This October is National Cholesterol Month and Heart UK are asking you to walk, run, cycle, swim or row The 100 Mile Great Cholesterol Challenge to help raise money for the charity.
Heart UK is the only charity in the UK dedicated to saving lives by helping people avoid heart attacks or strokes caused by high cholesterol.
Set yourself a goal to walk, run, swim, row or cycle 100 miles (or a combination of these) and get sponsored for doing it, work as teams or individuals and each person in the team is challenged to complete the 100 miles.
What is cholesterol?
Cholesterol is a waxy substance which is made by the liver but is also found in some foods. It plays a vital role in how cells work and is also needed to make vitamin D, some hormones and bile for digestion. Too much cholesterol can increase your risk of getting heart and circulatory diseases.
HDL and LDL cholesterol?
Cholesterol is carried in the blood attached to proteins called lipoproteins. There are two main forms, LDL (low density lipoprotein) and HDL (high density lipoprotein). LDL is often referred to as ‘bad cholesterol’ because too much of it is unhealthy.
Causes of high cholesterol
· Eating a diet high in saturated fat
· Not being physically active
· Being overweight or obese
· Having a large waist circumference
· Type 2 diabetes
· Underactive thyroid gland
· Kidney problems
· Liver problems
· Alcohol intake
· Certain genetic conditions
Foods which increase cholesterol
· Hard fats such as butter, margarine, lard
· Fatty meat, burgers, sausages and kebabs
· Dairy fats such as cream, cheese, full fat milk or yogurt
· Pastries, pies, cakes, rich creamy desserts and biscuits
· Coconut oil and cream
Symptoms of high cholesterol
High cholesterol is often called the ‘silent killer’ as for most people there are no obvious symptoms. The first sign you could have could be:
· Heart attack
Other signs to look out for:
· A parent, sibling or child with high cholesterol
· A parent or sibling who have had a heart attack or angina before the age of 50 (men) or 60 (women)
· Being type 2 diabetic
· Having a diet high in animal/saturated fat
· Being physically inactive
· Fatty deposits on your eyelids or a white ring around the iris of the eye
To sign up go to: