Old 08-08-2010, 08:46 AM
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Default Cholesterol is good!

We are all taught to fear cholesterol. Any cholesterol is bad, right?
Well, did you know cholesterol is a good free-radical scavenger (antioxidant)? Probably not. In fact cholesterol is an extremely abundant substance, widely distributed throughout the body of a healthy person. Doesn't that alone make you suspect the drug industry story? Why would Nature put all the stuff there if it was bad? Sorry: I'm not buying it.
Cholesterol has a purpose. It is GOOD for us. Cholesterol is the precursor to lots of good hormones; the steroid group, including testosterone, estrogen and cortisol. Too much cortisol is bad for us but no cortisol, you die.
Cholesterol is needed for bile secretion; that aids digestion and is also a very crucial detox pathway for heavy metals.
It's an important "lipid" molecule that shows up in cell walls and membranes.
Cholesterol is part of neuron cells in the brain, forming the insulating myelin sheath. Without it, our brains would not be able to transmit electrical signals. In fact brain cholesterol is not removed from the brain by metabolism, so the amount and condition of brain cholesterol is a good marker for free-radical damage.
Never mind the "good" and "bad" cholesterol. It's all good! It's just the proportions that matter. LDL isn't "bad", it's just we don't need too much: HDL isn't "good", it's just that more seems better and it's not healthy to have below a certain level.
Yet everyone is taught that LDL cholesterol is bad and we must lower it at all costs. That's not what science really shows, actually. With the release of ENHANCE in 2008, a study showing that reductions in LDL cholesterol did not translate into improvements in atherosclerosis as measured by carotid IMT, it's time we let go of the "bad" LDL theory. Dr Rodney Hayward (University of Michigan, Ann Arbor), has stated categorically that the "current evidence supports ignoring LDL cholesterol altogether".
Of course the die-hards will go on mouthing the old myths for many years to come, attacking anyone who steps out of line.

What we do need to be concerned about is that oxidized cholesterol, especially the LDL faction, is quite toxic and pro-imflammatory. Only oxidized cholesterol is dangerous. You can have LOTS of cholesterol safely, if it is "pure". What we have to do is clean up our diet and lifestyle and get the protection of real anti-oxidants to stop from damaging cholesterol. Protect your cholesterol: it's precious!
Doctors give drugs of which they know little,
into bodies, of which they know less,
for diseases of which they know nothing at all.
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Old 08-08-2010, 12:08 PM
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If your cholesterol is high in the first place this is a good indicator for an improperly functioning liver. The liver is the body's cholesterol regulator. When cholesterol is low the liver synthesizes cholesterol. When it is too high the liver should break down excess cholesterol. I think lecithin is the component that breaks down the cholesterol. It ensures that fat and cholesterol remain solvent, so they can be washed from the system.

Any place in your body that you injure will flood with cholesterol as cholesterol is a healing agent for the body. Cholesterol does not flood an area nor deposit unless the area has been injured and inflamed. In the case of the arteries the cholesterol builds up when the source of inflammation is not removed such as chronically high homocysteine.

Your diet can interfere with the regulation of cholesterol. Foods containing sterols can interfere. Olive oil is high in sterols. These sterols have a high affinity for cholesterol and bind tightly with it in the intestines, preventing the absorption of some dietary cholesterol and reabsorption of bile cholesterol. This is not necessarily a bad thing, but can indicate that our high cholesterol may not come from diet. Not very much to worry about. As levels of dietary cholesterol increase, the production of cholesterol by the liver will decrease. As dietary cholesterol drops, the synthesis of cholesterol by the liver increases. This is all based upon everything working properly, which is often not the case. The thyroid plays a role in cholesterol metabolism too. When the thyroid is under-active inflammatory homocysteine can rise leading to arterial inflammation and plaque formation. That homocysteine is the enemy.

So at least liver and thyroid must be in good shape. Digestive bitters help to cleanse the liver. Oh dear. Here I am propagandizing bitters yet again.
- Jim
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Old 08-27-2010, 06:01 PM
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Interesting...both posts. I like what you say about "good" and "bad" cholesterol. If we keep putting too much emphasis on these labels, we may end up causing the opposite cholesterol imbalance! All of a sudden people will be trying to lower their HDL. Just stick to the basics. Nature intended our bodies to be able to balance themselves. The vast majority of reasons we can't balance ourselves "naturally" is because we try to balance ourselves unnaturally! That and the fact that 99% of the food we consume contains man made ingredients. If you think we are making "progress" by discovering all this new technology and chemicals...take a second look at it. We are de-naturalizing ourselves to the point where we are controlled by all these substances that never did occur in nature. Humans have the gift of intelligence and too often we use that gift against our own well-being.
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