Will A Keto Diet Lower Triglycerides And Cholesterol
No, keto diets have been shown to increase cholesterol levels. The Mediterranean diet, however, has been shown to lower cholesterol levels and reduce the risk of cardiac events.
The Mediterranean diet promotes eating vegetables, fruits, whole grains, and healthy fats daily eating fish, poultry, beans, and eggs weekly reducing portions of dairy and limiting red meat.
Putting It All Together
Improving triglyceride levels is simple. From a dietary perspective, all you have to do is two things: eat fewer carbs and eat more marine-derived omega 3s.
The best way to do this is by implementing a Mediterranean-style ketogenic diet. To follow this diet correctly, you must:
- Restrict carbohydrate
- Eat plenty of nuts, olives/olive oil, low-carb vegetables, and fatty fish like sardines and salmon
To enhance your results, you can also:
- Restrict calories to lose weight
- Implement a sleep schedule and improve sleep quality
- Exercise for at least 30 minutes a day
- Supplement with marine-derived omega 3s, curcumin, niacin, and/or garlic extract
- Eat more MCTs from coconut oil or an MCT oil supplement
- Avoid alcohol, trans fats, and added sugar
However, even if you implement these triglyceride lowering suggestions flawlessly, you will only know if they worked by getting a blood test.
The Best Diet For Lowering Triglycerides: A Mediterranean
Throughout the research on lowering triglycerides, two trends emerge. The first is that limiting carbohydrates and increasing fat consumption leads to lower triglyceride levels. The second is that polyunsaturated fats decrease triglycerides more than any other fat.
If we combine these two trends together, we come out with a Mediterranean-style ketogenic diet that restricts carbohydrates more than any other diet and places emphasis on omega-3 rich fish like sardines and salmon and polyunsaturated fat rich nuts and olive oil.
The Mediterranean-style Ketogenic Diet will also provide a healthier amount of vegetables, fiber, and protein than a typical Americans diet, which further improves triglyceride levels.
Not sure what a Mediterranean-style Ketogenic meal would look like? Here are some delicious examples:
Or have a can of sardines on a delicious Oven Roasted Caprese Salad.
Don’t Miss: Can High Cholesterol Cause Fatigue
What Is The Best Triglyceride Lowering Diet Low
Lets start by comparing two ends of the dietary spectrum Low-carb versus low-fat.
A recent meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials evaluated the effects that low-carb and low-fat diets had on triglyceride levels with conclusive results. Researchers found greater reductions in triglyceride levels on the low-carb diet.
In another study by Bonow and Eckel, the two scientists concluded that low-carb diets produced a more robust triglyceride-lowering effect than low-fat diets, even if there was a similar magnitude of weight loss after one year.
These studies confirm what we found above. Eat more carbohydrates and less fat, and youll increase your triglyceride levels. Eat fewer carbs and more fat, and the opposite will occur. In fact, researchers found that for every 5% decrease in total fat, triglyceride level was predicted to increase by 6% and HDL cholesterol to decrease by 2.2%.
However, there could be other variables at play in this case. When you reduce fat consumption, youll be more likely to eat processed carbohydrates, which limit fat burning and increase fat production. So, high triglycerides levels only have to do with increased processed sugar consumption, right? Not quite.
However, there is another diet that heralded more than the low-carbohydrate ketogenic diet for its health benefits. Could this diet be the perfect balance of carbs and fats? Or is the low-carbohydrate diet always better?
Do High Triglyceride Levels Affect Hdl And Cholesterol Levels
Triglycerides are involved in the transport of fatty acids to muscles and tissues for energy.
- HDL particles are involved in the transport of excess fatty acids from the periphery back to the liver for elimination. Because of these competing roles, it is very difficult to increase HDL, the healthy good cholesterol, without first addressing triglycerides.
- HDL not only transports excess lipid to the liver for disposal, but it also transports cholesterol to organs such as the adrenals, ovaries, and testes for steroid hormone synthesis.
- Many of the strategies discussed here that lower triglycerides are also known to raise HDL.
