The Cholesterol Cutoff

  • Robert M. Kaplan

Recently, while changing clothes after a workout in the gym, I could not resist listening in as two men exchanged numbers in what sounded like a boasting fest. Was it about their golf scores or some other index of athletic accomplishment? Were they comparing earnings on their stock portfolios or citing the IQ scores of their children? No. They were talking about their serum cholesterol readings. A low cholesterol value is not only a number people know, it is also a source of pride. One man had lowered his LDL cholesterol through vigorous exercise and the use of medication. He attributed his regular visits to the gym as part of this quest. This chapter explores the benefits and other consequences of our obsession with cholesterol.

Cholesterol is a waxy substance found in the cell walls of most animals. It is necessary for a variety of reasons, including the production of sexual and other hormones and building and maintaining cell membranes. It is not an exaggeration to say that...


Total Cholesterol Heart Attack High Cholesterol Blood Cholesterol National Cholesterol Education Program 
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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  • Robert M. Kaplan
    • 1
  1. 1.UCLA School of Public HealthLos AngelesUSA

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