You raise an interesting question. Back in 1994, the American Heart Association Task Force on Cholesterol Issues put out a statement entitled “Very Low Cholesterol and Cholesterol Lowering” which noted that there is an increase in deaths from trauma, cancer, hemorrhagic stroke and respiratory and infectious diseases among those with total cholesterol levels less than 160 mg/dl. However, a substantial portion of those deaths seemed to be due to poor health unrelated to low cholesterol. Since then, several s
I took an informal survey of my patients this week and asked the question, what does cholesterol do in our bodies?
I got a variety of answers. Most people simply had no idea why we have cholesterol in our bodies. Almost all of the answers centered around the idea that cholesterol kills people because it causes heart disease.
This isn’t necessarily the case. In fact, you may be quite surprised how essential this long misunderstood substance actually is.
For starters, cholesterol is essential in every cell of our body. It is critical for the support of the cell walls. It is a large portion of the myelin covering of nerves. This covering allows for proper nerve transmission. This is of great importance to chiropractors. Proper nerve transmission is how the master system (the brain) gets everything done. Without proper control from the brain, our body simply cannot be healthy.
Are you interested in digesting fat properly? Cholesterol is key to bile (the detergent in the colon used to digest fats). What about building hormones like testosterone, estrogen and cortisol? Again, cholesterol. Do you want to create Vitamin D from the sun? You’re going to need some cholesterol.
Would you be interested in a strong antioxidant that can reduce inflammation? You guessed it…cholesterol.
Cholesterol is not an enemy. In February of 2015 the USDA reversed its decades long position, declaring cholesterol to no longer be a “nutrient of concern”. In other words, your dietary intake of cholesterol is no longer the concern is was earlier thought to be. (The real villain here is sugar).
So what does Cholesterol do?
- It builds the body
- It reduces inflammation
- Aids in digestion
- Makes the nervous system function
- And a lot more.
Cholesterol does a lot. In the coming weeks we will explore this fascinating topic. Stay tuned to this site and subscribe to my Wellness newsletter for the latest.
Abstract Cholesterol in the mammalian brain is a risk factor for certain neurodegenerative diseases, raising the question of its normal function. In the mature brain, the highest cholesterol content is found in myelin. We therefore created mice that lack the ability to synthesize cholesterol in myelin-forming oligodendrocytes. Mutant oligodendrocytes survived, but CNS myelination was severely perturbed, and mutant mice showed ataxia and tremor. CNS myelination continued at a reduced rate for many months, an
The nation’s top nutrition advisory panel has decided to drop its caution about eating cholesterol-laden food, a move that could undo almost 40 years of government warnings about its consumption. The group’s finding that cholesterol in the diet need no longer be considered a “nutrient of concern” stands in contrast to the committee’s findings five years ago, the last time it convened. During those proceedings, as in previous years, the panel deemed the issue of excess cholesterol in the American diet a pub