Understanding your cholesterol & lipid profile


Our body transports fat in the form of lipids. There are two types of lipids – cholesterol & triglycerides

Firstly, cholesterol is not a bad thing! It is a waxy, substance that is present in every cell of the body and is important for producing hormones, generating vitamin D & many other functions. Our body (liver) can produce it by itself and it is also available in food. They are two types of cholesterol – low density & high-density lipoproteins. Let us now tell you what a lipoprotein is.

Since our body cannot transport fat through blood, it combines fat molecules with protein to form ‘lipoproteins’. These lipoproteins are then transported through blood across different tissues and organs for various vital functions of the body such as hormone creation (estrogen & testosterone), digestion, Vit D generation, creating cell membranes etc.

LDL (Low-Density Lipoprotein)

LCL carries cholesterol from the liver to other parts of body and organs for various functions mentioned above. However, they can also build up in the walls of the arteries, making them hard and narrow thus creating a block. They are hence known as BAD CHOLESTEROL.

HDL (High-Density Lipoprotein)

HDL carries cholesterol back from the organs and tissues back to the liver for excretion. Hence they are known as GOOD CHOLESTEROL

Quite logically a healthy ratio of LDL – HDL is important to make sure there isn’t any blockage in the arteries.


Triglycerides are yet another type of lipid (fat) which is formed mostly from excess calories (over and above your requirement) and they are stored in the fat cells. If you regularly eat more calories than the requirement, you may have high triglycerides (hypertriglyceridemia). High triglyceride levels also can cause the hardening of arteries thereby creating blocks and can also impact pancreas (pancreatitis). Transfat, highly processed carbs, excess calories etc all lead to high lipid profile. With proper calorie planning and physical activity, both cholesterol & triglycerides can be controlled.

Read more about HDL and LDL cholesterol differences, diseases caused and food to eat to increase good cholesterol.

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