Cut Back On Added Sugar
A sugary diet can cause your liver to make more LDL cholesterol while lowering your HDL levels. Excess sugar can also raise your triglycerides and inhibit an enzyme that breaks them down. To prevent this, replace sugary fare with naturally-sweet alternatives. Instead of a bowl of candy, for example, have unsweetened applesauce or a baked pear. When you do indulge in high-sugar treats, stick to modest portions.
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.
How To Lower Cholesterol The Healthy Way
From a dietary perspective, if you wish to lower your cholesterol, then it is always better to avoid all kinds of saturated fat products, foods with high cholesterol in them, and healthy eating in general.
A low-fat diet is the best for beginners. Along with this, lifestyle changes should also be incorporated into your daily life if you wish to see a difference aka improve your cholesterol.
Healthy eating options and some healthy lifestyle changes include:
- Low-fat milk and other low-fat dairy products
- Little to moderate alcohol consumption
- Partially hydrogenated oils
- Foods with more soluble fiber. Soluble fiber is important for adding the required amount of healthy fats to your body. They reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease and also make sure that you are getting all the nutrition that is needed for a healthy and balanced diet!
The main purpose of these healthy lifestyle changes is to make sure that only the good HDL cholesterol gets added to your diet. HDL cholesterol keeps your heart and health in the optimal range and makes sure that all these lifestyle changes are well paid for!
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Limit Your Alcohol Intake
Alcohol can increase your levels of triglycerides. Along with LDL cholesterol, high levels of triglycerides raise your risk of heart disease.
Excess alcohol consumption also increases blood pressure and can lead to obesity both additional risk factors for heart disease.
To reduce the risk of heart disease and other risks from alcohol, limit your intake to no more than 10 standard drinks per week and no more than 4 drinks per day.
/13high Cholesterol And Heart Disease
High cholesterol can develop fatty deposits in your blood vessels. If no precaution is taken, these deposits will eventually grow and make it difficult for enough blood to flow through your arteries. This pressurises your heart to pump harder, and over time, can lead to heart diseases.
A person is at high risk for developing heart disease if their total cholesterol level is higher than 240 mg/dL, LDL levels are higher than 160 mg/dL, and the HDL level is below 40 mg/dL.
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High Ldl Cholesterol Diagnosis
A blood test can check your LDL, HDL, and total cholesterol levels. It also measures triglycerides, a type of fat that stores extra energy from your diet. High triglyceride levels can make you more likely to have heart problems.
Lower numbers are better when it comes to LDL cholesterol test results. The general guidelines for adults in the United States are:
- Less than 100 milligrams per deciliter : Optimal
- 100-129 mg/dL: Near or above optimal
- 130-159 mg/dL: Borderline high
- 160-189 mg/dL: High
- 190 mg/dL and above: Very high
If you have a condition like heart disease or diabetes, your doctor might recommend an LDL target of 70 mg/dL or below.
Misconception: If The Nutrition Facts Label Shows No Cholesterol The Food Is Heart Healthy
A foods Nutrition Facts label can be helpful for choosing heart-healthy foods, if you know what to look for.
Many foods marketed as low-cholesterol have high levels of saturated or trans fats, both of which raise blood cholesterol.
Look for how much saturated fat, trans fat and total calories are in a serving. Ingredients are listed in descending order of use, so choose products where fats and oils are near the end of the ingredients list.
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Foods To Avoid When Cholesterol Is High
Most foods to avoid contain excess saturated fats which raise cholesterol.
They can be found everywhere and especially in dairy products.
So you need to choose low-fat milk, yogurt, and cheese.
These saturated fats are also present in beef and pork as well as in chicken skin.
Prefer lean meats such as turkey, chicken , and fish.
You should also limit your consumption of fried foods and prepared foods.
Trans fatty acids are also harmful fats.
Its basically an artificial fat found in donuts, frozen pizza, margarine, etc.
It is recommended to limit the consumption of added sugars by slowing down cakes, cookies, ice cream, sugary drinks.
Get Your Fill Of Fiber
Ideally, you should be getting 25 to 35 grams of fiber a day, says Dr. Cho. Fiber binds to cholesterol and eliminates it from your body. To increase your fiber intake, eat more whole grains, legumes like beans and lentils, vegetables and fruits. You should be getting a good mix of both soluble fibers, which are more beneficial for cholesterol, and insoluble fibers, which are better for your gut health. Getting enough fiber also reduces your risk of diseases, prevents constipation and keeps you feeling full for longer.
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Plant Stanols And Sterols
Sterols and stanols are plant compounds which have a similar size and shape to cholesterol. They work by blocking the absorption of cholesterol in the gut, so reducing the amount of cholesterol getting into the bloodstream, explains Garton.
Tiny amounts of sterols and stanols can be found in a range of plant-based foods but eating fortified foods like milk, yoghurt drinks and spreads can help you to eat enough.
