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oxidation of LDL cholesterol

Updated on August 12, 2009
Cross section of Artery
Cross section of Artery

Oxidation of LDL cholesterol

People are very much worried about their elevated LDL cholesterol levels. They believe an elevated cholesterol level may lead to heart diseases. But the real fact is that cholesterol can not harm your body unless it got oxidised, and it is very importent to learn about the oxidation process of LDL cholesterol.

When you look at the cross section of a typical artery you can see that it is a three layer structure, the first layer of cells is called endothelium. The area just under the lining surface is called the sub endothelial space and the third layer is the muscular layer.

Stage-1: inflammation of Endothelium

The native LDL cholesterol becoms trapped in the subenothelial space where it can be easly oxidised if there is there are not adequate anti oxidents available. The endo thelium is an extremely sensitive lining that is vulnerable to even the slightest irritations. Oxidized LDL cholesterol and exessive free radicals cuase the oxidative stress that injure the endothelium.

Stage 2:Bodys Defense against inflammation

Our body has defense system to protect this endo thelium of artery. when injury occurs our body send certain white cells to eliminate the harmful oxidised LDL cholesterol. If this attept is successful the lining of artery will be reapaired. But this is not what uasually happens.when the monocyte white cells reacts with oxidized LDL , insted of eliminating the injury the LDL get gobbled with the white cells and finally a foam-cell is formed. This leads to a chronic inflammatory response in the area arouns the ining of our arteries.

Stage 3:Chronic inflammatorry response

the inflammations attracts more white white cells the monocytes then stuff them selfs with more oxidized LDL cholesterol this leads to a much thicker plaque..This chronic inflammation also cause the muscle layer of the artery to thicken by aprocess called proliferation, as a result the artery begins to narrow.

Stage 4:Rupture of these plaque

Most of the cases the final event is the rupture of one of these plaques and the clot that forms around a ruptured plaque.this cause the total closure of this artery which blocks the blood flow to that part of the heart, the result is an heart attack.

We can clearly say that heart disease is not a cholesterol disease, it is an inflammatory disease. The correct aproch to cure is eleminating or reducing these inflammations.


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