What is High Density Lipoprotein?

Did the doctor just read you some numbers and tell you that your HDL cholesterol levels were a bit high? That made them happy, but you were a bit confused. Don’t you want your cholesterol levels to be low? The short answer is yes, but you want HDL cholesterol to be at a higher number. There are two types of cholesterol in your body, HDL and LDL.

HDL Cholesterol

What is HDL? It stands for high density lipoprotein. This is the good kind of cholesterol in your system. The HDL cholesterol actually helps you fight against the bad LDL cholesterol in your system. There will always be HDL and LDL cholesterol in your blood stream, but more of one kind can help lower the other kind. It can also keep you healthier. The HDL cells are in the bloodstream and can eat away or eliminate the bad LDL cells in the blood. Having more HDL in your system can prevent heart disease and keep you away from medicines that would do the same thing in your bloodstream.

Choose Your Diet

When you choose a low cholesterol diet, it is one that is low in fats and calories so you can lose weight and reduce your cholesterol. That type of cholesterol to reduce is the HDL numbers. But while you want to reduce the LDL, you might want to increase HDL numbers. It sounds tricky, but with a careful diet, you can easily do so.

The foods rich in HDL include fish like salmon and tuna. However, you will want to bake or grill the fix and not prepare it with a heavy cream sauce like sour cream or mayo based, which not only adds calories, but puts back in the bad HDL cholesterol. Other foods that are good to eat include onions, garlic and fruit. Lots of fruits and vegetables are a great way to keep your caloric intake low and to make sure you aren’t consuming fats.

You can still eat foods with LDL cholesterol in them, or the products that turn in to LDL cholesterol in your system, but do so in moderation. And when you do, make sure to have a balanced diet and to exercise so that cholesterol does not stay in your system. Some fat is needed for the body work correctly, it is when it is eaten in excess that it does harm.