Exercise To Lower Cholesterol
Exercise is one of the best ways to lower your cholesterol. It can have a direct impact on your cholesterol levels, but it can also help to improve your heart health by helping you to reach or maintain a healthy weight.
Researchers have found that exercise alone can help to reduce your cholesterol levels. Exercise can stimulate enzymes that remove bad cholesterol out of your blood and into the liver, where it can be broken down and removed from your body. It also affects the proteins that carry cholesterol in your blood. When you exercise, these proteins get bigger, which prevents them from getting into the smaller blood vessels. If the bad cholesterol cant reach these narrow blood vessels then it is less likely to cause blockages.
The effects of exercise are strongest when you are doing more vigorous activities or working out more often, but any amount of exercise will be good for your heart health. It is important to start slowly and build up the amount and intensity of exercise that you do to prevent injuries or putting too much strain on your heart.
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Resistance Exercise Lowers Ldl
Although aerobic exercise remains recommended for lowering LDL cholesterol, research indicates that resistance exercise also effectively lowers LDL levels. A study published in “British Journal of Sports Medicine” looked at the role of resistance exercise and cholesterol levels in two groups of women. After 14 weeks, women who performed 45 minutes of resistance training three days each week significantly reduced LDL cholesterol levels. A similar study published in “Cardiovascular Journal of Africa” compared men after 16 weeks of no exercise, aerobic exercise only or a combination of resistance and aerobic exercise. Both the aerobic and combination group saw similar decreases in LDL cholesterol, indicating that resistance exercise by itself or added to an aerobic workout effectively lowers LDL levels.
How Is High Cholesterol Diagnosed
There are usually no signs or symptoms that you have high cholesterol. There is a blood test to measure your cholesterol level. When and how often you should get this test depends on your age, risk factors, and family history. The general recommendations are:
For people who are age 19 or younger::
- The first test should be between ages 9 to 11
- Children should have the test again every 5 years
- Some children may have this test starting at age 2 if there is a family history of high blood cholesterol, heart attack, or stroke
For people who are age 20 or older::
- Younger adults should have the test every 5 years
- Men ages 45 to 65 and women ages 55 to 65 should have it every 1 to 2 years
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How Can I Lower My Cholesterol By Making Lifestyle Changes
You can lower your cholesterol levels by making lifestyle changes, and through taking medicines if that’s what your doctor advises. Some people will only need to improve their lifestyle and diet to get their cholesterol to a safe level. Others may need to take cholesterol-lowering medicines, as well.
Ask About Cholesterol Medication
Cholesterol medications such as statins may be the fastest way to lower cholesterol for some people usually within 6 to 8 weeks. This allows a person to quickly reduce their heart disease risk while cultivating a healthy lifestyle. During this period, a person can focus on lowering cholesterol over time with lifestyle and dietary changes.
Because high cholesterol is a risk factor for serious heart health issues, the American Heart Association and American College of Cardiology recommend statins for many groups of people with high LDL cholesterol.
If LDL cholesterol does not drop enough with diet and lifestyle changes and statins, a person might need additional medications.
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What Are The Good And Bad Types Of Cholesterol
Low-density lipoprotein is bad cholesterol. The more LDL you have in your blood, the higher your risk of heart disease. High-density lipoprotein is good cholesterol. This type lowers your risk of heart disease.
Triglycerides are another type of fat in your blood. People with diabetes and those who are at risk of diabetes tend to have high triglycerides. When you make changes in your lifestyle to improve your cholesterol levels, you want to lower LDL, raise HDL, and lower triglycerides.
How Long Does It Take Cholesterol To Go Down
People who need to use medications such as statins to lower their cholesterol should see their cholesterol levels fall quickly. These medications may work in a matter of weeks, and they generally work to a larger degree than lifestyle changes.
However, because diet affects the levels of cholesterol in the body, doctors commonly recommend that people make changes to their diet and lifestyle in addition to taking medications.
Making simple changes to the diet and lifestyle can help reduce cholesterol. These changes vary depending on how strictly a person adheres to their diet. Other factors, such as exercise and reaching a moderate body weight, also play a role.
Some dietary changes may cause minor reductions in cholesterol in as little as
Cholesterol is a waxy, fatty substance that the liver produces. In the body, cholesterol plays a roll in cell function and the breakdown of some types of fatty acids. The body can create all the cholesterol it needs.
Regularly eating these foods adds more cholesterol to the body and raises the levels of cholesterol in the blood.
Additionally, some fats and oils may stimulate the liver to make more cholesterol, potentially increasing the levels even more.
Dietary and lifestyle changes and medications can all help lower blood cholesterol levels.
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How Low Should Your Ldl And Non
Numerous studies have found that an LDL level above 100, even in otherwise healthy patients, will lead to the growth of damaging plaques. Research suggests that LDL levels significantly lower than 100 are optimal. For example, one major study involving more than 8,800 European patients found that LDL cholesterol levels of 81 were even better than levels of 104 in preventing death, heart attacks, and other cardiovascular-related problems in people with heart disease. 2
And recently, a six-year study involving 18,000 people with heart disease affirmed that for reducing LDL levels, the lower, the better. The study was reported at the annual meeting of the American Heart Association.3 Half the subjects lowered their LDL, on average, to 69 the other half reduced LDL to 54. Both groups were rewarded with few heart events over the six-year period, but the group with the lower LDL, 54, ended up the winner. It had 6.4% fewer events heart attacks, heart disease deaths, strokes, bypass surgeries, stent procedures, and hospitalizations for severe chest pains than the group with the higher LDL.
