The combo of high blood pressure and cholesterol is a common pairing I see in my practice as a GP.
Out of the two – cholesterol is not the villain, but high blood pressure most definitely is.
The Theory That Cholesterol Is Bad
Years ago a theory was put forward that cholesterol caused heart disease because it was found in the arteries of people who had died of heart attacks.
Research has moved on a lot since then though.
It’s now known that when cholesterol accumulates on the inside of arterial walls it’s in response to damage to those walls. Normally the lining of a blood vessels is very smooth, like Teflon. This is so blood can run smoothly through.
But when these cells become damaged the blood becomes turbulent. This turbulence causes more damage, and this needs repairing before the blood vessel starts leaking. In steps cholesterol in an attempt to repair things.
However, if this damage keeps happening cholesterol keeps building up. And this causes problems of its own.
High Blood Pressure And Cholesterol
The most common cause of damage to the lining of blood vessels is high blood pressure. This is why high blood pressure and cholesterol so often come together.
This is also why cholesterol deposits aren’t found in the venous part of the cardiovascular system. By the time the blood gets there the pressure in the vessels is a lot lower. Which begs the question – what’s the big problem here? Is it cholesterol, or is it the damage to the blood vessels??
Is high blood pressure turning your cholesterol rouge? Without high blood pressure would your cholesterol cause you any problems?
Why All The Fuss About Cholesterol?
If damage to the lining of arterial walls is the cause of cholesterol building up why is there an obsession about lowering cholesterol instead of the factors causing the damage?
Doctors certainly take high blood pressure seriously and treat it with a multitude of drugs to try and bring it down.
However, doctors don’t often have the time and aren’t always great at explaining why you have high blood pressure and what you can do to get yourself healthy again without tablets. You can read The Truth About High Blood Pressure here.
Most people treated for high blood pressure will be taking statins too (cholesterol lowering drugs).
It’s interesting that eating in a way that encourages high blood pressure to noramalise also brings cholesterol levels down too.
People who decide to change and get their body back to health can avoid all of these pills and feel so much better. You can do this too! If you don’t know how I’ve put all the information together in one easy place and you can watch the first session for free.
Have a great week