Difference Between HDL and LDL
Many people believe that cholesterol is not good for the health and causes many serious illnesses. Health conscious individuals tend to refrain from consuming cholesterol in order to avoid grave medical problems. Very few people actually know that there is not just one, but two kinds of cholesterol. Knowing and understanding the nature and differences between these two can prove very useful in the fight to maintain a healthy body.
Low Density Lipoprotein or LDL is among the five lipoprotein groups of the body. They mainly function by allowing lipids like triglycerides and cholesterol to be transported through our bloodstream. The LDL particles transport cholesterol to the different arteries where they are retained. These, in turn, attract macrophages that can cause the formation of plaque. Vulnerable ones are eventually ruptured as blot clots start to form. This process can, in the end, cause a heart attack or stroke.
LDL is mainly considered bad or harmful cholesterol. In situations where LDL is too abundant in the bloodstream, the body is vulnerable to certain harms and medical conditions. However, there are methods to lower LDL levels in the body. Certain medications that use HM-CoA reductase can prove very helpful in inhibiting the rise of LDL levels. Lifestyle and especially diet changes also helps tremendously in achieving the same goal. Constant exercise and dieting to burn stored fats in the body has proven to be most effective.
High Density Lipoprotein or HDL, like LDL, is among the five lipoprotein groups that allow lipid transport throughout the bloodstream. Approximately 30% of the cholesterol in the blood of healthy people is composed of HDL. Of all the groups of lipoproteins, HDL is the smallest and, at the same time, the densest since it has the largest protein content.
Unlike LDL, HDL is considered the good cholesterol. Higher HDL levels is claimed to significantly lower the risks of coronary artery disease or heart attack. Consequently, insufficient HDL increases the body’s susceptibility to atherosclerosis and coronary heart disease. Even though there is still no clear proof to support these claims, numerous experts concur that HDL does carry harmful cholesterol into the liver; away from your arteries.
Differentiating Between the Two
High Density Protein or HDL is mostly composed of protein and only a small quantity of cholesterol. LDL, on the contrary, is composed of only a moderate quantity of protein and very high amounts of cholesterol. Hence, HDL has come to be known as the good cholesterol whereas LDL, in large amounts, is definitely bad for the body and can significantly increase the risks of heart disease and stroke.
Knowing the true nature of cholesterol and the differences between its two types can be very useful in maintaining their ideal levels and keeping the body as healthy as possible. As the saying goes; knowing the enemy is important in winning the battle. This remains true in the battle against bad cholesterol and heart disease.