For non-HDL, an optimal goal for people with clear evidence of heart disease is less than 80. A good goal for healthy individuals wanting to prevent heart disease is less than 100.
Aerobic Exercise And Hdl
Many studies have focused on the relationship between aerobic exercise and HDL-C, and have found that HDL-C levels are more sensitive to aerobic exercise than both LDL-C and TG. Furthermore, all studies focusing on the effects of exercise on HDL-C seemed to consistently indicate that there was an increase in HDL-C more or less, no matter in human or in rats . However, people usually improve their lifestyles as they do aerobic exercise, which can lead to interference with the results. To avoid this problem, Kodama et al. performed a meta-analysis of 25 randomized controlled trials. People only exercised, that is, without medications or dietary therapy. Still, they found HDL-C increased by 2.53 mg/dL when aerobic exercise was 5.3 MET .
Table 1 Several studies about effects of aerobic exercise on HDL-C, LDL-C and TG in human
The main function of HDL-C is to participant the RCT process. Králová Lesná et al. found that exercise could increase cholesterol efflux by 1.8% after 9 weeks training. Besides RCT, HDL-C possesses other functions such as clear lipid peroxide transport. Välimäki IA et al. and Tiainen et al. found that exercise could increase oxidized HDL and oxHDL/HDL and decrease oxLDL at the same time. So, exercise can affect the HDL-C function including RCT process and lipid peroxide transport clearing. And the function of anti-inflammation or anti-oxidation needs further research.
How To Lower Ldl Cholesterol Levels
When we’re born, our genetic makeup sets a range around which our LDL cholesterol levels will orbit throughout our lives, says Dr. Lloyd-Jones.
Yet while we can’t control this genetic range, we can leverage factors like our diet, lifestyle, medications to keep cholesterol levels at the lowestand healthiestpoint in that predetermined spread.
A Normal Range For Ldl Cholesterol
Dr. Lloyd-Jones says that there are average cholesterol values people can shoot for, but in general, the most optimal range for an individual can vary from one person to the next.
Still, he says that if you’re a healthy adult with no family history of high cholesterol and no personal history of heart disease, good starting points are:
- Total cholesterol: less than 200 milligrams per deciliter of blood
- LDL cholesterol: less than 130 mg/dl
- HDL cholesterol: 50 mg/dl or higher
- Triglycerides: less than 150 mg/dlideally below 100 mg/dl
“But if you have other risk factors, like smoking, high blood pressure, or diabetes, these levels might be too high for you,” he explains. “It’s important to understand the context of your personal situation so that you and your doctor can decide the right numbers for you.”
Managing Cholesterol With Exercise
So, does exercise lower cholesterol? Research shows that exercise and cholesterol are related, but again, the biggest factor in making a dent in triglycerides is being more conscious with food choices.
Make sure your exercise efforts are being complemented by a diet high in fruits, vegetables, lean proteins, and healthy fats to enhance the effects of exercise to lower cholesterol naturally.
Putting Together A Low Cholesterol Diet
When it comes to investing money, experts recommend creating a portfolio of diverse investments instead of putting all your eggs in one basket. The same holds true for eating your way to lower cholesterol. Adding several foods to lower cholesterol in different ways should work better than focusing on one or two.
A largely vegetarian “dietary portfolio of cholesterol-lowering foods” substantially lowers LDL, triglycerides, and blood pressure. The key dietary components are plenty of fruits and vegetables, whole grains instead of highly refined ones, and protein mostly from plants. Add margarine enriched with plant sterols oats, barley, psyllium, okra, and eggplant, all rich in soluble fiber soy protein and whole almonds.
Of course, shifting to a cholesterol-lowering diet takes more attention than popping a daily statin. It means expanding the variety of foods you usually put in your shopping cart and getting used to new textures and flavors. But it’s a “natural” way to lower cholesterol, and it avoids the risk of muscle problems and other side effects that plague some people who take statins.
Just as important, a diet that is heavy on fruits, vegetables, beans, and nuts is good for the body in ways beyond lowering cholesterol. It keeps blood pressure in check. It helps arteries stay flexible and responsive. It’s good for bones and digestive health, for vision and mental health.
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How Can I Lower My Cholesterol
If the lifestyle changes alone do not lower your cholesterol enough, you may also need to take medicines. There are several types of cholesterol-lowering drugs available, including statins. If you take medicines to lower your cholesterol, you still should continue with the lifestyle changes.
Some people with familial hypercholesterolemia may receive a treatment called lipoprotein apheresis. This treatment uses a filtering machine to remove LDL cholesterol from the blood. Then the machine returns the rest of the blood back to the person.
