Natural ways to lower your cholesterol
When last you have cholesterol level screened? Or are you one of those who have never even done it? If you have not, then you should start taking this serious, most especially if you are 20 or older or you come from a family with a history of heart diseases.
Cardiologists recommends that everyone older than 20 should be screened for high cholesterol at least once every five years, with more frequent screenings for anyone deemed to be at high risk for heart disease. High cholesterol increases your risk of heart disease and heart attacks so knowing the levels of your cholesterol are equally important.
However, lifestyle changes can help reduce cholesterol level or even help with your cholesterol medications. Here are lifestyle changes to get you started or better still, natural ways to lower your cholesterol.
Eat heart healthy foods
When you make few changes in your diet it can help improve your heart health. Although, it might seem a lot hard adjusts to heart friendlier foods which you are not used too but its worth going an extra healthy mile just to stay alive. Choose healthier fats instead of saturated fats like the one found in meat and dairy products because they raise your total cholesterol and low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol, the “bad” cholesterol.
Do away with transfat they can be found in fried foods and many commercial products, such as cookies, crackers and snack cakes. Eat foods rich in omega-3 fatty acids, increase soluble fiber and add whey protein to your meals. Studies have shown that this a ways to lower your cholesterol.
Another great way you can lower bad cholesterol is to do regular exercise. A lot of benefits come from moderate exercises like brisk walking, riding a bike, swimming and so on. Moderate physical activity can help raise high-density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol, the “good” cholesterol. However, you need to seek the consent of your doctor before embarking on any exercise, if you are okay, then 30 minutes exercise every day will be a lot of good to your heart. To stay motivated, find an exercise buddy or join an exercise group. And remember, any activity is helpful. Even taking the stairs instead of the elevator or doing a few situps while watching television can make a difference.
Are you a chronic smoker? Well, if you love your heart, then you better quit smoking. When you quit smoking it helps improves your HDL cholesterol level. And the benefits don’t end there. Within 20 minutes of quitting, your blood pressure and heart rate decrease. Within one year, your risk of heart disease is half that of a smoker. Within 15 years, your risk of heart disease is similar to someone who never smoked.
Shed the weight
If have piled on the weight then this the right time to shed the weight because it contributes to high cholesterol. Start by evaluating your eating habits and daily routine. Consider your challenges to weight loss and ways to overcome them. Look for ways to incorporate more activity into your daily routine, such as using the stairs instead of taking the elevator or parking farther from your office.
Drink alcohol only in moderation
Moderate use of alcohol has been linked with higher levels of HDL cholesterol — but the benefits aren’t strong enough to recommend alcohol for anyone who doesn’t already drink. If you drink alcohol, do so in moderation. For healthy adults, that means up to one drink a day for women of all ages and men older than age 65, and up to two drinks a day for men age 65 and younger. Too much alcohol can lead to serious health problems, including high blood pressure, heart failure and stroke.
Experts have suggested that green tea is a healthier alternative to sodas and sugary beverages. Indeed, research in both animals and humans has shown that green tea contains compounds that can help lower LDL cholesterol. In a small study conducted in Brazil, people who took capsules containing a green tea extract were able to reduce their total cholesterol.
Extensive research has demonstrated that regular consumption of nuts can bring modest reductions in cholesterol. Walnuts and almonds seem particularly beneficial. But nuts are high in calories, so limit yourself to a handful a day, experts said which is a sure ways to lower your cholesterol.