Health Solutions From Our Sponsors
Medically Reviewed on 5/6/2022Journal of Microbiology and BiotechnologyPoultry ScienceCirculationEuropean Journal of Clinical NutritionCanadian Journal of Physiology and PharmacologyPhysiological Research
Recommended Reading: Is Ham High In Cholesterol
What Can You Do To Lower High Triglyceride Levels
Because your body can get triglycerides from the food you eat, it makes sense that changing your diet can help if you’re concerned with your triglyceride levels. In general, according to Ash, it’s important to reduce your intake of refined flour, processed and packaged foods that contain trans fats, high fructose corn syrup, and excess carbs and sugars that are bad news for your health.
One key nutrient to keep in mind is fat. According to Ash, switching out the types of fat you eat can make a huge difference. “Trans fats and polyunsaturated fats, like the fat in canola oil, are going to be the biggest offenders because they burden the liver, which is going to manufacture more triglycerides in order to make more LDL. So what we’re eating and how we’re supporting the liver is really what’s going to matter when it comes to triglycerides,” she says.
That said, fat is only one factor to consider when it comes to food. “Specific to food, fat itself is often not the culprit,” says registered dietitian Amanda Archibald, founder of The Genomic Kitchen. “Excess calories from alcohol or starchy/sugary foods are often more complicit in producing high triglycerides.”
If your doctor has told you your triglyceride levels are on the high side, it’s worth asking them what foods to avoid and what lifestyle changes could help. Chances are, you’ll want to exercise more and go easy on trans fats and simple carbs.
How To Reduce Triglyceride Level Naturally
Its important to note that, triglycerides are basically fat present in the blood , and can be reduced by burning the body calorie level through exercise and a well-planned diet. Some of the natural ways of reducing triglycerides include:
Exercise: Engaging in more physical activities will greatly reduce the number of calories in the bloodstream, and as such lower the level of triglyceride in the body naturally, without the use of supplements.
Obesity is another factor that contributes to high triglyceride level in the body. If you happen to be overweight, working on losing few pounds will go a long way in lowering the level of triglyceride in the bloodstream.
Eating Healthy: Choosing your diet carefully can help reduce the amount of triglyceride in the bloodstream. Reducing the amount of processed food and sugar would help lower the level of blood triglyceride.
Diet high in carbohydrate can greatly increase the level of blood sugar and therefore influence the level of triglyceride in the body. Avoid loading up excessively on carbohydrate high food.
Food rich in omega-3-fatty acid, vegetables, and whole grain is good diet for lowering the triglyceride level.
Reduce Alcohol:Alcohol has been linked to increased level of triglyceride in most people. Reducing the intake of alcohol is another effective natural means of lowering triglyceride.
You May Like: How Much Cholesterol Is In Nuts
Reduction Of Sugar And Carb Intake
Excess sugar and carbohydrates amount to calories in our diets. The excess calories are stored by the body as triglycerides for future use.
After digestion, carbohydrate and sugar are changed into glycogen, their storage forms. The conversion of carbs into triglycerides are made possible with insulin.
Insulin is produced by the body when the level of glucose in the blood becomes high. Simple sugars are easily converted to triglycerides, unlike complex carbohydrates.
What Causes High Triglycerides
Aside from consuming a high-fat and/or high-carb diet, other lifestyle factors can contribute to high triglycerides, specifically excess weight, lack of exercise, drinking too much alcohol and smoking. Dr. Malaney adds that it can also be a side effect of certain medications, such as some birth control pills, beta blockers, antipsychotics medications, and corticosteroids.
Read Also: How Can Ldl Cholesterol Be Lowered
Increase Your Intake Of Unsaturated Fats
Studies show that monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats can reduce blood triglyceride levels, especially when theyre replacing carbs in your diet .
Monounsaturated fats are found in foods like olive oil, nuts, and avocados. Polyunsaturated fats are present in vegetable oils and fatty fish, as well as nuts and seeds such as walnuts, flaxseeds, and chia seeds.
A 2019 review of 27 studies reported that while olive oil consumption does decrease triglycerides levels, it does so significantly less than other types of plant oil .
One older study analyzed the diets of 452 adults in a specific population of Indigenous people in Alaska over the previous 24 hours.
