High cholesterol: Nutritionist reveals top prevention tips
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Cholesterol is a waxy, fat-like substance that the liver produces. It’s vital for the formation of cell membranes, vitamin D, and certain hormones. Cholesterol, therefore, is essential for the body, however having too much of the substance puts a person at high risk of either a heart attack or stroke. Feeling pain in the feet, hands or jaw could indicate your risk.
The warning signs of high cholesterol symptoms include pain in hands and feet.
This occurs due to accumulation of cholesterol which can clog the blood vessels of legs and hands.
This build-up of cholesterol can occur continuously and make the hands and feet painful.
Pain in feet
Peripheral artery disease (PAD) is a build-up of cholesterol and plaque in the arteries that lead to your extremities, said Cleveland Clinic.
It continued: “PAD can cause discomfort in your legs and feet and limit your walking and activities.
“Severe PAD can progress to loss of limbs.
“Your doctor can check for signs of the disease with a simple test of pulses in your feet.”
Pain in hands
When there is an accumulation of plaque (fatty deposits) it clogs the arteries, which is called atherosclerosis.
These deposits are made up of cholesterol, fatty substances, cellular waste products, calcium and fibrin.
As the cholesterol in the body builds up, it can clog the blood vessels of the hands.
This build-up of cholesterol can occur continuously and make the hands painful.
Aches and pains in the jaw and neck are fairly common symptoms of angina discomfort arising from poor blood flow to part of the heart muscle, said Harvard Health.
The health site added: “Although angina is commonly felt as pain, pressure, or heaviness in the chest, it can appear in many guises.
“The main nerve that carries pain signals from the heart, the vagus nerve, also communicates with the neck, jaw, and head, as well as the left arm.
“That means alarm signals from the heart can be felt elsewhere.”
The American Heart Association recommends having your cholesterol levels checked every four to six years if you are a healthy adult over the age of 20.
If you have a family history of high cholesterol, it’s recommended to have it checked more often.
A person may also need more frequent cholesterol checks if they have a family history of heart attacks or strokes.
As high cholesterol does not cause any major symptoms in the early stages, it is integral for one to make good lifestyle choices by eating a healthy diet, maintaining an exercise routine and regularly monitoring cholesterol levels.
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