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The Good and the Bad Cholesterol

Contrary to what most people think, cholesterol is not entirely bad for you. There's also the good kind of cholesterol. High-density lipoprotein, often referred to as the “good cholesterol,” helps protect the nerves. It also produces certain hormones and helps create new cell tissue. This type of cholesterol is useful to our body. High levels of HDL, or good cholesterol, does not carry with it a higher risk of heart disease.

On the other hand, there is low-density lipoprotein, which is often referred to as the “bad cholesterol.” Too much LDL in the body carries a higher risk of heart disease. If you want to improve your cholesterol levels, you might want to focus on lowering your LDL levels and in raising your HDL levels.

To improve your cholesterol levels, you might want to start by engaging in physical activity. Ideally, you should exercise at least 30 minutes a day for at least four to six days a week. Exercise also helps reduce those excess pounds; being overweight is also a risk factor for heart disease.

Moreover, you should eat sensibly by indulging in fruits and veggies. Stay away from saturated or trans fats, which can be found in butter, coconut and palm oil, margarine and animal fats, among others. Also, you might want to bake, broil or roast your food instead of frying it.

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Welcome to our UpToDate library. The information shared below is provided to you as an educational and informational source only and is not intended to replace a medical examination or consultation, or medical advice given to you by a physician or medical professional.

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