Cholesterol is a fatlike substance that is synthesised in the liver and found in the brain, nerves, liver, blood, and bile, and is essential in the production of sex hormones, nerve function, and other vital processes. High cholesterol and tritriglyceride levels lead to plaque filled arteries that impede blood flow to the brain, kidneys,genitals, extremities, and the heart. High cholesterol levels are the main cause of heart disease because the falike substance is deposited in the arteries. High cholesterol is implicated in gallstones, impotence, mental impairment and high blood pressure. Colon polyps and cancer (especially prostate and breast cancer) have also been linked to high cholesterol.

Cholesterol levels are greatly influenced by the diet and and eating foods high in cholesterol and/or saturated fat increases levels, whilst a vegetarian diet, regular exercise and the nutrients niacin and vitamin C, can all help to reduce cholesterol.