We were told by the media that cholesterol is evil, and every food that contains it shouldn't be consumed. So what did the food industry do? They started advertising food that was cholesterol free or even better, started advertising foods that can lower your cholesterol. Does the picture below look familiar?
What is cholesterol?
When we simplify cholesterol, it is a type of fat found in your blood, made by your liver. You can also get cholesterol from the foods that we eat like, meat, eggs, butter, cheese, etc.
"Fat in your blood? Obviously, that is bad for us!"
Wrong! Let's have a look.
Why is cholesterol essential?
1.Formation and maintenance of cell membranes
- Cholesterol is found in EVERY cell of our body, especially in the membranes of these cells, where it helps maintain the integrity of the membrane.
2.Production of critical hormones
- Glucocorticoids- Important for the metabolism of carbohydrates.
- Aldosterone- Conservation of sodium, secretion of potassium, water retention, and helps stabilize blood pressure.
- Testosterone- SEX HORMONE (now that you're awake keep reading). Testosterone is also responsible for bone mass, fat distribution, muscle size and strength, and red blood cell production.
- Progesterone- Regulates women's menstrual cycles.
- Estradiol- Sexual development and bone and brain health.
3.Production of bile
- Bile is a greenish fluid that is produced by the liver and stored in the gallbladder, and in order for the body to produce bile, cholesterol must be there. Bile must be present in order for the digestion system to break down fat.
4.Production of Vitamin D
- Without cholesterol, vitamin D cannot be synthesized.
3 cholesterol related myths debunked
1.High cholesterol causes coronary heart disease
- Numerous of studies tried to prove this but none of been proven.
2. Eggs will kill you
- Egg yolk is rich in fat yes, but fat is essential to your diet. I wouldn't recommend eating a dozen eggs a day, but having eggs with your breakfast is beneficial to your diet.
3. Low-fat diets are best
- This has been proven wrong, fat is ESSENTIAL to the human body, we need it to live.
Eating foods with high cholesterol is not bad for you unless it is OVER consumed, we need cholesterol to survive so avoiding cholesterol in food is not beneficial.