Keto Diet For Weight Loss: A Beginners Guide
What makes the keto diet so popular for weight loss?
- It has a lot of science behind it and;
- It just flat out works.
Keto has been adopted by people from all walks of life including athletes to improve performance, diabetics to reduce their blood sugars and even reverse their disease but mostly by normal people like you and me who just want to gain a more lean physique.
The goal of this guide is to give you a basic understanding of what keto is, why it works (in terms of fat loss) along with actionable tips to get you started!
What Is The Keto Diet?
It’s important that you do not think of keto as another “diet” because for you to successfully get and stay lean you have to treat it as your new way of eating.
Keto is one of the few diets that is not only sustainable but healthy and versatile giving you plenty of variation so you can more easily integrate it into your life.
How Does Keto Work?
Keto is essentially a low-carb high fat (LCHF) diet, once your body is absent of glucose (derived from carbohydrates) your body “switches gears” into a natural metabolic state called “ketosis” whereby your body now uses ketones (derived from fat) as its primary energy source.
This switch from burning sugars to burning fat results in a fast depletion of fat stores – leading to less fat around your body and vital organs.
Is Keto Just Another Atkins Or Low Carb Diet?
Unlike Atkins or other low carb eating plans which are based on low-carb, high-fat and high protein, keto requires that you reduce your protein - we’ll get into why this is important later in this guide.
Why Carbohydrates Are Restricted On Keto
The aim of the ketogenic diet is to get your body to break down fat (stored fat or consumed) to be used as the primary source of fuel, when you consume carbohydrates you’re no longer burning fat you are burning sugar while also storing fat.
How Glucose Blocks Fat Burning
When you eat most carbohydrates like starch, fruits and grains your pancreas secretes a hormone called insulin – a storage hormone.
Here’s what happens:
Every time you eat carbs you elevate insulin levels which means that carbs are being converted into glucose and stored inside your muscles as energy while also storing any excess carbs as fat stores – plus if you’ve eaten fat along with those carbs then that fat is instantly stored as fat.
In basic terms:
When insulin levels are high you are storing fat.
When insulin levels are low you are burning fat.
We’ve been told to eat multiple times per day (sometimes up to 6!) by eating small meals, chances are you’re eating multiple meals or snacks which have carbs which means…
…You spend more time storing fat than burning it!
How To Get Fatter (A Vicious Cycle)
As your weight increases (more cells are being created) your body then increases your appetite to help fuel that extra growth.
- Eat Carbs
- Insulin Triggered
- Store Fat
- Appetite Increases Slowly Over Time To Accommodate Growing Body Size
- Carb Portions Increase
- (Rinse & Repeat From Step 2)
Continue this cycle long enough and you can develop insulin resistance which means your body needs to create more insulin which in turn increases fat storage.
How The Keto Diet Counters This Cycle And Helps Burn Fat
At its core, keto is a low carb diet (20-50grams per day) which means your insulin levels are low all day long which keeps you in fat burning mode all day.
With insulin levels under control and your fat reserves being burned up your weighty will decrease and appetite will reduce as well.
If You’re Not Eating Carbs Where Does Your Energy Come From?
When you are in a low carb/sugar state your body begins to use fat as its main source of fuel by breaking down fatty acids into ketones once this happens your becomes “fat adapted”.
Fat adaption means that your body has now become efficient at breaking down fat for fuel.
Once you become fat-adapted the weight effortlessly falls off.
But we’re not just talking about the fat from “belly, hips, butt and thighs” we’re also talking about the dangerous fat wrapped around your organs this will dramatically reduce the chances of serious diseases.
At this point your body is now breaking down fat (in the form of consumed and stored fats) into ketones which is the key to all of this.
What are Ketones?
While in ketosis your body produces small fuel molecules called “ketones”.
Ketones are produced in the liver (from fat) which is then used as fuel throughout the body including muscles, organs and also the brain.
Ketosis Versus Ketoacidosis
Ketosis and ketoacidosis are often confused and they are two completely different things.
Ketosis is a natural fat burning process in the body, while ketoacidosis is a medical condition that occurs only in uncontrolled diabetes.
Ketoacidosis is dangerous, but ketosis on a ketogenic diet is perfectly normal, healthy, and necessary for weight loss.