It found that saturated fat intake was associated with increased blood triglycerides, while polyunsaturated fat intake was associated with lower triglyceride levels .
To maximize the triglyceride-lowering benefits of unsaturated fats, pick a heart-healthy fat like olive oil and use it to replace other types of fat in your diet, such as trans fats or highly processed vegetable oils .
Monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats can decrease blood triglyceride levels, especially when theyre consumed in place of other fats.
Health Conditions Related To Triglycerides And Cholesterol
High blood lipid levels may increase your risk for plaques to develop in your arteries or thicken the walls of your arteries .
Other health conditions related to high triglycerides or cholesterol include:
- High blood sugar levels or diabetes
- Metabolic syndromea cluster of conditions that increase your risk for heart disease
- Genetic conditions
You May Like: Does Smoking Increase Bad Cholesterol
Possible New Treatment For High Triglycerides
In the report in The New England Journal of Medicine, an international team of researchers describe a new therapy for high triglycerides. It involves a weekly injection of “antisense oligonucleotides” , pieces of DNA that short-circuit the livers production of triglycerides. The new report shows that ASOs can reduce triglyceride levels by as much as 70%.
Keep in mind that this was a phase 2 trial, which is designed to test whether a drug does what it is supposed to do . Larger, longer-term studies will be needed to see whether ASOs actually reduce the risk of heart disease, and what sorts of side effects they cause.
Many experimental medications that sparkle in early testing never become FDA-approved drugs. We wont know for several years whether ASOs will become available for individuals with high triglycerides.
Ask Your Doctor About Natural Supplements
Several natural supplements could have the potential to lower blood triglycerides. Always speak with your doctor before starting any supplements, as they can interact with other medications.
Note especially that the Food and Drug Administration does not regulate supplements in the same way as it regulates pharmaceuticals, and supplement quality can vary widely.
Below are a few of the main supplements that have been studied:
- Fish oil. Well known for its potent effects on heart health, fish oil is rich in omega-3 fatty acids, which have been shown to decrease triglycerides and several other risk factors for heart disease (
Several supplements have been studied for their ability to lower triglyceride levels, including fish oil, fenugreek, garlic extract, guggul, and curcumin.
Read Also: How To Boost Good Cholesterol
How Can Triglyceride Levels Be Lowered
If your triglyceride levels are high, the next step is for your doctor to check for potential causes. Certain medications, thyroid function issues, poorly controlled diabetes, liver or kidney disease can all cause triglyceride levels to be higher than normal.
The first steps in treatment to lower triglyceride levels include eating a healthy diet, achieving and maintaining a healthy weight, and aerobic exercise on a regular basis.
To lower your triglyceride levels, your diet should be:
- low in fats
- low in simple carbohydrates
- low in alcohol
If you have high triglycerides and low HDL or high LDL levels, you may need to take medication along with making lifestyle changes. If your triglyceride levels are in the very high range you are at risk to develop other medical problems, so you will most likely need to take medication.
How To Lower Triglycerides
Your doctor will determine if you need treatment to lowering triglycerides by talking with you about your current diet and lifestyle, and evaluating your triglyceride level, your LDL cholesterol level, and your potential risk factors for coronary heart disease.
Here are some of the reasons your doctor might discuss medications to lower triglycerides with you:
- You have metabolic syndrome. This condition includes a combination of abdominal obesity, high triglycerides, and high blood pressure. If you have metabolic syndrome and tried diet and lifestyle changes for three months without success, triglyceride-lowering medications may be needed.
- Previous medication lowered your total cholesterol but not your triglycerides. If your cholesterol is well controlled, but your triglyceride level is still too high, at or above 200 mg/dL, triglyceride-lowering medications may help.
- You have very high triglycerides. If your triglyceride level is at or higher than 500 mg/dL, you may need to start medications to lower triglycerides even before reaching lower cholesterol levels.
Get Rid Of The Trans Fatty Foods
- Trans fatty foods are as harmful as poison. Artificial trans fat additives are injected into the foods to enhance their shelf-life. The most common examples of trans fatty foods include baked and fried foods that contain partially hydrogenated oils.
- Trans fats are inflammatory. The consumption of such foods triggers health problems like an increase in the levels of unhealthy LDL cholesterol, triglycerides, and blood pressure.
