In recent years, the consumption of coconut oil and certain other kind of oils has come into the spotlight. These oils are supposed to increase the level of High Density Lipoprotein (HDL) and decrease the level of Low Density Lipoprotein (LDL) in your body.
This suggests that you will be healthier with a lower the risk of suffering from severe disease, especially heart disease. But is it really that good for your body to increase the level of HDL? HDL-C (a.k.a. good cholesterol) is cholesterol with high density, synthesized by the liver. It prevents triglyceride and Low-Density Lipoprotein Cholesterol (LDL-C) from accumulating in your arteries, which are the main causes for Peripheral Arterial Disease and heart diseases. Instead they are passed on to your liver and excreted through bile.
There are various ways to increase the level of HDL; such as frequent exercise or consuming food that helps increase the level of HDL. However, we cannot forget that HDL will first pass on those LDL to the liver before getting rid of it. This means that having high HDL may lead to steatosis (fatty liver) or the over function of your liver, which affect your liver enzymes. In addition to that, for some people having high HDL may cause more heart problems than others; because it is hereditary that it does not allow HDL to function normally. The question is whether HDL good or bad. There is a formula to calculate the risk of getting a heart disease from the cholesterol level in your body for you. The formula is to divide your total cholesterol level with your HDL level. The result should be lower than 5, which means that you have low risk of having a heart disease.
The name of ‘good cholesterol’ given to HDL does not mean that it has no bad effect to your body. Anything that is excessive cannot be good to your body. It is preferable to keep your HDL level in balance, not too much and not too little. (Contributed by Healthlab Medical Laboratory)