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What is LDL?

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Some cholesterol comes from the food you eat, and your liver makes some. It can't dissolve in blood, so proteins carry it where it needs to go. These carriers are called "lipoproteins." LDL is a microscopic blob made up of an outer rim of lipoprotein and a cholesterol center. Its full name is "low-density lipoprotein." It's bad because it becomes part of plaque, the stuff that can clog arteries and make heart attacks and strokes more likely.

From: LDL: The 'Bad' Cholesterol WebMD Medical Reference

SOURCES:

American Heart Association: "LDL and HDL Cholesterol: What's Bad and What's Good?"

Tabas, I.   2002. Journal of Clinical Investigation,

The National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute: "High Blood Cholesterol: What You Need to Know."

Jenkins, D.K.   July 23, 2003. JAMA,

Stefanick, M.L.   1998. New England Journal of Medicine,

American Heart Association: "Good Cholesterol vs. Bad Cholesterol."

Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine: "Carbohydrates: Complex Carbs vs Simple Carbs."

Reviewed by James Beckerman on May 7, 2019

SOURCES:

American Heart Association: "LDL and HDL Cholesterol: What's Bad and What's Good?"

Tabas, I.   2002. Journal of Clinical Investigation,

The National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute: "High Blood Cholesterol: What You Need to Know."

Jenkins, D.K.   July 23, 2003. JAMA,

Stefanick, M.L.   1998. New England Journal of Medicine,

American Heart Association: "Good Cholesterol vs. Bad Cholesterol."

Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine: "Carbohydrates: Complex Carbs vs Simple Carbs."

Reviewed by James Beckerman on May 7, 2019

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What do LDL cholesterol test results mean?

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