How Cholesterol Moves Around The Body
Cholesterol is a white, insoluble and waxy substance. It is carried around the body by two key transport systems in the blood, which include:
- Low-density lipoprotein cholesterol carries most of the cholesterol that is delivered to cells. It is called the bad cholesterol because when its level in the bloodstream is high, it can clog up your arteries.
- High-density lipoprotein cholesterol is called the good cholesterol, because it helps remove excess cholesterol out of the cells, including cells in the arteries.
Natural Supplements To Lower Cholesterol
Nearly 40% of American adults have high cholesterol. Lowering your cholesterol levels can decrease risks for heart disease, heart attack, and stroke.
This can be accomplished through medications, as well as diet, exercise, and lifestyle changes.
Some patients with high cholesterol also turn to dietary and natural supplements to help.
But do they really work to lower cholesterol levels and, more importantly, how safe are they?
In this article, Ill explain what cholesterol is, and what it means when your levels are high.
Ill then talk about some of the natural supplements that have been tried for lowering cholesterol levels, and discuss whether theyre effective. Ill also outline their potential side effects.
Finally, Ill tell you when you should talk to a doctor about your cholesterol levels, and how K Heath can help.
How Often Should I Have My Cholesterol Tested
Adults should have their blood lipids measured every 5 years, starting at 45 years. Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people should start lipid blood tests at 35, because on average heart and blood vessel disease such as heart attacks and stroke happen 10 to 20 years earlier in Indigenous people.
All Australians in these age groups are eligible for a regular 20-minute heart health check with their doctor. This checks your blood pressure, cholesterol and blood sugar levels. Your doctor can then assess your risk of having a heart attack or stroke in the next 5 years.
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Safe Blood Cholesterol Levels
Health authorities recommend that cholesterol levels should be no higher than 5.5 mmol per litre if there are no other risk factors present. If there are other cardiovascular risk factors such as smoking and high blood pressure or pre-existing cardiovascular disease, then the aim for the LDL levels would be less than 2 mmol/l. Approximately half of all adult Australians have a blood cholesterol level above 5 mmol/l. This makes high blood cholesterol a major health concern in Australia.
Why We Need Vitamin D
Vitamin D helps you absorb calcium and phosphorus from your diet and use these minerals to keep your bones, teeth and muscles strong. This helps prevent falls as you get older.
Vitamin D may have other roles in the bodys immune system and heart health too.A lack of vitamin D can cause bone problems such as rickets in children and muscle weakness and painful or tender bones in adults.
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Supplements That Are Not As Promising
In 2017, the International Lipid Expert Panel reviewed supplements that research had suggested might help in lowering cholesterol. The panel determined that several were not effective at lowering cholesterol and might even be harmful. The committee recommended against using the following supplements as a way to reduce cholesterol²¹:
- Policosanols: These are alcohols from sugarcane wax. They are generally well tolerated, but more research is needed to nail down their true lipid-lowering benefits before they are recommended.
- Silymarin: This is extracted from the seeds of milk thistle. It doesn’t absorb well in the body, and more information about its safety is still needed.
- Conjugated linoleic acid: This is made from the fat and milk of certain animals. It has been shown to negatively affect vascular function.
Remember that the FDA does not study the claims made by supplement manufacturers. It is important to make sure your healthcare team knows about any dietary supplements and medications you are taking.
Vitamin B3 Niacin For Lowering Cholesterol
Niacin works in the liver by affecting the production of blood fats, and it has been well-researched. Several well-designed double-blind, placebo controlled studies have found that niacin can reduce LDL cholesterol by approximately 10 percent and triglycerides by 25 percent while raising HDL cholesterol by 20 percent to 30 percent.
High LDLs lead to atherosclerosis and then cardiovascular disease, warns Nadia Chariff, Health Advisor & Registered Dietitian at Coffeeble. Make no mistake, dietary & lifestyle factors such as high saturated fat intake & lack of exercise definitely play a part! Besides recommending alternative diets & increased activity, I recommend niacin to my patients.
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Preparation Of Vitamins Minerals Trace Elements And Phytosterol
The VMTP preparation investigated in the present study is a commercially available food supplement in several countries in Europe. The individual components and their daily doses of the VMTP preparation were selected by the manufacturer on the basis of their individual preclinical and clinical efficacy and safety data available in the literature taking into consideration the Nutritive Reference Values .
Table 1 Ingredients of the VMTP preparation
Ranking The Best Cholesterol Supplements Of 2021
Cholesterol supplements are designed to keep your cholesterol at a healthy level. They do this using a variety of different methods and ingredients.
