Author: Dr Rick
Most people know to watch their cholesterol levels. Of course, this is not usually a concern until you hit about 40-50, then everybody watches their cholesterol. Everybody knows that cholesterol causes cardiovascular disease, the number one cause of death, but there is another important piece to this puzzle that may be missing.
Cholesterol is needed by your body for repair, and health. Cholesterol is important to your good health. In fact, it was found that people with cholesterol levels that are too low, may suffer from depression and increased suicides. We are told that cholesterol levels above 200 means high risk, but did you know that as much as 40% of heart attack victims have cholesterol under 200?
So what are you missing?
Cholesterol alone does not cause atherosclerosis.
It is the oxidation of the LDL cholesterol that causes the problem. This may be one reason why lowering your cholesterol does lower your risk. There are literally hundreds of research articles written every year that identify oxidation as the key risk factor.
Oxidation does not stop there. It may be responsible for many other age related disorders as well. Disorders such as cataracts, macular degeneration, fibromyalgia, chronic fatigue, "age" or liver spots, aging, wrinkles and more, are all believed to be caused by free radical damage.
Free radicals cause damage by stealing electrons from other molecules, causing a cascading effect, damaging other molecules as it goes. This becomes a problem when it effects DNA, or cellular reproduction. Keep in mind that your body regenerates, and renews itself, so why is it that we seem to deteriorate? When a damaged cell reproduces, it creates a replica of itself. When you are young, and at 100%, it takes a while before you notice this damage. This is why, I believe, there is a misconception that disorders such as poor digestion, intestinal irregularities, arthritis, age spots, cataracts, high cholesterol, cardiovascular disease, and so on... are an inevitable part of aging.
So what can you do about it?
Well, for starters, reducing inflammation in your body will help. Try and eat more whole foods, and less processed foods. Avoid foods that you are allergic to. Most people have undiagnosed food sensitivities. I have not met anybody that does not have at least a couple. These undiagnosed food sensitivities can add stress to your body, as well as cause inflammation. It's best to have an ELISA blood test done to identify these foods so you can limit, or avoid them.
Avoid transfatty acids and foods that are high in sugars and fats. Avoid foods that have a high glycemic load. Eat plenty of fruits and vegetables. Many people do not even get their RDA of essential vitamins and minerals. The RDA was set as a median level for healthy people.
Stress, inflammation, chemicals, drugs, pollution, cigarette smoke, coffee, alcohol, sugar, disease, all increase your need for vitamins and minerals, so, like mom always said: Eat Your Veggies! Many people could benefit from supplements as well, since for some, its not possible to get enough from their food. Reduce stress levels. This is a big one. Implement some form of a stress relief program. Watching TV is not a stress relief program... sorry.
Have your oxidation levels tested. This is a simple test, no needles, no pain, and can even be done by a lab through the mail. It can tell you a lot more about your cardiovascular risk potential, than just your cholesterol numbers alone. When I do this test, I prefer to do a complete metabolic test, since it will yield a more complete picture.
After about age 30, your hydrochloric acid in your stomach decreases in strength which puts a strain on your body and causes various imbalances, not to mention most seniors have difficulty absorbing vitamin B12 due to decreased intrinsic factor.
oxidation is a simple thing to combat, but it can have far reaching effects. There is even strong research to indicate that oxidative damage may be at the root of disorders such as fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue syndrome. Fortunately, its easy to detect and adjust for. To find out more on metabolic testing, or oxidation testing, click here.
Maintaining your good health, or reaching a state of wellness does not have to be difficult. It also does not mean you need to spend $500/mo in supplements, and never enjoy a piece of chocolate cake again. If you make small changes, and use these simple, informative tests as a guide, your small changes can have a big impact on your health.
About the Author:
Rick Jahn is a doctor of Oriental medicine with a practice in Florida. Dr Jahn also operates www.my-health-and-wellness-coach.com in order to help people all over learn more about their health so they can reach a level of optimal wellness.