What Is Cholesterol?

Cholesterol is an organic molecule, a sterol or a modified steroid and a type of lipid. This is a type of fat that is found in blood and this is produced by the liver for the body. Cholesterol can also be found in the foods that we usually eat like meat, fish, cheese, butter, milk, and others. Cholesterol is also a major component of all cell membranes like hormones, fat-soluble vitamins and bile acids that aid us in our digestion of food.

Too much cholesterol in the blood can increase your risk of having a heart attack, stroke, and other problems but not all cholesterol is bad for you, there is also called the good cholesterol and they are the ones that our body needs to be healthy.

Causes Of High Blood Cholesterol

1. Unhealthy lifestyle habits: This includes unhealthy eating patterns, lack of or the absence of physical activity as well as smoking will increase the risk of having high blood cholesterol.

2. Genes: Our genes also play a big role, some of us develop high blood cholesterol because of mutations. These make it harder for us to clear LDL from our blood and break it down.

3. Other medical conditions:

  1. Chronic kidney disease
  2. Diabetes
  3. HIV
  4. Hypothyroidism
  5. Overweight and obesity
  6. Polycystic ovary syndrome

Inflammatory diseases such as:

  1. Psoriasis
  2. Lichen planus
  3. Pemphigus
  4. Histiocytosis
  5. Lupus Erythematosus
  6. Rheumatoid Arthritis

These are some of the conditions that can cause high cholesterol level in the blood.

4. Medicines: 

  1. Diuretics like thiazide used for high blood pressure
  2. Immunosuppressive drugs like cyclosporine for the treatment of inflammatory diseases like psoriasis
  3. Steroids like prednisone used to treat inflammatory diseases like lupus and psoriasis
  4. Retinoids like retinol used to treat acne
  5. Antiretroviral medicines for HIV
  6. Antiarrhythmic medicines like amiodarone used for the treatment of irregular heartbeat

Apps To Lower Blood Cholesterol

1. Cholesterol Food Reference: This app will help the user in knowing the cholesterol value of every food including those that are found in groceries and fast foods. 

2. MyFitnessPal: This app tracks all the nutrient content of the food that you eat like cholesterol, fats, fiber, calories, protein, carbohydrates and vitamins and more.

3. MyNetDiary: This app keeps a track of everything related to the user's health like meal plans, nutrient content of the foods you eat, log exercise routines as well as medications.

4. Foodvisor: This app acts as a nutritional coach and helps you in eating smart and healthfully. It also allows the user to chat with a nutritionist and receive health tips and recommendations.

5. Fooducate: This app analyzes the nutrient content and the ingredient found in the food that you are about to consume and help you discover those hidden ingredients that may be harmful to your health like trans fat, added sugars, artificial sweeteners, additives, and preservatives.

6. Smart Blood Pressure: This app will help you track your blood pressure, patterns in blood pressure level and help you get full control of your condition.

7. Vida Health: This app will assist you in eating healthy, increase physical activity, and help you reach your goal like lowering high blood cholesterol.

8. HowUdish: This app will assist you in looking for those restaurants that are suitable for your diet needs and goals.

9. Nutrients: This app will help you lower the level of cholesterol in your blood by letting you know how much-saturated fat and cholesterol present in a certain food.

10. ShopWell: This is the app that you should take with you when you go to a grocery store, this app will give you enough information about the food that you want to buy and suggest you food that is better to fit for your lifestyle.