Tactics To Reduce Cholesterol Quickly
For most of us, there’s really no need to pack our medicine cabinets with pills to reduce cholesterol levels. Natural, lifestyle-based strategies have proven extraordinarily effective in reducing cholesterol quickly and permanently.
Get the top 5 food and fitness tips recommended by the doctors, dietitians, exercise experts, and other faculty at the Pritikin Longevity Center. Pritikin has been helping people lower cholesterol levels since 1975.
Did you know that for every 10% drop in your cholesterol level, your heart attack risk drops by 20% to 30%? Theres more good news: Most of us can reduce cholesterol quickly, and without the need for medications. Simple lifestyle strategies can be very powerful.
Thats what several studies on thousands following the Pritikin Program of diet and exercise have found. Within three weeks, people were able to lower their cholesterol levels on average 23%, which translates into a 46% to 69% drop in heart attack risk.1
Can You Lower Cholesterol Through Diet Alone
18-Dec-19·6 mins read
You are what you eat – and what you drink, how much exercise you do and your genetics.
“Cholesterol levels are affected by a number of factors, some you can’t do anything about – for example, family history, age, ethnicity and gender – and some you can,” says Lynne Garton, Dietetic Advisor for HEART UK. “An unhealthy diet high in saturated fat, being overweight, drinking too much alcohol and not being physically active can all contribute to raised ‘bad’ cholesterol.”
Focus On Monounsaturated Fats
As opposed to saturated fats, unsaturated fats have at least one double chemical bond that changes the way they are used in the body. Monounsaturated fats have only one double bond.
Although some recommend a low-fat diet for weight loss, a study of 10 men found a 6-week, low-fat diet reduced levels of harmful LDL, but also reduced beneficial HDL .
In contrast, a diet high in monounsaturated fats reduced harmful LDL, but also protected higher levels of healthy HDL.
A study of 24 adults with high blood cholesterol came to the same conclusion, where eating a diet high in monounsaturated fat increased beneficial HDL by 12%, compared to a diet low in saturated fat .
Monounsaturated fats may also reduce the oxidation of lipoproteins, which contributes to clogged arteries. A study of 26 people found that replacing polyunsaturated fats with monounsaturated fats in the diet reduced the oxidation of fats and cholesterol (
Monounsaturated fats like those in olive oil, canola oil, tree nuts and avocados reduce the bad LDL, increase the good HDL and reduce the oxidation that contributes to clogged arteries.
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What Is Hdl Cholesterol Versus Ldl Cholesterol
Cholesterol is important for the body because it helps make the hormones and other substances that help regulate important body functions. HDL cholesterol is good for your heart because it helps lower bad LDL cholesterol in the blood.
HDL removes excess amounts of LDL from cells while also reducing inflammation in the arteries, which may cause atherosclerosis or hardening of artery walls.
On the other hand, LDL Cholesterol clogs up arteries over time by increasing plaque formation with its deposits this leads to high-risk factors such as increased chances of stroke, heart attack, angina, and vascular dementia, among others.
The level of cholesterol in your bloodstream is called blood lipid levels. High levels can lead to coronary disease and strokes if not managed well.
Since HDL has a positive effect on lowering LDL levels, if we have more of this good kind , thats better for us!
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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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.
What Is The Best Drink To Lower Cholesterol
Best drinks to improve cholesterolGreen tea. Green tea contains catechins and other antioxidant compounds that seem to help lower bad LDL and total cholesterol levels. Soy milk. Soy is low in saturated fat. Oat drinks. Tomato juice. Berry smoothies. Drinks containing sterols and stanols. Cocoa drinks. Plant milk smoothies.More items
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Will Stopping Smoking Lower My Cholesterol
If you’re a smoker you might already know you should stop if you have high cholesterol. Smoking increases bad cholesterol and lowers good cholesterol, increasing your risk of heart attacks and stroke.
- If youre struggling to stop smoking, talking to your GP is a great first step, or if youre in England you can call the NHS Stop Smoking Service on 0300 123 1044.
- There are also free services in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.
These services will be able to give you useful advice on how to deal with cravings and gradually stop smoking.
Find out more about what smoking does to your body.
