Tag Archives: Cholesterol

The Link Between Cholesterol Levels and Heart Health

cholesterol levels and heart health

Learn about the link between cholesterol levels and heart health.

We all basically know that there is a link between cholesterol and heart health, but do you know why? The key is to separate the good from the bad and strike a balance for optimal heart health. Today, we’re going to tell you how to do that.

Cholesterol and Your Heart 

Cholesterol is a waxy substance that naturally exists in our veins, flowing through our bodies inside our blood. It’s an essential substance that helps our body to build healthy cells. Too much cholesterol; however, can have the opposite effect, building up in our arteries and increasing your risk of heart disease.

Cholesterol Dangers

People who have high levels of cholesterol in their blood are at risk for many health problems, including heart disease (including heart attack) and stroke. What happens is the waxy substance starts to build up on the sides of your blood vessels. Over time, the build-up starts to affect how efficiently blood can pass through your veins. It may block it completely or come loose, forming a clot and causes a heart attack or stroke.

Who’s at Risk?

There are many studies that suggest a genetic link between cholesterol levels and heart health. If you have a family history of heart disease, it’s important for you to pay close attention to your cholesterol levels. A healthy diet, regular exercise, using heart healthy supplements, and yearly visits to your doctor are all things that you can do to help treat and prevent heart disease.

Types of Cholesterol 

So, the confusing thing is that there are two types of cholesterol, and one you actually need to support heart health. Once you understand how to identify the good over the bad, the easier it will be to make healthier choices for your heart.

HDL Cholesterol (Good) – Healthy levels may protect you against heart attack and stroke. HDL is responsible for carrying bad cholesterol away from the heart and depositing it in the liver for disposal.

LDL Cholesterol (Bad) – This is the type that leaves fatty build-ups in your arteries, causing them to narrow and lead to potentially life threatening conditions such as heart attack and stroke.

Increasing Heart Health

Every choice you make towards improving your heart health makes a difference. Here are some examples of foods to focus on and avoid.

Food that are Heart Healthy – High HDL, Low LDL

  • Oats and barley
  • Beans and Lentils
  • Nuts (Walnuts, Peanuts, and Almonds)
  • Fatty Fish (Sardines, Mackerel, and Salmon)
  • Olive Oil
  • Citrus Fruits
  • Apples
  • Strawberries and Grapes
  • Okra
  • Eggplant
  • Soybeans

Food that are Not Heart Healthy – High LDL, Low HDL

  • Baked Sweets (Donuts, Cakes, Cookies, and Pastries)
  • Lard And Shortening
  • Most Fried Foods
  • Most Fast Foods
  • Whole Fat Dairy (Butter, Milk, Cheese, and Cream)
  • Fatty Red Meat
  • Highly Processed Meat
  • Fatty Poultry

It’s clear that there is a link between cholesterol levels and heart health. It may be hard at first to change your eating habits, but it gets easier the more you try. Nutritional supplements may help fill in gaps in your diet. For starters, try CholestPro or CholestePure by Professional Supplement Center.

What kinds of things do you do to increase your heart health? Tell us in the comments below.

The Dangers of High Cholesterol: What You Need to Know

dangers of high cholesterol

Learn about the dangers of high cholesterol.

The dangers of high cholesterol are real. But, many people either don’t pay attention to the warnings, or don’t realize how their lifestyle choices may have a negative impact on their health, one that can have serious consequences. Let’s focus on how to become more aware of your cholesterol intake and how to treat it if it is high.

What is Cholesterol?

Cholesterol is a waxy substance that is naturally made by your liver. Your body needs it to build cells, meaning it’s crucial to our health. We also get cholesterol from the foods we eat, most notably from meat and dairy products. The problems with cholesterol start when we take in more cholesterol through our diet than we need. This can cause narrowing of the arteries which constricts blood flow and make your heart work harder than it’s supposed to.

There are two types of cholesterol that you need to be aware of:

Low-Density Lipoprotein (LDL) – This is the type of cholesterol that can form fatty wax deposits known as plaques in your arteries, putting you at risk of heart disease and stroke. The plaque in your arteries begins to build up and the arteries start to harden, causing them to narrow, which blocks the blood flow in and out of your heart. When you hear people refer to “bad” cholesterol, they are referring to LDL.

High-Density Lipoprotein (HDL) – This is known as the “good” cholesterol. HDL cholesterol is essential to the healthy function of your body. It transports excess cholesterol through our blood to our liver, so that they can be removed from the body.

Regulating Your Cholesterol

So, now that you know the good and the bad of how cholesterol works in our bodies, how do you make sure you are lowering the bad, while keeping the good? Well, there are a number of factors that can lead to high cholesterol. Some we can control, others not so much.

Here are the most common factors leading to high cholesterol:

  • High cholesterol runs in your family (it can be genetic)
  • Being overweight
  • Not exercising regularly
  • Smoking cigarettes
  • Eating foods loaded in saturated fat and cholesterol (such as full-fat dairy products, butter, and fatty meat)
  • Age

The first step in regulating your cholesterol is visiting your doctor to have yours tested. There are no symptoms of high cholesterol, so you’ll need to be your own advocate.

Lowering Cholesterol

If it turns out that your cholesterol is high, here are some things you can do to help lower it:

  • Eat a diet low in salt with lots of fruits, vegetables and whole grains.
  • Quit smoking.
  • Lose excess pounds and maintain a healthy body weight.
  • Avoid foods high in animal fats and use good fats in moderation.
  • Use cholesterol supporting supplements such as CholestStall by Zahler.
  • Exercise regularly for at least 30 minutes.
  • Limit alcohol consumption.
  • Manage stress (try meditation or relaxation with essential oils).
  • Take a high quality daily multivitamin.

