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CHD and cholesterol

The risk of cardiovascular disease is influenced by a number of factorsMany factors influence the risk of cardiovascular disease, coronary heart disease (CHD) and stroke. These include non-modifiable factors such as inherited risks (reflected in family history), increasing age and male gender, and the well-established modifiable risks such as smoking, raised blood pressure, elevated cholesterol levels, lack of physical activity, obesity and Type 2 diabetes. It is also recognised that many other factors, including the distribution of body fat, insulin sensitivity, antioxidant status, abnormalities in blood clotting factors, elevated homocysteine levels, vitamin D status and many more, may also contribute to CHD.

Coronary heart disease causes death when the blood supply to the cardiac muscle is severely impaired by an occlusion of the coronary arteries. There are two main aspects to this process: atherosclerosis and thrombosis.

The complex sequence of cellular events that causes the development of atheroma, essentially a chronic inflammatory condition, has been extensively investigated over recent decades.

A high level of cholesterol-rich LDL is believed to be one of several factors that contribute to the initiation and maintenance of the process of coronary atherosclerosis. The antioxidant status of the arterial wall is thought to be another key factor in this whole process.

Find out more about LDL and HDL cholesterol and cholesterol in eggs 

All information checked by an independent Registered Nutritionist/Dietitian