Humans often learn about cholesterol at a much later age in relation to avoiding heart disease.
What is cholesterol?
LDL, the so-called "bad cholesterol," can raise your risk of blocked arteries, heart attacks, and stroke if you have too much of it.
Additionally, HDL (high-density lipoproteins), known as "good cholesterol," defends you by transporting cholesterol to your liver for elimination.
However, some scientists believe HDL may also be crucial for maintaining brain function by reducing the chance of Alzheimer's disease.
Cholesterol and Alzheimer’s
This waxy substance called cholesterol can accumulate on the walls of arteries, potentially leading to health issues.
In the United States, 71 million people have high levels of LDL. Cholesterol is one of the fundamental components of the cell wall, albeit it is more frequently linked to heart disorders including stroke as a contributing factor.
According to a recent study, this cholesterol may potentially serve as a promoter for the formation of protein (amyloid-beta) clusters in the brain.
These protein clumps create toxic plaques that destroy brain tissue and cause amyloid-beta to aggregate.
But researchers have had trouble figuring out how amyloid-beta clusters start to develop in the first place.
In the brain, cholesterol has a neuro-protective role; HDL is a component of the myelin sheath, which insulates and shields the brain and nerve cells.
Cholesterol is one of the components that contribute to the ability of neurons to exchange electrical impulses and interact with one another, and myelin also improves the transmission of electrical signals across the nervous system's circuitry.
Inflammation of the brain-blood barrier, which can lead to cognitive deterioration, also seems to be prevented by HDL.
It has been hypothesized that HDL may aid in the removal of clumps of improperly folded peptides and proteins before they cause neurodegenerative damage, much as it aids in the removal of excess cholesterol and lipids from the body that cause CVD.
Protein carriers are less efficient as people age, preventing the circulation of cholesterol throughout the body. Therefore, it may be feasible to create medications in the future that focus on this mechanism, aiding in the regulation of the brain's cholesterol and amyloid-beta levels.