HDL cholesterol collects the excessive cholesterol from the plaque and returns the blood vessel to its normal state (Fig. 4).
Fig. 2 shows LDL cholesterol before adding HLD cholesterol and after adding HLD cholesterol. Red parts are LDL cholesterol. After adding HLD cholesterol, LDL cholesterol decreases.
So it seems better that HDL cholesterol is more.
But actually, whether the amount of HDL cholesterol is large or small doesn’t change the risk of developing stroke, meaning that there is not much point in increasing the amount of HDL cholesterol.
The absorbing power of HDL cholesterol is important.
When checking the absorbing power of HLD cholesterol of 50 people whose ages were from 20s to 60s, 19 people’s (about 40 %) HDL cholesterol didn’t have enough power to absorb LDL cholesterol.
What makes a difference in the absorbing power of HDL cholesterol?
There are 2 persons whose BMI, the amount of consumption and the habit of smoking are the same among the people who attended the above experiment.
Person A’s HDL cholesterol has enough absorbing power, but person B’s HLD cholesterol doesn’t have.
Person A eats a food 2 to 3 times a week and person B eats the same thing only once a month.
The substance contained in the food is EPA.
The food contained EPA is a blue-back fish (Fig. 5).
Does eating blue-back fishes really improve the absorbing power of HDL cholesterol?
5 people whose absorbing power of HDL cholesterol had been less than the reference value (0.3) tried to eat blue-back fishes at least once a day for 2 weeks.
The result of the experiment was that 4 out of 5 people’s absorbing power of HDL cholesterol increased and became more than 0.3, and 1 person’s absorbing power was the same as before the experiment.
Why does a blue-back fish contain EPA a lot?
Because blue back fishes migrate in the cold sea where are rich in phytoplankton which produces EPA to keep their body elastic in the cold water.
EPA keeps the blood vessels soft and elastic so that EPA prevents hardening of the artery. In addition to that, it has turned out that EPA strengthens the absorbing power of HDL cholesterol.
Lowering the LDL cholesterol by medication only prevented 20 to 30 % of the diseases caused by hardening of the artery so that the medication to increase HDL cholesterol was developed, but it didn’t have any effect. So the function of HDL cholesterol stated to be paid attention to.
It is easy to take blue-back fishes by getting canned ones.
EPA is easily oxidized by the heat, so carpaccio, which coat raw fishes with olive oil and prevents EPA from oxidization, is recommended.
- Too much LDL cholesterol in the blood vessel forms plaque that causes hardening of the artery, so if your LDL cholesterol is high, you have to be careful.
- It has been considered that the higher HDL cholesterol is, the better your health is, but it has recently turned out that the quality of HDL cholesterol, which is the power of absorbing LDL cholesterol, is important. If the absorbing power of HDL cholesterol is strong, there is a possibility that the blood vessel will be rejuvenated by absorbing LDL cholesterol from the plaque.
- What improves the quality of HDL cholesterol is EPA contained in blue-back fishes. In the experiment, eating blue-back fishes once a day for 2 weeks improved the absorbing power of HDL cholesterol. If you replace meats with fishes, you can expect that LDL cholesterol decreases as well.
Other things to lower LDL cholesterol
Nuts and green tea (Fig. 6): 25 grams of nuts and at least a cup of green tea a day
Walking: 30 minutes a day
5 people whose absorbing power of HLD cholesterol was lower than the reference value tried taking nuts for 2 weeks, and their absorbing power was improved.
4 people tried walking and the absorbing power of 3 out of 4 people was improved.
What lowers the absorbing power of HDL cholesterol is oxidization or inflammation of blood vessels due to smoking, alcohol, obesity or high blood pressure.
Nuts, green tea and walking are considered suppressing the oxidization and inflammation