Cholesterol is one of the fats, the compound is produced by the liver and is very important for the proper functioning of all organs and the body as a whole.
Every cell in our body contains part of cholesterol in the outer membrane.
In animals, this compound is represented as a waxy steroid that is transported by blood. Cholesterol refers to alcohols. According to the chemical nomenclature is called cholesterol. You can use both of these names.
This substance has a number of functions:
- covers nerve fibers;
- participates in the metabolism of fat-soluble vitamins;
- takes part in the production of vitamin D in the skin under the influence of sunlight;
- active ingredient in the process of synthesis of sex hormones;
- involved in the production of cortisol, aldosterone.
For the human body, the normal level of cholesterol production is from 3.5 mmol per liter to 7.7 mmol per liter. Although, if you listen to the recommendations of experts from the UK, the figure above 6 mol per liter is considered to be overstated. With this indicator increases the risk of atherosclerotic disease. Practically all doctors classify indicators as milligram / deciliter or millimole / liter, so the generally accepted values may differ:
- normally less than 200 mg / dL;
- above normal - up to 239 mg / dl;
- a high rate of 240 mg / dL;
- suitable level - from 5 to 6.3 mmol / l;
- slightly overstated - from 6.4 mmol / l;
- permissible, but high - from 6.5 to 7.7 mmol / l;
- overestimated level - above 7.9 mmol / l.
The recommended level of cholesterol in human serum should be 5 mmol per liter.
Methods for the determination of cholesterol
Modern medicine today has developed many methods for determining cholesterol in the blood.
For one of the diagnostic tests, you just need to contact the nearest hospital.
If there is a high level in the body, it can lead to bad consequences.
In this case, self-medication is strictly prohibited.
Methods and principle of determination:
- The fluorimetric method is capable of measuring cholesterol at the smallest volume of blood serum;
- Gas chromatography and chromatography;
- Colorimetric method;
- Thin layer chromatography;
- Gas-liquid chromatography;
- The polarographic method is able to accurately determine total serum cholesterol as well as free;
- Enzymatic method. It proceeds according to a specific algorithm.
- Spectrophotometric - depends on the content of cholesterol.
There is also a polarimetric method. This method is based on several color reactions.
The first reaction is Biol-Croft. Acetic acid and sulfuric acid are used for it; in the presence of cholesterol, the solution becomes red.
The second reaction is Wrigley. The reaction consists in the interaction of cholesterol with a solution containing methanol and sulfuric acid.
The third reaction, Chugayev, is based on the interaction of cholesterol with acetyl chloride and zinc chloride.
In the presence of cholesterol, the solution becomes red. The next reaction is Lieberman-Burchard. During the reaction, cholesterol is oxidized in an acidic medium that does not contain water.
As a result, conjugated double bonds are formed. The result is a complex compound of emerald green color. This reaction differs from the others in that it does not have a permanent stain. In meditourization there is a different ratio of reaction components.
The last Method is the Kaliani-Zlatkms-Zak reaction.
The result of the reaction should appear as a red-violet color solution. The whole process occurs as a result of the oxidation of cholesterol under the influence of sulfuric and acetic acids.
Diseases with high blood cholesterol
High cholesterol can lead to various diseases.
Doctors recommend taking a total blood test for cholesterol concentration each year.
This approach allows you to identify a large number of pathologies in the early stages of development.
If there are deviations from the norm in the content of HDL and LDL in the body, a number of diseases can occur, such as:
- angina pectoris;
- myocardial infarction;
- disorders of the vascular system;
- atherosclerosis and other pathologies.
Angina pectoris is a disease characterized by acute pain and discomfort in the chest. These symptoms are provoked by the fact that the heart muscle does not receive the necessary amount of oxygen and nutrients for normal work.
Microstroke, stroke. Occurs due to the formation in the blood of a clot capable of blocking a blood vessel located in the brain.
As a result, there is a violation of blood circulation, leading to the gradual death of cells in a certain area of the brain.
Myocardial infarction is a pathology that forms when blocking access of blood to the cells of the heart muscle, resulting in oxygen starvation. Most often this is caused by the formation of a blood clot located in the lumen of the coronary arteries. This can lead to partial death of the heart muscle.
Atherosclerosis. This pathology is of several types.
Atherosclerosis of the lower extremities, heart vessels, liver, kidneys, stomach and other organs is distinguished. Occurs as a result of the formation of atherosclerotic plaques that are located in the vessels of the circulatory system. They impede or completely block the blood flow, which leads to impaired blood circulation. The progression of the disease can trigger the onset of death.
Therefore, when violations are detected in the early stages, you need to contact the specialists to prevent the formation of plaques.
Causes and Symptoms of High Cholesterol
There are many different symptoms by which you can independently detect the presence of high cholesterol in the blood.
An experienced specialist determines this without research. It is easiest to determine the presence of an elevated level by the presence in the body of characteristic disturbances in the work.
For high cholesterol, the patient has the following symptoms:
- The appearance of yellow spots on the skin, especially around the eyes. This symptom has a medical name - xanthoma. Most often this can be transmitted by inheritance.
- The appearance of pain arising in the limbs when exerting an organism on the body. The symptom develops as a result of the narrowing of the arterial vessels supplying the blood to the limbs.
- The presence of angina resulting from a narrowing of the coronary artery of the heart.
- The formation of a mini-stroke, as a result of the formation of blood clots and rupture of the vessel.
- The development of heart failure, resulting in a lack of oxygen and nutrients.
All the reasons for which blood cholesterol can be elevated are divided into two types, which are changeable and unchangeable.
The main factor affecting the increase in cholesterol in the blood is unhealthy diet and lifestyle choices. In addition, this indicator can be influenced by the state of the environment.
Unchanged factors include age and genetic predisposition in the occurrence of elevated cholesterol concentrations.
The main reasons for increasing cholesterol are:
- Bad habits. Smoking is one of the main causes of pathology. Consumption of alcoholic beverages can lead to alcohol dependence, as a rule, all alcoholics have a high level of LDL, and the level of HDL - lowered.
- Excess weight. A group of people who suffer from overweight or obesity have a high level of LDL. This is observed more often than people with normal weight.
- Fixed lifestyle. To maintain normal cholesterol levels, you need to do morning exercises every day for 20 minutes. If possible, it is recommended to go to the gym for classes with a trainer, do water aerobics, ride a bike at least once a week. Who does not have such an opportunity, can go in for a quick walk daily for 1 hour. It is not recommended to lead a sedentary lifestyle.
In addition, malnutrition is a major cause. Some foods contain high amounts of cholesterol. For example, eggs, kidneys. To avoid an elevated rate, you should adhere to proper nutrition. It is recommended to count the number of calories for each day, taking into account the energy and nutritional value of products.
Facts about cholesterol are discussed in the video in this article.