- So, it is recommended to cut down on the intake of fried, baked, and processed foods to decrease the level of triglycerides in the blood.
Foods That Could Help Lower Triglycerides
Chances are, you’ve heard that having healthy triglyceride levels in your blood is important. But what exactly are triglycerides, and how do they work in your body? And when you have high levels, is it possible to manage them with lifestyle, and can food make a difference? The good news is, according to food and health pros, what you eat can help. We’ve rounded up some of the foods that can lower triglycerides, and there are plenty of whole foods on the list.
You May Like: How To Reduce Cholesterol Fast
Some People May Respond Best To A Low
For those with severely elevated triglycerides , there is a case for low-fat diets being equally good if not better than low carb in some situations.
One study finds that those with triglycerides below 400 mg/dL respond best to low-carb diets, but those with triglycerides greater than 400 mg/dL respond best to low-fat diets.24
However, case reports document a decrease in severely elevated triglycerides with low-carb, high-fat diets.25
Its important to understand the cause of elevated triglycerides, as that may impact the proposed dietary treatment. If someone has a genetic cause, such as familial chylomicronemia or lipoprotein lipase deficiency, a low-fat diet may be more effective.26
Aside from these extreme examples, there is no evidence to support a low-fat diet as being better than a low-carb diet for reducing elevated triglycerides.
What To Look For In A Supplement
Dietary supplements arent regulated in the U.S., so its impossible to know just what youre getting when you pluck a bottle off the shelfunless it has USP Dietary Supplement Verification, which means the product has been tested to verify it contains what the label says it does. Just look for the USP seal on the label.
Choose an over-the-counter omega-3 supplement thats purified and contains EPA and DHA, says Robert Greenfield, M.D., a cardiologist at Memorial Care Heart and Vascular Institute at Orange Coast Medical Center in Fountain Valley, CA.
Also Check: What Foods Help With High Cholesterol
Good Cholesterol Vs Bad Cholesterol
When your doctor checks your cholesterol with a blood test called a lipid panel, the results arent simply one number. A full picture of your cholesterol level and whether or not it needs lowering comes from four separate but related values: LDL, HDL, triglycerides, and total blood cholesterol.
LDL, often referred to as bad cholesterol, stands for low-density lipoprotein. LDL transports cholesterol through your bloodstream to your cells. The bad part of LDL is that in high levels, it tends to build up fatty plaques inside your arteries a condition called atherosclerosis. Atherosclerosis reduces blood flow through the affected arteries, leading to an increased risk of heart and kidney disease, peripheral artery disease, stroke, heart attack, and blood clots. For adults, a healthy LDL level is less than 100 mg/dl.
HDL, or high-density lipoprotein, is often referred to as good cholesterol. It helps remove LDL from your bloodstream by carrying it back to the liver, where its broken down for excretion. Thus, HDL helps protect your heart from disease and lowers your risk of stroke. A healthy HDL level for adults is more than 60 mg/dl.
Triglycerides are a type of fat that stores excess energy from the calories you consume. A high level of triglycerides indicates an increased risk of stroke and heart disease. A triglyceride blood test result above 150 mg/dl is considered too high.
Total blood cholesterol
Buying Guide For Best Cholesterol
Maybe your doctor has warned you that your cholesterol is too high. Maybe youre simply concerned about keeping your heart and circulatory system as healthy as possible. In either case, you may have wondered if there are alternatives to cholesterol-lowering prescription drugs. In fact, there are several natural alternatives that have proven effective in some studies.
Youll find a lot of cholesterol-lowering supplements on sale today, and with these products comes a lot of marketing hype. Its hard to know what to believe.
Read Also: Can Peanuts Cause High Cholesterol
A Sneak Peek On Triglycerides
Triglyceride is a type of fat molecule that is present in the blood. After the consumption of food and during the process of digestion, the calories which are not required by the body for the production of energy change into unhealthy triglyceride molecules. These triglycerides accumulate in the adipose cells in the body.
When the level of triglycerides in the blood increases, it results in a condition called hypertriglyceridemia. It is quite common across the globe, with more than three million cases in the United States.