Ketones and Survival
Ketones have been useful in our past during times of famine and infrequent times of eating. When food wasn’t readily available we could supply the body with a steady source of energy by breaking down fat (burning fat) and using the by-product (ketones) as fuel.
But, instead of using starvation as the trigger to get ourselves into ketosis, we’re simply going to restrict our carbohydrates which will help deliver us the same result!
The Three Types Of Ketone Bodies
Acetoacetate – when fatty-acids are broken down into energy acetoacetate is the first chemical produce which will then go on to create Beta-hydroxybutyrate which is the main energy shuttle in ketosis.
Acetone –acetone is the simplest ketone and is released when acetoacetate is broken down. Once broken down acetone is then released through your urine and breath which is one of the ways to check if you’re transitioning into ketosis with breath testing equipment.
Beta-hydroxybutyrate (BHB) – is one of the main molecules that helps your body produce energy when glucose is absent inside the body.
Does Eating Fat Make You Fat?
As you already know, eating carbs makes you fat because it triggers insulin, fat on the other hand has little to zero impact on insulin levels.
Because eating fat does not trigger insulin – you can eat it without disrupting the fat burning process.
Not only that but your triglycerides (fat in the blood) are low.
Keto Is 70-80% Fat…What About Cholesterol?
Cholesterol is actually incredibly important to your body and helps the body in many different ways, here are just a few:
- Cholesterol is used to make the sex hormones testosterone, progesterone, and estrogen.
- Repairs cells and maintains the integrity of that cell to extend its life.
- Delivers valuable nutrients to the brain to fight against brain related diseases.
- In the presence of sunlight, the body converts cholesterol to Vitamin D
- Supports the immune system by improving t-cell signalling and helps fight inflammation
The fact is, we need cholesterol to survive and function properly.
More importantly there has been no proven case study that links cholesterol with heart disease which originated from flawed research.
Who Should Not Go On A Keto Diet?
While the keto diet is perfectly safe for most of us like any diet there will be circumstances where this approach may not be for you.
Are you/do you:
- On medication for diabetes? (e.g. insulin)
- On medication for high blood pressure?
- Pregnant or breastfeeding?
- Have some form of metabolic disorder?
If you’re not sure if keto may be right for you then seek out medical advice.
Types Of Keto Diets
Standard Ketogenic Diet (SKD)
The SKD is the most common type of the ketogenic diet. On SKD you eat the lowest amount of daily carbs which is 0-50 grams of carbs per day. The standard ketogenic diet is the most common and fits the vast majority of people.
- The ratio is typically, 75% fat, 20% protein and 5% carbs
High-Protein Ketogenic Diet
This plan is similar to SKD, but incudes more protein.
- The ratio is typically 60% fat, 35% protein and 5% carbs
Cyclical Ketogenic Diet or CKD
This plan is widely used by athletes, bodybuilders, weight lifters and anyone participating in high intensity exercise and features short periods of high carb intake.
CKD is as the name suggests a cycling method where you will high carb and low carb days, for example Monday to Friday you will follow a Standard Keto Diet and then Saturday and Sunday introduce more carbs.
This is designed for people who want to carb-load after fully depleting their glycogen stores from high-intensity workouts during the SKD phase.
- 5 keto days followed by 2 high carb intake days.
Targeted Ketogenic Diet or TKD
TKD is a normal keto diet except that you are eating carbs around your workout times – 20-50 grams of carbs typically 30– 60 minutes prior to a high-intensity workout.
- High load carb intake based around workouts
Which One Is Best For Me?
Chances are that you’ll most likely only need to do the Standard Keto Diet however if you’re involved in intense physical exercise then try the other keto methods available.
Benefits Of A Ketogenic Diet
Science is showing a growing list of health benefits linked to the keto diet including:
- Reducing high blood pressure
- Reducing triglyceride levels (fat in the blood)
- Raising HDL cholesterol levels (a good sign of heart health)
- Lowering (or even reversing) type 1 & 2 diabetes and the research is exciting
But there is no magic bullet and keto is not immune to undesirable side effects which we’ll discuss later on in this guide.
Common Benefits From The Keto Diet:
Fat Loss & Muscle Preservation
This is by far the most common reason people go on this diet and scientific studies show time and again that the results from a low-carb diet outperform low-fat diets.
The reason for this as largely to do with insulin control – remember when I said that insulin is a storage hormone and when you eat sugar (carbohydrates) your body begins to store that energy as glycogen and then fat?
