Stroke is one of the deadliest and devastating conditions and is scarily common. A number of studies have been carried out to determine what one can do to reduce the risk of stroke. Now a new research reveals that reducing high levels of remnant cholesterol or ‘ugly cholesterol’ can significantly cut the risk of stroke and myocardial infarction. The study, published in Atherosclerosis journal, says that the levels of remnant cholesterol in the blood of adults are just as high as the amount of the “bad” LDL cholesterol.

The researchers from the University of Copenhagen elaborated that there are three types of cholesterol found in the blood — remnant cholesterol or ‘ugly cholesterol’, LDL cholesterol or ‘bad cholesterol’ and HDL cholesterol or ‘good cholesterol’. According to a professor associated with the research, previous studies have shown that remnant cholesterol is at least as critical as LDL cholesterol in relation to an increased risk of myocardial infarction and stroke. This study shows that remnant cholesterol may be more responsible than LDL cholesterol, the so-called ‘bad’ cholesterol, for cardiovascular diseases. The researchers discovered that from the age of 20 until the age of 60, the amount of remnant cholesterol in the blood constantly increases, and for many people it remains at a high level for the rest of their lives.

Overweight and obesity are the main causes of the very high amount of remnant cholesterol in the blood, in addition to diabetes, hereditary genes and lack of exercise. This means that prevention of myocardial infarction and stroke should not just focus on reducing the bad LDL cholesterol, but also on reducing remnant cholesterol and triglycerides, a type of fat.

Apart from exercise, there are many changes in your diet that you need to make to ensure that you cut down on cholesterol. You must make sure to eat a lot of whole fruits, vegetables, oily fish, nuts to cut down cholesterol. Also, reduce your intake of saturated fat.