NIH: National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute
What About The Mediterranean Diet
The Mediterranean diet is an eating plan that improves cholesterol and lowers your risk of dying early. A big change for most people is to use olive oil instead of other fats and oils. Other parts of the Mediterranean diet include:
Eating less red meat, dairy products, eggs, and poultry
Eating more fish, tree nuts, vegetables, and whole grains
Drinking wine in moderation.
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What Causes Plaque In Arteries
Plaque forms when cholesterol lodges in the wall of the artery. To fight back, the body sends white blood cells to trap the cholesterol, which then turn into foamy cells that ooze more fat and cause more . That triggers muscle cells in the artery wall to multiply and form a cap over the area. But the soft plaque beneath the cap is dangerous. “For example, if your blood pressure spikes, it puts pressure on the thin wall of the plaque, which can break open, form a clot, and cause a heart attack,” says Dr. Cannon. About three of every four heart attacks occur when plaques rupture.
Larger plaques can block blood flow. But they are typically covered by thick, fibrous caps that can resist breaking apart. These are often treated by inserting a wire mesh tube near the blockage to widen the artery.
Focus On Fruits Vegetables Whole Grains And Beans
Our typical American diet is now abbreviated as SAD by scientists nationwide because its full of foods that do sad things to both hearts and waistlines. Hyperprocessed foods like potato chips and French fries. Sugar-saturated drinks. And fatty, artery-clogging meats and full-fat dairy foods like cheese.
We dont have to become complete vegetarians to get our cholesterol levels into healthy ranges, studies on the Pritikin Program have found, but clearly, the more vegetables, fruits, potatoes, and other naturally-fiber-rich plant foods we eat, the healthier well be.
Plant foods high in soluble fiber are especially beneficial in lowering total and LDL bad cholesterol levels. Good sources include beans , yams, oats , barley, and berries.
For simple tips on bringing more fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and beans into your life, here is a 5-day sample healthy meal plan from the doctors and dietitians at Pritikin Longevity Center.
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Most Any Exercise Will Do If You Do It Often
All of these exercises are helpful for reducing cholesterol and protecting you from cardiovascular disease. You can choose which is best for you based on your overall health, joint health, and lifestyle.
There are other options, as well. If you play tennis or dance regularly, youre likely to be expending about the same energy as someone who walks briskly or runs. The important thing is to get in at least 30 minutes of moderate-intensity exercise daily, with resistance training two times a week. Then add in more throughout your day when you can. Wherever you are, get up and move!
You Can Begin To Reduce Your Bad Ldl Cholesterol Naturally By Making A Few Simple Changes In Your Diet
If your cholesterol is creeping upward, your doctor has probably told you that diet and exercisethe traditional cornerstones of heart healthcould help to bring it down. And if you’d prefer to make just one change at a time to lower your cholesterol naturally, you might want to begin with your diet. A major analysis of several controlled trials involving hundreds of men and women found that dietary changes reduced LDL and total cholesterol while exercise alone had no effect on either.
The people in the studies followed a variety of diets, from Mediterranean to low-fat to low-calorie. However, the most effective diets substituted foods with the power to lower cholesterol for those that boost cholesterol. According to Kathy McManus, director of the Department of Nutrition at Brigham and Women’s Hospital, eating with your LDL in mind doesn’t have to be an exercise in self-deprivation. While you may have to say goodbye to a few snacks and fast foods, you can replace them with others that are equally satisfying. “You don’t have to follow an all-or-nothing approach. It’s really a matter of common sense,” she says. She suggests a few ways to start getting your cholesterol under control and keep it normal.
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How Can I Lower My Cholesterol With Medicines
As well as making lifestyle changes, some people will need to take cholesterol-lowering medicines to reduce their risk of heart and blood vessel disease, known as cardiovascular disease. The medicines most commonly used are called statins.
Your doctor will consider all your risk factors for cardiovascular disease before suggesting medication not just your cholesterol and lipid results. If youve already had a heart attack or stroke, taking statins can substantially lower your risk of having another one.
Statins work by slowing the amount of cholesterol made in your liver. In response, your liver uses the cholesterol already in your blood to make up for the deficit. This lowers the level of LDL cholesterol in your blood.
If statins alone do not lower your cholesterol enough, you may need additional medicines.
Contact your doctor if your medicines are causing any side effects.
Aerobic Exercise And Tg
It is widely reported that exercise can induce lower plasma TG concentrations . However, many studies have shown that sedentary individuals have no change in TG levels after a single exercise session . The reasons for the discrepancies were unclear. It seemed that where there was an exercise with a high energy requirement, there would be more frequent that TG concentrations decreases occur. Actually, TG changes in sedentary subjects did occur regardless of whether the energy consumption is low or moderate . Therefore, the energy consumption may not be the main reason for this distinction. If this is the case, is it the state of the patient before exercise is the key factor? To our disappointment, the TG did not change significantly in non-active subjects with aerobic exercise. But the results of other studies have been very gratifying. The researchers found that when participants had lower baseline levels of TG, there was only a slight decrease in TG after exercise. While, when TG baseline levels were high, there was a significant reduction. Thus, the TG baseline level may be the key factor influencing the effect of exercise on the TG response.
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