High cholesterol or hypercholesterolaemia is a serious health condition that can block or damage your arteries and result in heart attack and stroke. While excess cholesterol is harmful, cholesterol that is naturally produced in the body is not. Cholesterol is also present in foods rich in sugar and saturated fats. There are two types of cholesterol namely, high-density lipoprotein(HDL) and low-density lipoprotein(LDL). HDL is required for overall cardiovascular health, whereas LDL forms as a plaque in the arteries and raises blood pressure.
High cholesterol levels can cause heart disease and also affects your eyes. You can witness some changes around your eyes that indicate high cholesterol levels. There can be changes in the eye colour, vision, and appearance of eyelids. Read this article to learn what signs you should look out for to avoid serious ailments.
How High Cholesterol Affects Your Eyes
Early Signs In Your Eyes That You Should Not Ignore
Xanthelasma is the most prevalent symptom of high cholesterol, which can cause raised and yellowish areas around the eyes or nose. It does not affect your vision and is common in people who smoke, have diabetes, high blood pressure, or are overweight.
Arcus Senilis or corneal arcus is a condition in which your eyes develop a coloured ring of blue or grey around the cornea's periphery. This is due to the deposition of cholesterol in the cornea and mainly occurs among people of middle age. It can be treated by removing the cholesterol deposited around the eyes surgically.
Retinal Vein Occlusion
Retinal vein occlusion is a health condition, which causes blockage of blood vessels that feed the retina. The retina is a light-sensitive tissue located at the back of your eye that receives blood through the retinal artery and retinal vein. It can lead to serious vision problems like partial or complete vision loss or blind spots. This condition is seen more in people aged 50 or above or among people with diabetes, high blood pressure, and glaucoma.
How To Lower High Cholesterol Level
- Maintain a healthy diet by reducing foods with saturated fats and including foods rich in omega-3 fatty acids and soluble fibre.
- Practice yoga or exercise daily to improve your cholesterol and raise HDL cholesterol.
- Try to reduce your weight if you are obese, as it can result in high cholesterol levels. Avoid sugary drinks and processed foods.
- Avoid smoking as it increases LDL cholesterol and decreases HDL cholesterol levels. It prevents the body's capacity to move cholesterol back to the liver from being put away or separated.
- Limit your alcohol intake to improve your good cholesterol levels. Alcohol can increase the risk of heart disease and cause other health conditions.
Although cholesterol plays an important role in the body, excessive levels can result in clogged arteries and heart disease. High cholesterol can be diagnosed with the help of blood tests. Consult with your doctor if you notice any of these symptoms, and seek the necessary treatment.