High cholesterol is definitely something you want to stay on top of. After age 40, men and women should have their cholesterol levels checked annually. Staying on top of your cholesterol before you have problems is as easy as making a few lifestyle changes that could potentially lead to a happier, healthier life in the future.

The Importance of Healthy Liver Function

LiverHealthJacquie Eubanks RN BSN

Did you know that the liver is the only organ that can regenerate itself, making it possible for one person to donate a portion of their liver, which will then regenerate to full size, to another person? This large and metabolically complex organ is so resilient it can continue to function when two-thirds of it has been damaged by cirrhosis or injury. Because of this amazing ability to repair itself, those who have or are developing liver problems may be completely unaware and have no noticeable symptoms. Vitally important to life and health, the liver performs over 500 different functions relating to metabolism, digestion, immunity and nutrient storage.

Metabolism of macronutrients – The liver is central to all metabolic processes, and plays a critical role in synthesizing protein, fat and carbohydrate molecules that are utilized by the body to support homeostasis and regulate energy balance.

Digestion – The liver plays an active role in digestion though its production of bile, which is stored in the gallbladder until needed to emulsify fats, turning large clumps into smaller absorbable pieces. Bile contains bilirubin, formed by the breakdown of heme in aging red blood cells, which is then eliminated by the body.

Glycogen – Blood entering the liver is extremely rich in glucose. Glucose is stored in the liver as glycogen and is released as needed to maintain homeostasis and balanced blood sugar, releasing or removing sugar from the bloodstream when blood levels are too high or too low.

Detoxification – As blood from the digestive organs flows through the liver, it monitors the contents and prevents the release of toxins into the body. Liver enzymes metabolize numerous environmental toxins, foreign substances, alcohol, drugs, and circulation hormones and renders them into inactive metabolites, which can then be excreted by the body.

Micronutrient Storage – In addition to glycogen storage, the liver stores many essential nutrients, including fatty acids, vitamins A, D, E, K, and B12, as well as iron and copper.

Immunity – The liver contains cells that capture and digest bacteria, fungi, parasites, old blood cells and other cellular debris, effectively and quickly cleansing large volumes of blood. The liver produces immune factors associated with the inflammation response, tissue repair and immune cell activities.

Blood clotting – Together with vitamin K, the liver produces plasma proteins, necessary for blood clotting.

Cholesterol – While high cholesterol has been demonized as a risk factor for cardiovascular disease, it’s an important component of cell membranes. The liver produces one to two grams of cholesterol daily, which is necessary for vitamin D, steroid hormone and bile acid production. Cholesterol is a precursor to anabolic hormones related to muscle growth and repair and is the basis for other reproductive hormones.

The liver is vulnerable to the effects of stress, toxin exposure and highly processed foods. A nourishing, fiber-filled, whole food, antioxidant-rich, anti-inflammatory diet and regular exercise supports the health of the liver and proper liver function. Be cautious about alcohol consumption, as alcohol can damage or destroy liver cells and can lead to fatty liver disease, inflammation and cirrhosis. Carefully manage all prescription medications and strictly follow dosing instructions. Some OTC cold and headache medications have been found to be harmful to the liver, so avoid taking anything unnecessarily. As much as possible reduce stress on the liver by avoiding exposure to chemicals and toxins found in home and beauty products. Certain herbs and botanicals believed to support liver health and function include milk thistle, schisandra, turmeric and dandelion root.

Professional Supplement Center carries these and other high quality products formulated to support healthy liver function:

Lipotropic Complex by Integrative Therapeutics

Lipotropic Complex by Integrative Therapeutics – This product provides vitamins, minerals, bile salts and standardized herbal extracts in support of healthy liver function and overall wellbeing. Gluten, soy and dairy free formulation.


Liver Defend by NuMedicaLiver Defend™ by NuMedica – Four key ingredients provide targeted nutritional support for enhanced liver protection and defense. This product is formulated for powerful antioxidant and detoxification support. Gluten, soy and dairy free, vegetarian formulation.


Turmeric Strength for Liver by MegaFoodTurmeric Strength for Liver by MegaFood – This product delivers a proprietary blend of whole food and concentrated herbal antioxidant compounds in support to healthy liver function and detoxifying pathways. Formulated with turmeric, milk thistle, schisandra fruit and black pepper extract. Gluten, soy and lactose free, Non-GMO vegan formulation.


Complete Liver Cleanse by Enzymatic TherapyComplete Liver Cleanse by Enzymatic Therapy – This 2-week liver cleansing system provides natural liver support, and features herbal ingredients to stimulate bile flow and help remove toxins. Dairy, wheat and sugar free, vegetarian formulation.



Liver Health. http://www.liver.ca/liver-health/
Liver Health and Wellness. http://www.liverfoundation.org/abouttheliver/liverhealth/
Metabolic Functions of the Liver. http://www.vivo.colostate.edu/hbooks/pathphys/digestion/liver/metabolic.html
Liver. http://www.innerbody.com/image_digeov/card10-new2.html
How does the liver work? http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmedhealth/PMH0072577/
Normal Liver Physiology. http://biomed.brown.edu/Courses/BI108/BI108_2002_Groups/liver/webpage/NormalLiver.htm