If your cholesterol levels are too high, you are at a higher risk for heart attack and stroke, so it is vital to lower them to a healthy level. Generally, this is done through both medication and diet. However, supplements can also play a key role when used correctly.
Here are some of our favorite supplements for lowering cholesterol levels:
This supplement contains 500 mg of niacinamide, which can lower your LDL levels. Plus, it also contains a variety of other expert-chosen ingredients, like red yeast rice and garlic powder.
It also promotes the creation of healthy HDL cholesterol to keep your heart healthy. For these reasons, it is Bodynutritions #1 pick.
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Is Your Ldl Too High
Having high levels of low-density lipoprotein cholesterol significantly increases the risk of cardiovascular disease. Heart disease is the leading cause of death for both men and women in the US. In fact, over 73.5 million Americans have levels of LDL that are too high and are not being treated. While the best heart disease prevention is a healthy lifestyle, some supplements can help lower cholesterol and improve cardiovascular health.
Should I Take Vitamin D If I Have High Cholesterol
According to some research, vitamins D and D2 may help improve cholesterol levels. According to others, there is no effect on low-density lipoprotein cholesterol when it comes to vitamins D and D3. When the skin is exposed to the sun, the human body can makeVitamin D, which is needed for healthy bones and teeth.
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Can Vitamin D Help Lower Cholesterol
Though there have been many studies done on vitamin D and cholesterol, theres not enough evidence to say for certain if vitamin D helps lower cholesterol.
A 2012 study published inArteriosclerosis, Thrombosis, and Vascular Biology found that supplementing with vitamin D did nothing to lower participants cholesterol. In fact, participants experienced an increase in LDL.
However, a study published in2014 found that among a group of postmenopausal women who supplemented with D3 and calcium increased their HDL and lowered their LDL over the course of the study. And a 2016 study of professional rowers found that vitamin D supplements helped reduce the blood cholesterol.
All told, theres not enough evidence to say one way or another if vitamin D helps lower cholesterol. But since its an essential vitamin that your body needs to remain healthy, it cant hurt to make sure you get all the vitamin D you need each day.
Other Ways To Lower Cholesterol
If you have high cholesterol, its important to talk to your doctor. They can help you figure out the best way to lower your cholesterol and improve your overall health.
Treatment for high cholesterol varies, but can include:
- Changing your diet, such as eating more fiber and less saturated fat
- Doing more cardiovascular exercise, like running, walking, swimming, or biking
- Avoiding alcohol
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Lifestyle Changes To Promote Heart Health
One of the top ways to cholesterol and improve heart health is to eat a diet free of trans fats and low in saturated fats. Additionally, people should perform aerobic activity for at least 30 minutes per day 3-5 times per week. These lifestyle changes in conjunction with cholesterol-lowering supplements can add up to considerable improvements in heart health.
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.
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Best Cholesterol Supplements Of 2022
You can depend on our experts to share their product searching experiences with you.
To assist you select the cholesterol supplements brand, we examined all the features and came up with a list of ten possible purchases.
We looked at durability, materials, designs, expert reviews, and customer ratings to find the best-performing cholesterol supplements.
The review includes detailed performance information and recommendations for your goals and budget. Find out which is best for you.
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Modify Your Risk Factors
High cholesterol is usually treated based on total cholesterol, LDL cholesterol, and HDL cholesterol levels, plus the presence of additional risk factors for heart disease. While some cannot be changed, some can:
- Previous heart attack
- Family history of early heart disease
- Age over 45 in men and greater than 55 in women
- 10-year risk of a heart attack greater than 20%
Of these, not smoking is something you take action on. You can also treat your high blood pressure and diabetes to keep them under control.
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What Therapies Does Dr Weil Recommend For High Cholesterol
Dr. Weil recommends making the following lifestyle and dietary changes in order to lower high cholesterol levels:
Foods Fortified With Plant Sterols And Stanols
Plant sterols and stanols are compounds naturally found in small amounts in many plant-based foods, including grains, vegetables, fruits, legumes, nuts, and seeds. They help reduce cholesterol by blocking the absorption of cholesterol into your bloodstream.
Many food manufacturers are adding plant sterols and stanols to their products, ranging from margarine and cheese to orange juice and bread. You can also find plant sterols and stanols in supplement form. When taken at two grams a day, plant sterols or stanols can lower LDL cholesterol levels by 8% to 10%.
