Cholesterol is an Anti-Inflammatory by Dr. Lynn August
Enough cholesterol is essential in your tissues because all hormones – including your sex hormones – are made from cholesterol. Enough cholesterol is also essential in your tissues because cholesterol is a very necessary anti-inflammatory agent.
Inflammation occurs in your tissues daily. Ordinary daily activity causes minor injuries in tissues. Your bodies’ inflammatory response ‘mops up’ this worn-out tissue, just as it does when you have an actual injury. Cholesterol’s job in your tissues is to stop the inflammatory response once its job is done.
The inflammatory response is also responsible for destroying organisms, such as viruses and bacteria, that can make you ill. In fact it is your inflammatory response to a virus, not the virus itself, that causes all the symptoms of a flu – from aches and chills to a runny nose and nausea.
It has been known for a long time that auto-immune diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis, multiple sclerosis and Crohn’s disease are the result of inflammation run amok. Evidence is mounting that will likely add heart disease, stroke and diabetes to this list. Further, anti-inflammatory medications are now being tried in the prevention and treatment of polyps, many cancers and Alzheimer’s.
It has also been known for a long time that the lower your cholesterol the more likely you are to die sooner of any disease. Now we know why. Cholesterol stops the necessary inflammatory response from running amok. Remember, it is the inflammatory response that causes the symptoms…and the disease.
A healthy total cholesterol is not lower than 170 and a healthy LDL/HDL cholesterol ratio is not lower than 1.8. These levels ensure enough cholesterol to prevent your inflammatory response once its job is done.
The Health Equations Blood Test Evaluation measures your Tissue Cholesterol. The Evaluation also tells you how to get and keep your Tissue Cholesterol in a healthy range.
Tissue Cholesterol Explained
Cholesterol is a very effective anti-inflammatory agent. Cholesterol in the tissues binds C-20 pro-inflammatory fatty acids, including the leukotrienes and the prostaglandin E2′s. When cholesterol binds the inflammatory fatty acids it neutralizes them. Once neutralized the fatty acids no longer generate free radicals.
The amount of cholesterol in the tissues “controls” the amount of free radicals. You want enough free radicals to destroy damaged tissues or pathogens when needed. Too many free radicals, however, lead to chronic inflammation and eventually to destruction of tissues (e.g., tendons), glands (e.g., thyroid) and organs (e.g., intestines)…a.k.a. auto-immune disease. Therefore you want the right amount of cholesterol in the tissues to ensure the right amount of free radical activity.
LDL cholesterol is the package that delivers cholesterol to the tissues. HDL is the package that removes cholesterol from the tissues. If the total cholesterol is between 170 and 210, an LDL/HDL ratio between 1.8 and 2.7 assures the right amount of cholesterol, and hence the right amount of free radical activity, in the tissues.
Dr. Lynne August, of Greenfield NH, is the founder and director of Health Equations. She received her Medical Degree from Washington University School of Medicine in 1973. She combined conventional and holistic medicines in private practice for ten years and soon after, founded Health Equations. For almost thirty years, Dr. August has been researching significant influences on health… diet, soil, water, agriculture, food processing and environmental exposures. The inspiration in Lynne’s clinical practice and research comes largely from her experience as a Clinical Researcher at the Institute of Applied Biology in New York. There, Dr. August assisted Scientific Director Emanuel Revici M.D. in research on non-toxic therapeutic lipids. She also draws upon her training and practice in Ayurveda. Prior to her work at the Institute of Applied Biology, Lynne served on the board of the American Holistic Medical Association, researched hyperinsulinism and diabetes and served as the staff physician at a multi-disciplinary research center for children with developmental needs. Dr. August has been widely published. She lectures at physician seminars throughout North America and Europe and hosts seminars for clinical health professionals.