Well if you’re not eating enough carbs to trigger that hormone (and eating fat does not trigger insulin either) you’re only left with the ability to burn fat.
Your appetite will decrease – when you eat you meal will be rich in fat which is naturally more satisfying and keeps you fuller for longer.
Also, your meals will tend to be more nutritionally dense so there is less need for your body to trigger a hunger response.
Constant Energy And Mental Performance
Once you become efficient at breaking down fat you’ll notice that you have more energy and more importantly it’s stable – say good-bye to mid-afternoon crashes.
Cholesterol & Blood Sugar
A keto diet has been shown to improve/lower triglyceride levels in the blood along with improving cholesterol levels.
Reduced sugar cravings
A lot of sugar cravings are just related to having a “sweet tooth” often times this need for sugar is being driven by bad bacteria and yeast inside your gut.
Since the ketogenic diet is so low on sugar it creates an unliveable environment for sugar craving pathogens like candida leaving your gut healthy and your cravings less noticeable.
Mental Clarity And Enhanced Memory
One thing you’ll notice on the ketogenic diet is mental clarity.
Many people use the ketogenic diet specifically for the increased mental performance. Scientists have discovered increased mental clarity and memory largely due to stable blood sugars.
Helps Acne, Eczema And Other Diseases.
Carb-restriction creates BHB (one of the main ketones created on the keto diet) which inhibits inflammation which can help with arthritis, acne, psoriasis, eczema, IBS, and other diseases involving inflammation and pain.
Fewer Trips To The Bathroom
Some people on keto mention that they don’t go to the bathroom as often – sometimes this can be constipation which is common but can be solved.
But the other reason is that you’re producing less waste.
Eating a standard diet is full of processed crap which you have to rid yourself of constantly. The keto diet consists of whole foods (protein and fats) which means most of this food is being utilized inside the body.
Protein is being used to build and repair muscle along with providing some energy and fat is being used for energy, hormone production, building cell membranes and many other important body functions.
This means you won’t be going to the bathroom as much.
Lower Levels Of Visceral Fat
Research has shown that a low carb diet can help to reduce levels of visceral fat specifically rather than the superficial subcutaneous fat.
Visceral fat or belly fat is the most dangerous type of fat that is deeply embedded around major organs inside the body and a recent large study showed a significant correlation between waist size and reduced life expectancy in both men and women.
Stabilize Blood Sugar Levels
Since low carb eating eliminates insulin triggers, (sugars and starches) it is the diet of choice for those with prediabetes or those already diagnosed with type 1 or type 2 diabetes.
Eating a low carb diet reduces the need for the body to produce insulin, which is used to break down the glucose converted from dietary carbs in the blood stream.
What To Eat On Keto
Food actually delivers instructions to the body on how that food (energy) should be processed and handled by the body so it’s critical that you understand what foods to eat and avoid.
Basic rule of thumb:
Eat real foods which are low in carbs.
How many carbs can I eat per day?
Initially you want to keep your carbs to 0- 50 grams per day.
Once you’re happy with your weight and how your body looks then you can be a little more liberal increasing carbs from 50-100 but stay away from high-impact sugar i.e. ice cream and cakes etc.
How much protein should I eat?
This depends on your daily activity if you’re very active you may need more. The keto diet is s high fat diet not a high protein one so you want to keep your protein low-moderate.
The reason for this is that any excess protein will actually be broken down and then converted into glucose, this is called gluconeogenesis.
Eating More Fat - Isn’t fat unhealthy? Won’t I just get fat if I eat more fat?
Fat has been demonized and unfortunately what that means is that when you hear the word “fat” you automatically have a negative emotion towards it.
There are some fats that you should definitely stay away from these are called trans fats and are typically hidden inside of vegetable oils and margarines.
Eat fat to lose fat
Once sugar is out of the system and you’ve been eating a high fat diet you will start to become “fat-adapted” this means that your body has become efficient at burning fat for fuel and the longer you stay in this state the more ketones you produce and fat you burn.
The Truth About Fat
When you eat healthy, natural fats with minimal processing it does amazing things for your body for example it’s essential for growth, hormone development, provides energy, protects your organs, maintains cell membranes, and helps the body absorb and process nutrients.
Did you know that by adding butter to your greens you actually help your body absorb more nutrients from that vegetable?
