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Cholesterol is a soft, waxy substance found in the bloodstream. Everyone has cholesterol, which is used by the body to help produce certain hormones, create cell membranes and produce bile acids and Vitamin D; cholesterol is a vital part of a healthy body.

Cholesterol travels through the bloodstream attached to a protein and is mainly produced by the liver. It is also found in animal foods such as meat, eggs and dairy.

There are several types of cholesterol (or lipoproteins), such as low density, high density and very low density. This is determined by how much fat there is in relation to protein. Some cholesterol is thought to be good for the body, while other cholesterol, such as that found in trans fat, are unhealthy for the body.

Diet, exercise, weight, age and gender all affect cholesterol levels. When too much cholesterol is present, health problems such as coronary heart disease may develop.

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