Cholesterol is found in all cells of our body. It is waxy fat like substance used by body to build cell membranes, to synthesize hormones and vitamin D. Our body uses cholesterol to produce sex hormones and corticosteroid hormones. Cholesterol is used in production of male hormone testosterone.( But having high cholesterol doesn't mean your testosterone will be high) .Cholesterol needed by our body is produced in Liver. Some amount of cholesterol is added to our body through the food we eat (dietary cholesterol). The cholesterol so produced is carried to blood stream with the help of proteins.
The important types of Cholesterol are LDL (Low Density Lipoproteins) cholesterol and HDL (High Density Lipoproteins) Cholesterol. LDL cholesterol is also referred to as bad cholesterol as this builds up in arteries causing damage to heart. HDL cholesterol is referred to as good cholesterol as it carries cholesterol from other parts of body to liver.
The liver produces around 1000 mg of cholesterol everyday. Out of this 80% of cholesterol is used in bile salts’ production and remaining part is utilized for body function. Excess amount of cholesterol is deposited in arteries.
Health risks due to increased cholesterol level:
Increased cholesterol leads to hardening and narrowing of arteries. This condition is known as atherosclerosis. Atherosclerosis can lead to high blood pressure, coronary heart disease, heart attack and stroke. In men high cholesterol in blood may cause erectile dysfunction.