7 Best Ways To Lower Your Cholesterol

Cholesterol is produced from the carbs and fats that we eat. It is extremely essential for the body to work in a proper manner.

However, too much cholesterol in the body leads to its build-up in the walls of our arteries and this increases the risk of cardiovascular diseases. Thus, it becomes essential to lower cholesterol in your daily diet, especially if tests have proved that your levels are too high.

Here are eight ways to lower your cholesterol:

(1) Quit smoking.
Smoking results in the inner lining of the arteries, or the endothelium, getting damaged. The carcinogens and carbon monooxide present in cigarette smoke result in the arteries becoming more prone to spasms, thus leading to high levels of cholesterol in the blood. Cigarette smoking lowers a person’s high density lipoprotein cholesterol (HDL) or “good” cholesterol while raising levels of low-density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDL) or “bad” cholesterol. At times, smokers can also suffer from heart palpitations that can affect their overall quality of life.

(2) Exercise most days of the week.
Whether you are trying to prevent high cholesterol or you have already been diagnosed with it, exercise is great medication. It is no rocket science that exercise helps to lower high levels of cholesterol and keep heart diseases at bay.

Experts suggest that at least 40 minutes to 60 minutes of exercise on a daily basis helps in lowering 5 to 10% of LDL cholesterol and HDL cholesterol can be raised between 3 to 6%. Irrespective of whatever type, intensity and genre of exercise, you go for, it is an essential component of your cholesterol-lowering regimen.

(3) Reduce saturated fats and banish trans fats from your diet completely.
You should avoid fatty meats, egg yolks, fried foods, whole-milk dairy products and commercially baked products. This is because saturated and trans fats raise the LDL (bad) cholesterol more than the levels of dietary cholesterol itself. The recommended daily intake of saturated fat is 20 grams or less, so watch out for foods that contain high levels of saturated or trans fat and make sure you stay below the recommended daily level.

(4) Consume alcohol in moderation.
Moderate consumption of alcohol consists of one to two alcoholic drinks per day for men and one alcoholic drink per day for women. However, if you exceed this amount then you are more likely to store fat and add to the luxury of your waistline, thus adding to your cholesterol levels.

(5) Lose weight if you are obese/overweight.
Lose weight, if you are obese and particularly around your waist. Exercise daily. Any kind of additional activity will work as well; try your hand at a mix of activities like walking, weight training, aerobics, cycling, playing sports, as this will help increase good cholesterol and lower bad cholesterol and triglycerides.

Obesity can cause what’s known as insulin resistance, a condition in which the body can’t use the hormone insulin properly. Released by the pancreas, insulin turns glucose into the blood and then into energy. Insulin resistance often leads to two of the most dreadful lifestyle conditions- one is diabetes and the second one is high levels of cholesterol.

(6) Eat more spinach.
It is believed that spinach contains around 13 flavonoid compounds which keep us away from cancer, heart diseases and osteoporosis. 1/2 cup of this lutein-rich food daily guards us against heart attacks.

(7) Go fish.
Full of Omega-3 fatty acids, fishes are natural health wonders, which help in keeping heart diseases at bay. Avoid heart attacks, stroke and high cholesterol levels with the help of these potent nutrient-rich protein. According to medical experts, a diet rich in seafood, especially fish, helps in raising good cholesterol levels. Plant sources of omega-3s include soybeans, canola, flax seeds, walnuts, and their oils.

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