Apart from drugs, doctors will recommend a change in diet and exercise as the best way to control your cholesterol level. However, any person with a high level of cholesterol will need to do a lot to keep the health of their heart at excellent levels.
Cholesterol is insoluble in water. Therefore, it depends on lipoproteins to transport it. There are different kinds of lipoproteins, which have varying effects on health.
For instance, low-density lipoprotein (LDL) in high amounts result in cholesterol deposits in blood vessel walls. In turn, it leads to clogged arteries, strokes, heart attacks, and kidney failure.
On the other hand, high-density lipoprotein (HDL) carries cholesterol away from walls; thus, it helps to prevent these diseases.
You can decrease the amount of bad cholesterol and increase the high-density lipoprotein in the body without drugs. Tray the following methods.
1. Eliminate-trans fats and saturated fats
Trans-fats have a strong link to heart disease. The only source of these fats is diet.
Usually, these fats are created by the addition of hydrogen to a liquid fat to solidify it.
Trans-fats have and advantage of extending the shelf life of baked foods, and that’s why most manufacturers use them. Additionally, you can reuse them as many times as you wish.
To avoid eating such fats, you need to look at the label on food packages before purchasing them. Terms like hydrogenated or partially hydrogenated indicate that you should not buy the product.
Keep in mind that saturated fats and dietary cholesterol aren’t precisely heart-healthy, so you need to eat them in small amounts.
2. Focus on Monounsaturated Fats
Monounsaturated fats have a single double bond, which changes the way the body utilizes them. That is why when you take a diet high in monounsaturated fats, it reduces harmful cholesterol and also protects higher levels of healthy HDL. (1)
A study conducted on the importance of monounsaturated fats on patients with high blood cholesterol concluded that it increased beneficial HDL by 12%, as compared to a diet low in saturated fat
Additionally, monounsaturated fats may reduce the oxidation of lipoproteins, a compound that contributes to clogged arteries.
3. Eat foods rich in omega-3 fatty acids or Polyunsaturated Fats
Omega-3 fatty acids do not affect LDL cholesterol. However, they pack a whole range of benefits to the heart. For instance, they can reduce blood pressure effectively.
In a study of 115 adults, shows that total and LDL cholesterol levels were reduced by 10% when polyunsaturated fats changed with saturated fat in their diet for eight weeks.
Foods rich in these fatty acids include salmon, mackerel, herring, walnuts, and flaxseeds.
4. Add whey protein
Whey protein is found in dairy products, which, according to studies, has shown that a supplement of whey product lowers both LDL cholesterol and total cholesterol.
Also, it moderates blood pressure.
5. Increase soluble fiber
Soluble fiber has the potential to decrease the absorption of cholesterol into the bloodstream.
According to one study of 30 adults, LDL was decreased by 18% when eating 3 grams of soluble fiber supplements daily for 12 weeks.
When you eat food rich in soluble, you reduce the amount of bad cholesterol in your body. Such foods include oatmeal, kidney beans, Brussels sprouts, apples, and pears.
6. Increase your physical activity
Exercise improves cholesterol. Studies have shown that regular exercise can raise the level of good cholesterol, i.e., high-density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol.
A doctor recommends an exercise session of at least 30 minutes, about five times a week. For healthier individuals, vigorous aerobic activity for 20 minutes three times a week.
7. Lose Weight
Losing weight can impact the type of cholesterol and their concentration in the body. Still, it affects the way your body absorbs the cholesterol.
A diet that causes weight loss increased the absorption of cholesterol from the diet while decreasing the creation of new cholesterol.
Typically, it increases LDL and increases HDL as well as providing more heart protection.
8. Quit smoking
Smoking affects your cholesterol. Essentially, when you quit smoking, you improve your HDL cholesterol level. This has fast occurring benefits such as:
- Your heart rate and blood pressure usually recover within 20 minutes of stopping smoking
- Blood circulation and lung function typically begin to improve within three months of quitting smoking
- The odds of developing heart disease, within a year, reduce to half as compared to a smoker when you quit smoking
9. Drink alcohol in moderation
Taking alcohol in moderation can increase levels of HDL cholesterol. However, the benefits are no strong enough to justify the recommendation of alcohol to people. This is only for alcoholics. Adults should take one drink a day.
High alcohol intake leads to conditions like high blood pressure, heart failure, and strokes.
High Cholesterol is bad for our heart and health. We can lower it naturally by changing our lifestyle and living habits.