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Dosage For Lowering Cholesterol And Triglyceride Levels And Reducing Risk Of A Heart Attack
- Extended-release tablet: The starting dosage is 500 mg taken by mouth once per day at bedtime. After 4 weeks, your doctor may increase your dosage by up to 500 mg. The standard maintenance dosage is 1,0002,000 mg taken once daily at bedtime.
- Oral tablet: The initial dosage is 250 mg taken by mouth once per day following your evening meal. Your doctor may gradually increase your dosage to a maximum of 6 grams per day. The standard dosage is 12 grams taken 23 times per day.
- Extended-release tablet: The starting dosage is 500 mg taken by mouth once per day at bedtime. After 4 weeks, your doctor may increase your childs dosage by up to 500 mg. The standard maintenance dosage is 1,0002,000 mg taken once daily at bedtime.
- Oral tablet: The initial dosage is 250 mg taken by mouth once per day following the evening meal. Your doctor may gradually increase your childs dosage to a maximum of 6 grams per day. The standard dosage is 12 grams taken 23 times per day.
This medication hasnt been studied in children and shouldnt be used in children younger than 16 years.
The kidneys of older adults may not work as well as they used to. This can cause your body to process drugs more slowly. As a result, more of a drug stays in your body for a longer time. This increases your risk of side effects.
The Benefits Of Liposomal Vitamin C
Vitamin C is one of the most widely recognized and used antioxidants in the world. This antioxidant plays a critical role in helping the immune system, joints and arteries heal and function properly. Liposomal vitamin C is a technological breakthrough in nutrient assimilation and offers incredible health benefits.
Much of our physiology is based on the movement of electrons from one compound to another. Unstable molecules that are missing an electron are called free radicals and they are catabolic to the body. These free radicals are formed in a cycle called oxidative stress that creates damage and instability in cells, tissues and organs in the body. Vitamin C is an antioxidant that acts to donate an electron to neutralize free radicals and restore peace and harmony to the body.
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What Is The Best Drink To Lower Cholesterol
Best drinks to improve cholesterol Green 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.
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Vitamin C May Reduce Endothelial Dysfunction
Vitamin C supplementation has been shown to improveendothelial function in both the brachial and coronary arteries in short-term clinical trials. Cardiologists consider endothelial dysfunction to be one of the first steps in the development of atherosclerosis. The measurement of brachial artery flow-mediated dilation is commonly used as a functional biomarker of endothelial function. The values of the flow-mediated dilation have an inverse correlation with the risk of future cardiovascular system events.
What does science have to say about Vitamin C benefits and endothelial function? There was a meta-analysis in 2014 of 44 randomized controlled trials in people with or without chronic diseases that examined the effect of Vitamin C supplementation on endothelial function. These studies measured endothelial function through flow-mediated dilation, blood flow in the forearm, or pulse wave analysis.
Short-term Vitamin C supplementation was discovered to reduce endothelial dysfunction in people with atherosclerosis, heart failure, or diabetes mellitus, which is a chronic metabolic disease that comes from the bodys inability to produce or respond to insulin. The effects of Vitamin C supplementation on endothelial function were stronger in people with higher risk of developing cardiovascular disease.
Vitamin C also reduced endothelial dysfunction in healthy patients who had the condition experimentally induced.
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Good And Bad Cholesterol
Cholesterol is a type of waxy fat that your liver makes or that you absorb from foods. Your body needs it because it is a key building block of your cells. It is also needed to make hormones and some digestive fluids.
In some people, though, the cholesterol levels in the blood become too high. But high cholesterol is a term that needs teasing out.
Not all high cholesterol levels are problematic. It all depends on the composition of your total cholesterol result.
Total cholesterol is the sum of two types of cholesterol, in addition to other lipids:
- Low-density lipoprotein : Known as bad cholesterol, LDL builds up and may cause damage to the lining of blood vessels. This may contribute to atherosclerosis, commonly known as hardening of the arteries, as well as other health issues.
- High-density lipoprotein : This type helps move other cholesterol from the body, lowering the risk of negative health effects it can cause. Because of this, HDL is referred to as good cholesterol.
Its the high levels of low-density lipoprotein that are worrisome. And while you may have a high total cholesterol because of high LDL, its also possible to have a normal total cholesterol and high LDL.
High cholesterol may be diagnosed if:
- LDL cholesterol is over 100 milligrams per deciliter
- HDL cholesterol is under 60 mg/dL
- Total cholesterol is over 200 mg/dL
Whats considered a healthy or concerning result for you may differ from this based on factors like your age and family health history.