Archive for December, 2013

Acupuncture and Traditional Chinese Medicine for Healthy Cholesterol

High cholesterol (hyperlipidemia) in Chinese Medicine perspective is considered a “phlegm” condition and is related to the malfunction of liver in regulating the transformation and transportation of cholesterol.

Cholesterol is an essential structural component of all cell membranes. In addition to providing proper membrane permeability and fluidity, cholesterol aids in intracellular transport, signaling and nerve conduction. Cholesterol is the precursor for the biosynthesis of steroid hormones, bile acids and vitamin D. These steroid hormones include cortisol, aldosterone, progesterone, estrogen and testosterone. The body makes about 75% of blood cholesterol, while the other 25% comes from food from animal sources. Cholesterol is converted in bile in the liver and stored in the gallbladder.


Up to about 1 gram of cholesterol enters the colon a day from food, bile and intestinal cells. It is then converted into a nonabsorbable sterol that is excreted in the feces. The liver functions in regulating cholesterol levels of by synthesizing cholesterol and also removing it from the body. An individual’s cholesterol level may differ for a number of reasons including heredity, level of physical activity, weight, diet, hormonal changes and age. Eating a diet rich in fruits and vegetables, lean protein and healthy fats while engaging in regular physical activity are the first steps one should take to reduce cholesterol levels.

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