Low-Carb vs. Low Fat Diets
Low-carb diets have consistently be shown to deliver surprising weight loss results over its low-fat counterpart for example, here are 23 randomized studies showing the surprising weight loss results between low-carb and low fat diets.
Foods You Can Eat:
Ideally you’ll want to eat meat that has lived in the sun, not caged and is grass-fed or has been eating its natural diet.
It’s worth repeating – try to stay away from caged animals.
You will want to keep your protein intake fairly low because protein can be converted into glucose which is what we’re trying to avoid.
Remember this is a high fat diet not a high protein diet.
Stay away from processed meats since they’ll typically contain a bunch of “extras” like sugars, additives and other nasties which can throw you out of ketosis.
Eggs are a fantastic source of nutrition and contain all kinds of valuable vitamins and minerals. Remember to avoid caged eggs.
Fish are an excellent food choice, try to go with wild caught species instead of farmed if possible. Go for fatty fish like salmon.
High Fat Sauces
High fat sauces are fantastic for upgrading your meal but make sure that your sauces don’t contain sugars.
Stay away from vegetables that grow below ground (carrots, potatoes, parsnips etc.) as they tend to be high-carb, instead opt for green vegetables.
What are the best vegetables to eat?
- Cauliflower – can be used for cauliflower rice and cauliflower mash.
- Cabbage – great for use in Asian dishes.
- Avocado – use this in guacamole, fried in butter, eaten raw or mashed in devilled eggs. It’s highly versatile but also high in healthy fats.
- Broccoli – use this to replace mash and rice. Fry in butter or oven roast with coconut oil and chili flakes.
- Zucchini – use this to make keto pasta or make zucchini chips.
- Spinach – mix in with an omelette , fritters or with boiled meats.
- Asparagus – oven bake with butter.
- Kale – roast in oven and turn into chips, eat raw or have inside a salad with oil dressing.
- Green beans – good with butter and a low carb hot sauce.
- Brussel sprouts – use in a fry-up with bacon.
Each of these vegetables are perfect for keto because they’re low in carbs but also highly versatile.
Foods to avoid
- Sports drinks
- Ice cream
- Breakfast cereals
- Breads (including wholegrain)
Avoid foods that advertise themselves as “low carb” as they have gotten quite good at hiding their sugar content.
Read food labels
If you’re buying whole foods that don’t come in packaging then they’re safe to eat but watch for products that come pre-packaged.
Learn to read the food information on the back of the product and I’m not just talking about the nutritional breakdown – look at the actual ingredients list.
The ingredients are placed in order of quantity so the first ingredient is the most common, the 2nd ingredient is the 2nd most common and so on.
Look out for sugar
When you look at the ingredients list don’t just look for the word “sugar” because a lot of companies disguise it in different ways here are some of them.
Anhydrous dextrose, brown sugar, cane crystals, cane sugar, corn sweetener, corn syrup, corn syrup solids, crystal dextrose, evaporated cane juice, fructose sweetener, fruit juice concentrates, high-fructose corn syrup, honey, liquid fructose, malt syrup, maple syrup.
How To Reach Ketosis
Reaching ketosis is the goal, I’m not going to lie, if you’re used to eating a lot of carbs you may feel a little “off” for a few days but once come through the other side and reach ketosis you’ll feel completely different – in a good way!
Reaching a state of ketosis is straightforward, here are some main points to guide you along the way:
Restrict Your Carb Intake
Aim to keep your carbs below 35 grams of net carbs per day. What are “net carbs”? This is the total carbohydrates minus the carbs that come from fibre. Fibre doesn’t spike insulin so there’s no need to include it in your carb numbers.
Watch Your Protein Intake
When you consume more protein than your body needs the excess is converted into glucose which is not good for your keto efforts.
Eat Then Fast
Keto is about letting go of mainstream ideas, one of those ideas is “eating 6 times per day”. This is one of the reasons why people are getting fat – because we’re consuming sugar multiple times per day.
Eating frequently is also hard on your stomach as it has to process food all day long – it never gets a break.
Instead, learn to eat and then fast. Eat your 1st meal of the day (it doesn’t have to be at breakfast time) then don’t eat for 4-5 hours then eat another meal.
Keto is a fat dominant way of eating – this is where you will get your energy from so don’t restrict it. Fat is satiating and will keep you full for hours.