Eating 1.5 to 2.4 g of plant sterol or stanols daily can reduce blood cholesterol by between 7 and 10% over the course of two to three weeks, says Garton. Its important to note that they need to be eaten on a regular basis and as part of a meal because they only work by mixing with the food you have eaten.
Eliminate Or Reduce Bad Fats In Your Diet
A diet high in trans fats or saturated fats, known as bad fats, can increase cholesterol levels. Lowering your intake of unhealthy dietary fats is central to lowering your cholesterol.
Mostly found in full-fat dairy products, fried foods, and red meats, saturated fats are solid at room temperature, and theyre a major contributor to high bad LDL cholesterol levels. Limit saturated fats to less than seven percent of your total daily caloriesfor a 2,000 calorie diet, thats around 16 to 22 grams per day, roughly the equivalent of two slices of bacon.
Also known as partially hydrogenated vegetable oil, trans fat is so bad for heart health that it was banned by the FDA effective January 1, 2021. While trans fat occurs naturally in small amounts in dairy products and red meat, more concerning is that you may still be consuming it in your diet through certain baked goods and processed foods without knowing it. Thats because if a product contains less than 0.5 grams of trans fat per serving, manufacturers can list it as 0 grams on the labelbut they still have to include it on the list of ingredients, where itll be listed as partially hydrogenated vegetable oil.
If you frequently eat several servings per day of certain processed foods, those one-half-grams-or-less of trans fats can add up to serious problems for your heart health. These are some of the food products that may still have a surprising amount of trans fat:
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How To Reduce Cholesterol In 30 Days: Good Cholesterol & Bad Cholesterol: Whats The Real Deal
We all might have often heard these ever-so-popular terms such as good cholesterol, and bad cholesterol during our science lectures or even from many doctors as well.
For all those people who do not understand what these good and bad cholesterol types are and why they are named so, these adjectives are added due to a reason.
It is not true that cholesterol in any form is unhealthy, but rather it is highly dependent on the type of cholesterol that makes it healthy or unhealthy in the long term.
Generally speaking, HDL or high-density cholesterol is considered to be the good cholesterol whereas LDL cholesterol or low-density cholesterol is said to be the bad cholesterol.
The reason for this is simple. HDL cholesterol carries away all the excess cholesterol from your bloodstream to the liver.
Here, this cholesterol gets metabolized before it could get into your arteries and clog them, making you a target for atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease and other heart conditions.
Simply put, the good HDL cholesterol clears the unhealthy or harmful cholesterol from your bloodstream before it gets the chance to get accumulated.
LDL cholesterol, on the other hand, plays a very big role in carrying the cholesterol present in your bloodstream to the arteries or the heart directly.
This could be very dangerous for anyone, but especially for the ones who already have other co-existing conditions to complicate this situation.
Lifestyle Changes To Reduce Your Cholesterol
You can manage high cholesterol through your diet by reducing saturated and trans fats and eating more fruit, vegetables, and whole grains . Choose chicken and fish as your main source of protein, and cut down on sugary foods and sodium.
There are also other lifestyle changes you can make to manage your cholesterol. Because physical activity boosts your HDL cholesterol, aim for at least 30 minutes of moderate activity five days a week. If you quit smoking for a year, your risk of heart disease will be cut in half .
Some supplements might reduce your cholesterol. According to WebMD, whey protein could reduce your LDL, but check the label for any added sugar. Policosanol, which comes from sugar cane, can manage cholesterol, but some supplements sold in the United States extract it from beeswax, which hasn’t been found to affect cholesterol levels. Some herbs such as fenugreek, holy basil, and artichoke leaf extract may have cholesterol-reducing properties.
According to Healthline, sterols and stanols, which are found in most plants, can limit cholesterol absorption. Some foods, such as yogurt and margarine, are fortified with these ingredients.
Start A Healthy Plan And Make A Delicious Recipe
One of the best ways to reduce or prevent high cholesterol is to cut back on the foods that cause it. Those include trans fats, often listed as partially hydrogenated oil on cookie and cracker packages, and saturated fats, found mostly in meat, cheese and butter. To replace those foods, eat more high-fiber plant foods and heart-healthy fats the foods known to lower cholesterol. We list seven of these superfoods below. If overhauling your entire diet sounds too hard, try making just one change per week to make healthy changes that stick.
Week 1: Opt for oats for breakfastOats just might be the perfect way to start your day. They energize you, keep you regular and have more soluble fiber the kind that kicks out bad LDL cholesterol than any other grain. You dont even have to cook them see below for the easiest recipe ever. Other good grain choices are oat bran, barley and whole grains in general.
Week 2: Add an apple a dayApples are high in pectin, another type of soluble fiber that lowers LDL cholesterol. Strawberries, blueberries, grapes and oranges also pack loads of pectin and other nutrients that give them their vibrant colors, so load up.
Week 4: Have a handful of nutsSnacking on a small handful of walnuts, almonds, peanuts, hazelnuts or pistachios every day can lower bad cholesterol by about 5 percent, studies show. The unsaturated fats in nuts are good for your heart too, unlike the saturated or trans fats in salami, cheese and many crackers.
