Petrous (word of the day)- Its means, something, as hard as a stone and meets the requirements of our blog post today- Cholesterol Plaque, killer deposits that could lead to serious heart condition.

CholeterolFirst the dental plaque: Dental plaque is a film or mass of bacteria that grows on surfaces within the mouth. It appears or can be identifies as a while/pale yellow “ Layer of Slime ” found between two teeth. This may appear dark brown or black in case some smokers and individuals who may refrain from regular dental check-ups or cleaning (scaling) as and when required.

A dental plaque deposit gets harder with time if not treated (scaled out timely) and occasionally your dentist may need a 90 bend tool to scrape or pull this thing between your through to get this stone hard thing away from you, leaving you bleeding but smiling eventually.

Unfortunately, the case is not at all close or sort of difficult when a plaque is of a cholesterol origin. You guessed it right, cholesterol, is a product of the heart disease. They take much longer to grow in the arteries (blood vessels). These stone hard cholesterol material deposits cling to the walls of the arteries and later grow inwards to block the flow of blood and can take years to claim there space in the blood pipes that feed the heart.

The other problem with these petrous pieces of chemicals, collectively called as made up of cholesterol can rupture making blood around it to clot in just about very short span in time. This clot can obstruct the canal of blood and cause serious heart attacks or these clots could then travel to the brain (fed by the heart) to cause strokes. I am sure you remember an old post where we differentiated the strokes and explained its management as a heart disease or a neurological disorder.

Remaining at the cholesterol point, it is pronounced as (koh LESS tur all), a fatty substance found only in animal tissues. Plasma, the liquid portion of blood, is composed of , Water (90%), Inorganic substances (calcium, potassium, sodium), Organic substances (glucose, amino acids, fats, cholesterol, hormones), Waste products (urea, uric acid, ammonia, creatinine, Plasma proteins (serum albumin, serum globulin, and two clotting proteins fibrinogen and prothrombin), too much from, something to go wrong across the chemistries!

Lipid Profile– Is a Blood test to measure the lipids (cholesterol and triglycerides) in the circulating blood. A sample test report could like one I have pasted below (Courtesy Shiland):

Lipid Profile

Here are types of cholesterol. The ones talked about most are:

  • Total cholesterol – all the cholesterols combined
  • High density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol – often called “good” cholesterol
  • Low density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol – often called “bad” cholesterol

For many people, abnormal cholesterol levels are partly due to an unhealthy lifestyle. This often includes eating a diet that is high in fat.

Other lifestyle factors are:

  • Being overweight
  • Lack of exercise

Some health conditions can also lead to abnormal cholesterol, including:

  • Diabetes
  • Kidney disease
  • Polycystic ovary syndrome
  • Pregnancy and other conditions that increase levels of female hormones
  • Underactive thyroid gland

On a remarkable finding (not abnormal) One, can take help of physicians who make use of antihyperlipidemics: lower “bad” and or raise “good” cholesterol levels to reduce the risk of heart attack or stroke. There are five different types: fibrates (gemfibrozil), HMG-CoA reductase inhibitors or “statins” (simvastatin), bile acid sequestrants (cholestyramine), niacin, and ezetimibe.

Simple pathology of how cholesterol may get into ones blood is that, it’s the liver that filters and stores blood and forms a substance called bile, which emulsifies (ee MUL sih fyez), or mechanically breaks down, fats into smaller particles so that they can be chemically digested. Bile is composed of bilirubin (BILL ee roo bin), the waste product formed by the normal breakdown of hemoglobin in red blood cells at the end of their life spans, and cholesterol.

Here are many types of cholesterol. The ones talked about most are:

  • Total cholesterol – all the cholesterols combined
  • High density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol – often called “good” cholesterol
  • Low density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol – often called “bad” cholesterol

For many people, abnormal cholesterol levels are partly due to an unhealthy lifestyle. This often includes eating a diet that is high in fat. Other lifestyle factors are:

  • Being overweight
  • Lack of exercise

Some health conditions can also lead to abnormal cholesterol, including:

  • Diabetes
  • Kidney disease
  • Polycystic ovary syndrome
  • Pregnancy and other conditions that increase levels of female hormones
  • Underactive thyroid gland

Thinking how to close this vast topic close to my post graduation work on strokes, I felt nothing was more simple and straight forward than an advise at NIH with TLC.

TLC is a set of things you can do to help lower your LDL cholesterol. The main parts of TLC are:

  • The TLC Diet. This is a low-saturated-fat, low-cholesterol eating plan that calls for less than 7percent of calories from saturated fat and less than 200 mg of dietary cholesterol per day. The TLC diet recommends only enough calories to maintain a desirable weight and avoid weight gain. If your LDL is not lowered enough by reducing your saturated fat and cholesterol intakes, the amount of soluble fiber in your diet can be increased. Certain food products that contain plant stanols or plant sterols (for example, cholesterol-lowering margarines) can also be added to the TLC diet to boost its LDL-lowering power.
  • Weight Management. Losing weight if you are overweight can help lower LDL and is especially important for those with a cluster of risk factors that includes high triglyceride and/or low HDL levels and being overweight with a large waist measurement (more than 40 inches for men and more than 35 inches for women).
  • Physical Activity. Regular physical activity (30 minutes on most, if not all, days) is recommended for everyone. It can help raise HDL and lower LDL and is especially important for those with high triglyceride and/or low HDL levels who are overweight with a large waist measurement.

Foods low in saturated fat include fat-free or 1percent dairy products, lean meats, fish, skinless poultry, whole grain foods, and fruits and vegetables. Look for soft margarines (liquid or tub varieties) that are low in saturated fat and contain little or no trans fat (another type of dietary fat that can raise your cholesterol level). Limit foods high in cholesterol such as liver and other organ meats, egg yolks, and full-fat dairy products.

Good sources of soluble fiber include oats, certain fruits (such as oranges and pears) and vegetables (such as brussels sprouts and carrots), and dried peas and beans.

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