Drink Plenty Of Water And Keep Up Your Electrolytes
While on keto you will lose electrolytes since you won’t be eating sugary foods like fruit, so it’s important that replenish what you lose. Electrolytes are incredibly important for your body to function properly.
Add more natural salt to your foods, make your own electrolyte drinks – do not buy store bought drinks since they’re just sugar water.
Fasting is good
Fasting helps you deplete your glycogen stores faster and may help you enter ketosis faster. Fasting also has a long list of health benefits including boosting your metabolism, lowering blood pressure and inflammation and boosting fat loss.
Keto and fasting go well together so you may find that the time between meals is considerably longer by default.
Exercise speeds up glycogen depletion so it’s great to add this in at the start. Do not engage in intense exercise, keep it moderate at first. If you’re already doing some form of training that’s great and will help you while you’re on the keto diet.
There are a ton of supplements on the market right now for keto – while not typically needed, they can help you on your keto journey.
How Will You Know If You’re In Ketosis?
While you can use urine strips or a blood meter] here are a few physical indicators that you’re in ketosis.
Bad ‘Fruity’ Breath
When you’re breaking down fatty acids you release acetone which is one of the main ketones we discussed in the chapter one. This ketone a released through your urine and also your breath leaving a distinct smell – some liken it to overripe fruit or nail polish remover.
You can use a breath analyser to measure this also.
This will go away after a few weeks.
You will lose weight rapidly in the initial stages but this is mostly water weight lost through losing carbohydrates.
Reduced appetite is also a good indicator – you’ll find that you’re effortlessly going hours before wanting to eat again.
Ketones In Your Urine
Urine strips can measure ketones in your urine but they tend to be quite inaccurate.
Alternatively, you can use a glucose meter, it’s slightly more pricier but more accurate.
Keto is a natural diuretic, so you tend to visit the bathroom a little more. Make sure you get in plenty of water and electrolytes.
Fatigue And Then More Energy and Focus
I mentioned this earlier, but during the first week or so you will feel like something is not right – you’ll feel fatigue as well – it’s not a fun time.
However once you shift past burning glucose to burning ketones it will feel like a dark cloud has broken and you will feel your energy rushing back along with sharp mental focus.
I felt amazing once I had made the shift!
Keto Macros -
How To Get Into And Stay In Ketosis
For keto to work you need to keep a rough estimate of the nutritional value of the food that you’re eating so you don’t kick yourself out of keto and end up having to repeat the process all over again – this means monitoring your macros.
What are macros?
Macro is short for “macronutrients” which cover the big 3:
The good news is we (mostly) only need to monitor these 3 areas.
I’m just going to address the Standard Ketogenic Diet (which almost everyone will be using) your macros for SKD will be made up of the following percentages:
- Fat – 70-80%
- Carbs – 5-10%
- Protein – 20-25%
Unlike low-carb diets which typically require high protein, on keto protein must be keep to low-moderate quantities.
You will need to eat protein to help regulate organ function and help repair muscle tissue – you may need a little more if you’re involved in frequent or high intensity exercise.
Eating Too much protein can kick you out of ketosis.
When you eat too much protein your body converts that excess protein into glucose through a mechanism called gluconeogenesis.
The goal of course is to avoid producing too much glucose as it converts you back into sugar burning instead of fat burning.
To prevent gluconeogenesis, avoid eating more than 1.5 to 2g of protein per kg of lean body mass (0.68 – 1g of protein per lb. of lean body mass).
For most people of the population, keeping your carbohydrates to about 20-50 grams per day is fine to stay in ketosis.
If you used the standard keto calculator, then your target carbs should be in this optimal range.
Carbs and sugars are hidden in a lot of food and you would be surprised at many you’re actually eating in an average day – it’s very easy to overshoot here so if you monitor nothing else just keep an eye on the quantity of carbs you’re consuming day to day.
You’re going to want to get your carbs from vegetables (and some fruits) that grow above ground.
Sweet fruits (banana, dates, watermelon), starchy veggies (potatoes, carrots, sweet potatoes), and refined grains like bread, pasta, and cookies are a definite no-go zone.
If you’re starting out on keto you need to understand how much food you need to eat.
The majority of your calories will come from fat – that’s around 70-80%.
Eat High Quality Health Fats Only
When you eat protein meats will get fats from that – make sure you’re getting the fatty cuts of meat.
