We’ve all heard about cholesterol—the good, the bad, and the ugly. But what is it really, and what levels are acceptable? Good questions.
Let’s start with what it is. Cholesterol, a waxy substance found in the fats in your blood, isn’t necessarily bad. In fact, your body manufactures it to continue to build healthy cells. It’s also found in some foods.
For the sake of the blog, let’s just look at two of the multiple components in gauging your cholesterol.
· Low-density lipoprotein (a.k.a. LDL), dubbed bad cholesterol, sends small chunks of cholesterol through the blood, depositing them on arterial walls until they can block blood flow.
· High-density lipoprotein (a.k.a. HDL), dubbed good cholesterol, sloughs extra cholesterol out of the blood, sending it to the liver to repurpose it.
Cholesterol higher than a certain level is deemed harmful and said to be a precursor of heart disease. Although an article in the Huffington Post makes a good argument against this idea. But, what your total cholesterol level doesn’t take into consideration is the ratio of HDL to cholesterol. What’s that? Glad you asked. You calculate your cholesterol ratio by dividing divide your HDL number into your total cholesterol number. An optimal ratio is less than 3.5-to-1. Recent findings indicate that inflammation, not high cholesterol is the culprit behind heart disease.
So, you ask, where does CBD enter the picture? Well, I’ll tell you. In a 2013 study of 4,652 participants who used CBD for health reasons, results showed higher levels of HDL, improving the ratio we just discussed. Because of the anti-inflammatory nature of CBD, it can engage with the CB1 and CB2 receptors already in our bodies to reduce inflammation systemically. As a result, cholesterol can be managed without harmful side effects that other cholesterol medications have.
Clearly, there is a lot more information you can glean about CBD and cholesterol. This blog is to get you thinking; the links can help you learn more and make informed choices about your health.