent Care’s Teddy Bear Clinic during the Berkeley Heights Street Fair on Sunday, June 24.

At the office, located at 369 Springfield Avenue, children under 8 will receive a FREE plush teddy bear, and staff will provide each bear with a ...

The Grove at Connell Park Hosts a Home for Good Dog Rescue Adoption Event: Wednesday, June 27

BERKELEY HEIGHTS, NJ - Home for Good Dog Rescue presents an adoption event from 11:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. on Wednesday, June 27 at The Grove at Connell Park located on Connell Drive in Berkeley Heights. (Rain Date June 28)

Click here to apply to adopt: bit.ly/HFGadopt

About Home for Good Dog Rescue: Home for Good Dog Rescue (HFGDR) is a 100 percent foster-based, non-profit ...

Moms Helping Moms Foundation Receives Overwhelming Support from Community to Help Mothers this Mother’s Day

Mother’s Day is often celebrated by showering the women in our lives with beautiful flowers, heartfelt cards, and taking them on special outings to show them how much they mean to us. Yet, for many low-income mothers living in our community, they struggle each day to provide the basics for their babies.

Diapers are a necessity yet one in three families in the United States lack an ...

New Providence Recreation Offers Adult Summer Programs

New Providence Recreation is accepting registrations for adult evening and daytime programs that run June 25th – August 31st.  Most of the eight to nine-week sessions are under $65; several programs are free for NP residents!  All levels of fitness and those returning to exercise are welcome.

Programs are offered starting at 6 a.m.. If you are seeking weight loss, core body ...

Missing in North Plainfield: Have You Seen Angel?

June 21, 2018

NORTH PLAINFIELD, NJ - Have you seen Angel?

Angel is a seven year old black and white Husky last seen near Westervelt Ave. and Manning Ave. on June 16. Her family says she is very friendly. 

If found, call Andrea at  888-466-3242.

 

Linden Man Arrested After Explosion in Cranford

June 21, 2018

CRANFORD - On Wednesday, June 20, 2018 at 7:06 p.m. the Cranford Police Department received
information that an explosion was heard in the area of Raritan Road and Summit Terrace. Through
a joint investigation with the Union County Prosecutor's Office and Linden Police Department, the
Cranford Police Department Detective Bureau identified a suspect through surveillance video ...

What's Hot and What's Not

Summer is a great time to take a step back, sip a cool beverage, and take a look at what’s going on in the world of college admissions.  Departments use the summer to evaluate how their year went and plan on any changes they want to make for the fall.  Did they over-enroll? Under-enroll?  What application materials were useful to them?  Which were redundant or time ...

Cool Ways to Save Money This Summer

As the summer temperatures rise, home cooling costs rise as well. But there are ways to help save money without sweating the heat:

To increase your cooling system’s efficiency by as much as 20%, get it checked out for summer.  A technician will clean the condenser, make sure you have the optimal amount of refrigerant, and ensure the airflow over the coil is ...