Eat Fibre To Lower Cholesterol
Eating high-fibre food can also help to lower your cholesterol. Fibre helps reduce the amount of cholesterol that is absorbed into the blood stream from your intestine.
- Make sure you get at least five portions of fruit and vegetables a day as these contain fibre along with other nutrients
- Eat plenty of other high fibre foods like pulses oats and seeds.
- Choose more wholegrain foods when you can, such as brown or granary bread over white.
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Three Ways Knorrs Helping People Enjoy More Plants At Mealtimes
Adding plant-based foods to our diet is not just good for our health, its good for the planet. But finding time, recipes or inspiration is not always easy. On World Food Day, here are three fuss-free ways Knorr is helping people eat for good every day.
How can you spot future-fit farming? Look for the bees. Over the last ten years, weve been working with farmers and smallholders, finding ways both to protect biodiversity and to secure our supply chains. Heres why.
What Are The Negative Effects On The Body From High Ldl Cholesterol Levels
There are many illnesses and health concerns that stem from having high total cholesterol levels.
Some health conditions that can be triggered by high cholesterol include:
- Atherosclerosis or hardening of the arteries and vascular dementia, which can lower brain function.
- Increased risk of heart disease and strokes from plaque buildup on artery walls.
- Angina chest pain that is a result of atherosclerosis restricting blood flow to the heart muscle.
- Peripheral Vascular Disease
And that is to name a few.
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What Reduces Cholesterol Quickly
A few changes in your diet can reduce cholesterol and improve your heart health:Reduce saturated fats. Saturated fats, found primarily in red meat and full-fat dairy products, raise your total cholesterol. Eliminate trans fats. Eat foods rich in omega-3 fatty acids. Increase soluble fiber. Add whey protein.
Increase Plant Protein Sources
Introducing variety into the diet may help people manage some risk factors for heart disease.
Many people get their protein mainly from animal sources. However, it may help for them to include plant protein sources in their diet too.
A number of vegetable foods that contain substantial amounts of protein include:
- beans and legumes, such as chickpeas, lentils, and peas
- grains, such as rice, quinoa, and amaranth
- tree nuts, such as almonds and cashews
- seeds, including pumpkin, sunflower, and hemp seeds
Adding plant-based proteins to the diet can help the body meet its protein needs without adding cholesterol.
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Eat More Plant Sources Of Protein
Excellent plant proteins include beans all beans, like lentils, red beans, pinto beans, and soybeans. Rather than raising blood cholesterol levels, as animal sources of protein do, beans actually help lower cholesterol.
Beans also help reduce blood sugar and insulin levels, and may even lower cancer risk.
Eat Mostly Low Sat Fat Foods
Reducing the amount of saturated fat in your diet can do wonders for your cholesterol levels. Aim to mostly eat foods that contain less than 1.5g saturated fat per 100g.
Important note:- Most oily fish, nuts and oils contain more than 1.5g of saturated fat, but these are ok to include in a cholesterol-lowering diet because they contain a higher proportion of healthy unsaturated fats.
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Eat More Soluble Fiber With Whole Grains
One way to lower your LDL Cholesterol is by eating more soluble fiber with whole grains. There can be both good and bad types of dietary fibers-soluble or insoluble.
Good sources for this kind of fiber include Oatmeal, Green peas, lentils, beans, barley, and blackberries!
Insoluble fibers are the opposite because they do not dissolve in water these come from broccoli and cauliflower, which lower blood sugar levels over time like soluble fibers.
Soluble fiber is especially important for lowering LDL cholesterol levels because soluble fibers lower the amount of bad cholesterol that you absorb in your intestines.
Soluble fiber also helps lower blood sugar and insulin levels this is important for those who are diabetic so they can control their disease better with diet changes!
Its best to consume a mix of both types of fiber to get all the benefits needed from them without any drawbacks!
Here are some food sources: Oatmeal, beans, peas, lentils, and barley. These foods contain more than just good vitamins but they will help lower bad cholesterol as well.
Both kinds help lower LDL cholesterol by slowing down digestion to remain exposed to high amounts of bile acids for too long.
