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Why is HDL cholesterol considered to be good?

HDL (high-density lipoprotein) cholesterol is considered to be good because it helps the body metabolize and get rid of LDL (low-density lipoprotein) cholesterol and other harmful forms of lipids. A low level of HDL limits the body's ability to protect blood vessels from the damage of cholesterol and increases the risk of stroke and heart attacks.
While LDL (bad) cholesterol transports cholesterol around the body and deposits it in the arteries, HDL (good) cholesterol may actually remove cholesterol from the arteries and transport it back to the liver to be processed and disposed.  Having high levels of HDL provides great protection from cardiovascular disease.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.