High cholesterol is not a disease in itself, but it is linked to serious conditions, such as cardiovascular conditions (disease of the heart and blood vessels), angina, stroke, and mini stroke, known as transient ischaemic attack (TIA). Together with a high level of triglycerides, it can increase your risk of developing coronary heart disease.
Western Medical View
If you have been diagnosed with high cholesterol, the first method of treatment will usually involve making some changes to your diet (adopting a low fat diet), and ensuring that you take plenty of regular exercise.
After a few months, if there there is no decrease, you will usually be advised to take cholesterol lowering medication. Commonly prescribed medication includes: Statins, Aspirin and Niacin. Sometimes other medications, such as cholesterol absorption inhibitors (ezetimibe), and bile-acid sequestrants are used.
Chinese Medical View
In Chinese Medicine theory over-consumption of fatty foods, sweet foods, dairy products and alcohol generates Damp-Heat inside the body which leads to the failure of the spleen and stomach to digest food and transport its nutrients to the rest of the body.
High cholesterol is often marked by a deficiency of the Yin energy in the Liver and Kidney, as well as lassitude in the loins and knees, dizziness and tinnitus, insomnia, amnesia, diabetes, hypertension and heart attack.
If the level is high during mental depression, Fire will be generated in the Liver and the pathogenic Fire-Heat will attack the Liver channel in the body.
According to Chinese Medicine theory acupuncture and certain Chinese herbs can be prescribed to lower cholesterol by achieving natural, healthy weight-loss, treating indigestion, relieving stress and treating the deficiency of vital energy in the Kidney and Liver.
- Drink 2 litres of water every day.
- Use less salt and sugar.
- Eat less of the cholesterol-rich foods.
- Eat more fruit and vegetables.
- Do not exceed alcohol limits.
- Exercise regularly.
- Learn to relax and control your stress levels.
- Take enough time to eat more slowly.
- Do not smoke.
- Get your cholesterol levels checked regularly by your GP.
For personalised advice on diet and lifestyle, please ask the doctor during your consultation.
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