Does Lowering Your Cholesterol Protect You From Ever Having A Heart Attack
Not necessarily. Since their arrival in the 1990s in Americans medicine cabinets nationwide, statin drugs have indeed proven very effective for reducing high LDL levels, and they do slow the progression of cholesterol-filled plaques. But sadly, the #1 cause of death in Americans taking statins to lower their elevated LDL levels is still heart attacks, states Kimberly Gomer, MS, RD, LDN, one of the many faculty who teach wellness education and nutrition workshops at the Pritikin Longevity Center.
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Understanding Your Cholesterol Results
The results of a cholesterol test can be as confusing as they are important. Learn the difference between LDL and HDL, and how to lower your cholesterol. What do my cholesterol results mean?
Thats because lowering heart attack risk is not just a matter of lowering cholesterol. There are many other factors that damage artery walls and increase the risk of a heart attack or stroke, including:
- High glucose levels
- High blood pressure
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.
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Low Cholesterol Diet Plan For Beginners
Learn how to lower your high cholesterol and improve your heart health by following this simple 7-day low cholesterol meal plan for beginners.
In this 7-day plan for beginners, we map out a week of healthy meals and snacks that will help lower your cholesterol. To keep it simple, we meal-prep breakfast and lunch so you can grab-and-go plus we focus on simple recipes without lengthy ingredient lists. Bonusyou’ll see several one-pot and sheet-pan dinners which means less time spent on cleanup. To help lower cholesterol, we include plenty of fiberan important nutrient for both gut and heart healthby focusing on fruits and vegetables, whole grains and legumes while limiting cholesterol-raising saturated fat and simple carbohydrates.
See More:High Cholesterol Diet Guidelines
Treatment For High Cholesterol
Making lifestyle changes, especially changing some of the foods you eat, and regular physical activity, are very important to help reduce high LDL cholesterol.
You may also need to take cholesterol-lowering medicines to help manage your cholesterol and reduce your risk of having a heart attack or stroke. Talk to your doctor about finding the most appropriate treatment for you.
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What Is ‘bad’ Cholesterol
Whilst cholesterol is seen as the enemy of a healthy diet, we actually need the fatty substance to stay healthy. “It’s needed to make cell membranes, various hormones, certain vitamins and bile salts which are important for the digestion of fat,” explains Garton.
The problem comes when there are high levels of cholesterol in the blood, increasing the risk of heart disease, stroke and vascular dementia. The risk increases the longer the higher cholesterol is left untreated.
There are actually two main types of cholesterol involved: low-density lipoprotein and high-density lipoprotein .
“LDL is the main carrier of cholesterol in the blood and is often called ‘bad’ cholesterol because too much LDL cholesterol can build up in your arteries and cause narrowing,” says Garton. “HDL is often called ‘good’ as it picks up excess cholesterol from the arteries and takes it back to the liver where it can be removed from the circulation. As well as LDL cholesterol, other non-HDL cholesterol is considered ‘bad’ as it can also contribute to fatty build-up in the arteries.
“The ideal situation is to have low non-HDL cholesterol. It’s also important that your HDL cholesterol does not drop too low.”
Ways To Lower Your Cholesterol In 10 Seconds
The first step in lowering your cholesterol: Know that the word “cholesterol” itself shouldn’t inspire panic. In fact, it’s as natural to our bodies as blood itself we use cholesterol to form cell membranes, create hormones and perform all sorts of important bodily procedures.
We even make it ourselves about 1,000 milligrams of it every day. Some foods contain cholesterol, like egg yolks, meats and whole-milk dairy . But most of it is made by the body. Two types of lipoproteins, molecules that carry cholesterol and other substances through the blood, determine your cholesterol levels:
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Wednesday: Pack A Bean Salad For Lunch
If you customarily choose a mayonnaise-heavy tuna salad or meat sandwich for lunch, substitute a bean salad skipping the mayo, and reap heart-health benefits. Beans, also known as legumes or pulses, are so nutritious that they can substitute for fish or meat and they’re a tasty and easy way to lower cholesterol fast. Beans are as filling as meat, too, thanks to their high fiber content. But while meat is digested quickly, beans take longer and may leave you feeling full longer. When it comes to cholesterol-lowering power, beans cant be beat. An analysis of 10 studies published in February 2011 in the journal Nutrition, Metabolism and Cardiovascular Diseases found that people who ate beans lowered their total cholesterol number by 12 milligrams per deciliter , and their LDL cholesterol by 8 mg/dL.