Whatâ€™s the nationâ€™s No. 1 killer of women? Heart disease. It causes one death every 35 seconds. Janet Bond Brill, a registered dietitian and author of Cholesterol Down (Three Rivers Press), shares 10 tips to reduce the bad stuff. Plus, test your heart-health IQ with our quiz...
Cholesterol and Heart Disease
In the annual physical, your doctor checks your cholesterol levels. But what is it? And what do the numbers say about your health?
Cholesterol is a type of lipid or fat. In our bodies, it travels through our blood stream in particles called lipoproteins. Low-density lipoproteins (LDL) are bad because they can lead to a buildup of plaque in arteries.
A mass of plaque can narrow your arteries and restrict blood flow â€“ much like trying to sip juice through a clogged straw. Eventually, the plaque ruptures and a blood clot forms, cutting off the flow of blood, oxygen and nutrients to the brain.
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