What are LDL and HDL?
LDL cholesterol stands for low density lipoprotein and is usually considered a bad cholesterol. It is bad because it gives an increased risk of plaque build up. HDL stands for high density lipoprotein and is usually considered a good cholesterol. It is good because it takes cholesterol to the liver to be disposed of.
LDL and HDL Structure and Function
LDL is made of about 50% cholesterol and 25% protein and is much smaller and denser than HDL. HDL is about 20% cholesterol and 50% protein and is larger and less dense. The function of LDL is to carry cholesterol to different parts of the body. The function of HDL is to take cholesterol to the liver to be disposed of.
Why Doctors Monitor LDL and HDL
Doctors monitor LDL and HDL because their levels in blood help doctors evaluate your health status. It also tells them if you are at risk for a cardiovascular disease.
How are Contractions Assosieted With Heart Disease?
High levels of LDL can lead to atherosclerosis ( a disease of the arteries characterized by the deposition of plaques of fatty material on their inner walls) which can lead to heart disease. But, HDL can lower your risk of heart disease.
Other Molecules Monitored
- Blood Sugar Levels
- Total Cholesterol
Results of Cholesterol Test
The results of a cholesterol test tell you your total blood cholesterol level.
Change Levels of LDL and HDL in Blood
Some ways to change LDL levels in blood is to eat a healthy diet with reduced fat, be physically active, and medication can also be used.
How Does Intake of Fat Affect Cholesterol Levels?
Too much unsaturated, saturated, and trans fats can cause an increase in LDL. This could lead to arterial hardening.