Try to avoid protein and fat that come from sick animals
If you’re budget can afford it buy meat that came from animals that were out in the sunlight and preferably eating their natural diet.
Here are a few items that are not only rich in fat but also healthy:
- Coconut oil
- MCT oil and powder
- Nuts and seeds (macadamia, chia seeds, flaxseed)
- Nuts and seed butters (almond butter, sunflower butter, peanut butter)
Should You Track Your Macros?
Starting out it’s a good idea because it gets you up to speed on what each portion of food is worth in terms of its macros.
I recommend tracking your macros for the first 30-90 days.
Once you feel comfortable with your foods then just go by your own rough estimates, if you notice you’re putting on weight then go back to tracking.
The other time you should track is if you’ve perhaps hit your goal weight but then decide that you want to either increase or further decrease your weight.
Use An App To Quickly And Easily Track Your Macros
A handy way of tracking your macros is by using fitness and nutrition apps – MyFitness Pal is a good one to use as it has a large food database.
Remember you’re not concerned so much with micronutrients (vitamins and minerals) just look at fats, carbs and proteins.
Finding Your Current Calorie Requirements
What we want to do now is find out how many calories you need to hit every day – use a keto calculator below.
IMPORTAT: Don’t get too caught up on calories chances are once you go into ketosis you’ll be able to eat more while losing more weight and have more energy - we’re only looking for a starting point.
First, let’s look at our macros again in terms of the energy output:
- Fat = 9 calories per gram
- Carbohydrate = 4 calories per gram
- Protein = 4 calories per gram
Next we want to find a starting point in terms of how many of each of these macros we should be consuming daily.
For this use a keto calculator.
A keto calculator will take in information like your age, sex, activity level, ask you how much weight you would like to lose and give you the recommended quantities of Carbs, Protein and Fats.
What Happens To Your Body On Keto
Keto affects everyone differently however for most transitioning from burning glucose as your fuel to forcing your body to now burn ketones can feel a little weird.
During the initial stages your muscles will lose their glycogen stores which will leave you feeling weaker and with less energy – so it is recommended that you keep your physical activity light or even just use this for time off until the transition is complete.
This is often referred to as keto flu.
During the keto flu phase (typically begins 2-3 days after starting keto) you may experience things like:
- Light nausea
The cause of Keto Flu is that you’re losing carbohydrates and with those carbohydrates water and salt.
I realize this is a little redundant but It’s worth repeating – oversalt your food and drink plenty of water.
This is only a temporary phase while your body adjusts work through it because once your body settles into keto you will come back mentally sharp, high energy and shedding those fat pounds!
Common Side Effects On The Keto Diet
During this period you can reduce the effects of the “flu” by increasing your water and salt intake.
Muscle cramps happen due to mineral loss up your magnesium specifically as a lot of it is lost due to increased urination.
Constipation is a typical side effect but is usually remedied by increasing water and sodium intake.
While getting into keto you will be urinating more as the carbohydrates leave your body, this can dry out your colon causing constipation.
Another thing to do is eat more fibre – fibre acts like an irritant inside your body so it tries to get rid of it often carrying other waste out with it.
Reduced Physical Performance
If you go to the gym you will most likely noticed an impact on your energy and/or strength – this only happens while your body is adapting so it is recommended that during the first few weeks you only engage in moderate exercise.
A common complaint (typically from friends and family) is bad breath often mirroring fermenting fruit or nail polish remover.
This odour comes from the ketone acetone is is aby product of burning fat which means that you’re turning into a fat burning machine!
For most this is only temporary and will disappear after 2-3 weeks.
In the meantime get that breath spray working!
You may notice that your heart rate is slightly more elevated and/or beating harder than normal – this is very common and is nothing to worry about.
It’s mostly related to dehydration which reduces the amount of blood in circulation which means the heart has to pump a little harder.
Increase your salts and fluids and monitor it.
If it persists, try upping your carbohydrates ever so slightly.
When switching to a low-carb high fat diet you may notice your cholesterol markers going up or a better way to say it is that your cholesterol markers will be improved as you will be increasing your HDL (the good cholesterol) numbers.
This will actually reduce the chances of heart disease.
However, high cholesterol can be dangerous if the level of LDL (bad cholesterol) is elevating beyond acceptable levels – while this occurs in 1-2% of the population it needs to be taken very seriously and is worthwhile monitoring your cholesterol levels regularly if you find that you are in this minority.