/13what Happens In A Cholesterol Test
Cholesterol levels can be tested by taking some blood from your arm with a needle. This is then sent to a lab to check your cholesterol levels and you should get the result in the next few days.
You may be asked not to eat anything for 12 hours before the test. This may not be necessary, so you can confirm this while booking your appointment.
Another test is the finger-prick test, which is done by pricking your finger and a drop of blood is put on a strip of paper. This is then put into a machine that checks your cholesterol within a few minutes.
This check-up can also help spot early signs of heart disease and diabetes.
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/13eat A Healthy Diet
Its definitely easy to say and hard to follow, but then the hard work is worth it, and in case of high cholesterol – essential. There are plenty of natural foods which can help to reduce your cholesterol levels. Along with these, cut down all processed foods, especially those with too much salt and sugar.
Soluble fiber found in oatmeal, kidney beans, apples, and Brussels sprouts reduces cholesterol absorption in the blood.
Whey protein from dairy products can lower LDL and total cholesterol. Food rich in omega-3 fatty acids, such as salmon, walnuts and flaxseed are also great for healthy heart tissue and blood vessels.
How Do I Know If I Have High Cholesterol
Many Australians don’t know they have high cholesterol, because there are no symptoms. High cholesterol can only be detected through a blood test.
Some people have a condition called familial hypercholesterolaemia where a genetic problem leads to high cholesterol. About one in 500 Australians has this condition and many dont know they have it. If you have a family history of high cholesterol or of heart disease at a young age, ask your doctor about your risk.
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How Do I Lower My Cholesterol Your 5 Top Questions Answered
High cholesterol could be caused by things we can control like lifestyle habits, or things we cant like age and family history. Keeping on top of the things you can control with simple changes can help to lower your risk of heart and circulatory disease. We answer your questions with simple tips to help you start making changes today.
How Can I Lower Cholesterol With Diet
Heart-healthy lifestyle changes include a diet to lower your cholesterol. The DASH eating plan is one example. Another is the Therapeutic Lifestyle Changes diet, which recommends that you
Choose healthier fats.You should limit both total fat and saturated fat. No more than 25 to 35% of your daily calories should come from dietary fats, and less than 7% of your daily calories should come from saturated fat. Depending upon how many calories you eat per day, here are the maximum amounts of fats that you should eat:
|Calories per Day|
|69-97 grams||17 grams|
Saturated fat is a bad fat because it raises your LDL level more than anything else in your diet. It is found in some meats, dairy products, chocolate, baked goods, and deep-fried and processed foods.
Trans fat is another bad fat it can raise your LDL and lower you HDL . Trans fat is mostly in foods made with hydrogenated oils and fats, such as stick margarine, crackers, and french fries.
Instead of these bad fats, try healthier fats, such as lean meat, nuts, and unsaturated oils like canola, olive, and safflower oils.
Limit foods with cholesterol. If you are trying to lower your cholesterol, you should have less than 200 mg a day of cholesterol. Cholesterol is in foods of animal origin, such as liver and other organ meats, egg yolks, shrimp, and whole milk dairy products.
Eat plenty of soluble fiber. Foods high in soluble fiber help prevent your digestive tract from absorbing cholesterol. These foods include:
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When Can I Eat Or Drink Again
As soon as your blood is taken, your fast is over. You might want to bring a snack and a drink with you so you can eat as soon as possible after the test.
American Academy for Clinical Chemistry: Basic Metabolic Panel,Comprehensive Metabolic Panel,GGT,Glucose Tests,Iron Tests,Lipid Profile,Renal Function Panel,Vitamin B12 & Folate.
British National Health Service: Can I Eat and Drink Before Having a Blood Test?
Crystal Moore, MD, PhD, FCAP, anatomical and clinical pathologist, Chesapeake, VA.
National Heart Lung and Blood Institute: What Are Blood Tests?
Nemours Foundation: Blood Test: Comprehensive Metabolic Panel .
Providence Laboratory Services : Fasting Instructions.
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Myth: All Cholesterol Is Bad For You
Fact: Some types of cholesterol are essential for good health. Your body needs cholesterol to perform important jobs, such as making hormones and building cells. Cholesterol travels through the blood on proteins called lipoproteins. Two types of lipoproteins carry cholesterol throughout the body:
- LDL , sometimes called bad cholesterol, makes up most of your bodys cholesterol. High levels of LDL cholesterol raise your risk for heart disease and stroke.
- HDL , or good cholesterol, carries cholesterol back to the liver. The liver then flushes it from the body. High levels of HDL cholesterol can lower your risk for heart disease and stroke.
When your body has too much LDL cholesterol, it can build up in the walls of your blood vessels. This buildup is called plaque. As your blood vessels build up plaque over time, the insides of the vessels narrow. This narrowing can restrict and eventually block blood flow to and from your heart and other organs. When blood flow to the heart is blocked, it can cause angina or a heart attack.