The good, the bad and the ugly

Did you know that there are actually three types of cholesterol? There is good cholesterol and bad cholesterol, and there is also ugly cholesterol. No, that isn’t a joke (although it might have started out that way).

Most people are aware of good and bad cholesterol (and if you aren’t you might like to take a look at Rachel’s guide Cholesterol for dummies), but there is also a lesser-known type of cholesterol known as ugly cholesterol.

Ugly cholesterol, also called remnant cholesterol, is the worst kind of cholesterol. It is the direct cause of atherosclerosis, or the process in which the arteries become clogged, resulting in heart disease and early death. The risk of ischemic heart disease, which is the leading cause of death worldwide, is three times higher in someone with high levels of ugly cholesterol.

The new information about ugly cholesterol comes from a study of 73,000 Danes, which was published in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology. You can read a summary of the study in the article Overlooked ugly cholesterol causes heart disease, study suggests at the ScienceDaily website. 

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