The Cholesterol Misunderstanding

In diagnosing any disease pattern it is first and foremost important to look for the right things. For example you wouldn’t get very far by examining how best to treat skid marks left on the road from a car accident. The skid marks are of course a symptom of events leading up to the accident. The same holds true with heart disease. Looking at cholesterol is like focusing on the skid marks. Cholesterol acts as a protective layer much like a band-aid which rushes to the site of injury (inflammation) in the arteries, and if left long enough can build up and cause plaque. Well that is the short story at least. But the bottom line with heart disease is that we need to look at what is causing the problem in the first place. The most current medical research states that cholesterol itself only plays a minor role in heart disease. How long do you think it will take the mainstream medical establishment to catch up to the current research? I for one don’t want to wait and find out. I want to do everything in my power to avoid heart disease in the first place!

Very simply put, HDL and LDL are not cholesterol like you have all been taught. Cholesterol is cholesterol. HDL and LDL are proteins that carry cholesterol around the body. HDL carries it from the blood vessels back to the liver to be recycled and LDL carries cholesterol to the blood vessels and tissues to be used in a huge number of very important bodily functions. Without adequate cholesterol we couldn’t make hormones, or have a healthy nervous system. In fact we couldn’t repair our cells effectively and we would grow old really quickly! Now who wants that? We should love our cholesterol! Cholesterol is our friend. It keeps us healthy and happy.

The current cholesterol screens are simply not effective in determining risk because they fail to examine the actual HDL and LDL particles themselves. They do in fact lead to monumental sales of cholesterol lowering medications. That they do quite well. But it is the size and number of the HDL/LDL particles as well as several other factors that determines accurate risk for heart disease. We all know LDL is “bad” cholesterol right? But in fact only the smaller denser type LDL particles wreak havoc on the arteries. The larger ones tend to pass on by without hurting anything. It is also possible and quite common for people to have empty LDL particles and appear to be healthy on a routine cholesterol screen but die of suddenly heart disease. This happens about 50% of the time in fact. If you look closer you would probably see that these people were loaded with a bunch of empty dense type LDL particles. Their cholesterol was low but their risk was high. They have been failed by the system in place to protect them.

For people with PPO insurance we can order these tests for $30.00. For a $30.00 co-pay you can blow away what your doctor ordered for you. You can gain proper insight into your actual heart disease risk. You can see first hand everything that would be on a normal cholesterol screen plus the breakdown of the particle size, as well as a handful of other significant emerging risk factors all noted by current medical research. Call me soon and let’s schedule an appointment and find out for sure where you stand on your heart disease risk.