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By Duncan Reeve, Peak of Wellbeing

Why people have high cholesterol levels and what does it mean?

Cholesterol’s main job in the body is to clear up inflammation. It does many other things, but this is one of it’s main roles. So if a person has high cholesterol levels, it means that their body is inflamed. Inflammation tends to be in the gut or digestive system.

Without inflammation, cholesterol would move freely through the body. In fact, the body actually produces 12 eggs worth of cholesterol daily in the liver!  However, inflammation in the body causes the cholesterol to become trapped. Inflammation is your body’s natural defense to an invader such as bacteria, toxins or virus. If we constantly expose the body to large amounts of toxins and foods the body was never designed to eat, we create chronic inflammation. Same applies to cholesterol.

Although a lot of people are eating low fat diets with very little meat, a huge percentage of the population are taking cholesterol lowering drugs and heart disease is at an all time high.

vegtables cholesterol 

The biggest culprits of chronic inflammation

What are the biggest culprits of chronic inflammation? Quite simply, they are the overload of simple, highly processed carbohydrates (sugar, flour and all the products made from them) and the excess consumption of omega-6 vegetable oils like soybean, corn and sunflower that are found in many processed foods.
Our usual, Western, diet has produced an extreme imbalance of these two fats. The ratio of imbalance ranges from 15:1 to as high as 30:1 in favor of omega-6. That’s a tremendous amount causing inflammation. In today’s food environment, a 3:1 ratio would be optimal and healthy.

There is no escaping the fact that the more we consume prepared and processed foods, the more we trip the inflammation switch little by little each day. The human body cannot process, nor was it designed to consume, foods packed with sugars and soaked in omega-6 oils.
 
Anti inflammatory foods

Animal fats contain less than 20% omega-6 and are much less likely to cause inflammation than the supposedly healthy oils labelled polyunsaturated. Forget the “science” that has been drummed into your head for decades. The science that saturated fat alone causes heart disease is non-existent. The science that saturated fat raises blood cholesterol is also very weak.

What you can do is choose whole foods your grandmother served and not those your mother turned to as grocery store aisles filled with manufactured foods. By eliminating inflammatory foods and adding essential nutrients from fresh unprocessed food, you will reverse years of damage in your arteries, reduce your cholesterol and reduce inflammation throughout your body.

Sign-up to our Body Shape Workshops in January to find out more about the foods that your body is designed to eat and that can benefit your health in various ways.

Images by bizior, gozdeo and MFinderup

Author's bio

duncan_bioDuncan Reeve is one of the co founders of Peak Of Wellbeing. He has been in the health, fitness and wellbeing industry for over 12 years at varying levels i.e. providing gym floor, personal training, manual therapy and massage, group exercise classes.

Duncan is also a C.H.E.K Practitioner, Corrective Exercise Specialist, Holistic Lifestyle Coach and Golf Performance Specialist, and has trained extensively under the CHEK Training scheme for the last 12 years. He is now part of Team CHEK, teaching and presenting CHEK programmes throughout Europe and the UK. The CHEK system is a ‘whole’ body approach, which means a practitioner looks at the way an individual moves, breathes, eats, sleeps, thinks and hydrates.

Acclaimed for his passionate and enthusiastic teaching style and willingness to share knowledge, Duncan is an avid golfer and cricketer and works with many sports men and women, including golfers, from professionals to amateurs, as well as designing health and wellbeing programmes for all types of individuals.

He works with clients in Europe and the UK on a one to one basis, in small groups and via workshops, and his specialist areas include:

1. Golf Performance Conditioning
2. Back Pain & Core Strengthening
3. Rehabilitation & Corrective Exercise

Duncan Reeve, Dip. Sports Therapy, Premier Personal Training, Master CHEK Practitioner Level 3, CHEK HLC L3, CMTA and Golf Performance Specialist.