How to lower cholesterol?
What is cholesterol?
Your body needs some cholesterol to function well. But if you have too much cholesterol in your blood, it can stick to the walls of your arteries, narrowing or even blocking them. This puts you at risk for coronary artery disease and other heart conditions .
Cholesterol travels through the blood in proteins called lipoproteins. One type, low-density cholesterol , or LDL, is sometimes called “bad” cholesterol. A high LDL level leads to a buildup of plaque in the arteries. High-density cholesterol , or HDL, is sometimes called “good” cholesterol. It transports cholesterol from other parts of the body back to the liver, where it is removed.
There are some steps you can take to lower bad cholesterol (LDL) and raise good cholesterol (HDL). By keeping your cholesterol levels within normal ranges, you can reduce your risk of heart disease.
How to lower LDL (bad) cholesterol and raise HDL (good) cholesterol
LDL, HDL and lower cholesterol: Bad cholesterol is the state in which we produce more cholesterol than necessary. Therefore, we answer the question of how to lower cholesterol.
Cholesterol is a fat-like substance that is found in all cells of the body. The body needs the so-called good cholesterol (HDL) to be able to produce hormones, vitamin D and also substances that help us digest food .
How to lower cholesterol: what are its main causes
Cholesterol is, therefore, a double-edged sword, because it is necessary for our body, but at the same time it is harmful if it is produced in high quantities. In this case you have to lower cholesterol quickly , because it is dangerous. The main causes of this bad cholesterol are:
- Unhealthy eating habits, such as eating a lot of saturated fats, which are found in some meats, dairy products, chocolate, industrial pastries, processed or fried foods.
- The lack of physical activity, with a lot of sedentary lifestyle and little exercise.
- Smoking,which lowers good cholesterol, especially in women.
There are other causes, which are purely genetic , and which can influence the appearance of bad cholesterol. They are the following:
- Age– Cholesterol levels tend to rise as you get older. Although less common, young people, including children and adolescents, can also have high cholesterol.
- Family history: High cholesterol can come from a family history.
- Race: Certain races may be at higher risk for high cholesterol. For example, African Americans tend to have higher levels of cholesterol and bad than whites.
- Weight: Being overweight or obese raises your cholesterol level
What are the treatments for high cholesterol?
How can I lower cholesterol with diet?
- cholesterol how to lower with diet
Heart-healthy lifestyle changes include a cholesterol-lowering diet. The DASH eating plan is an example. Another is the therapeutic lifestyle changes diet. These are the recommendations:
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 fat , and less than 7% of your daily calories should come from saturated fat. Depending on the number of calories you eat each day, these are the maximum amounts of fat you should eat:
|daily calories||full fat||Saturated fat|
|1,500||42-58 grams||10 grams|
|2,000||56-78 grams||13 grams|
|2,500||69-97 grams||17 grams|
Cholesterol how to lower with diet?
- How to lower cholesterol?
Saturated fat is a bad fat because it raises your bad cholesterol (LDL) level more than anything else in your diet. It is found in some meats, dairy products, chocolate, baked goods, and processed and fried foods.
Trans fat is another bad fat. It can raise your bad cholesterol and lower your good (HDL) cholesterol. Trans fat is found primarily in foods made with hydrogenated fats and oils, such as stick margarine, crackers, and potato chips.
Instead of these harmful fats, try healthier fats, such as lean meats, nuts, and unsaturated oils like canola, olive, and safflower oils.
Limit foods with cholesterol . If you are trying to lower your cholesterol, you should consume less than 200 mg per day. Cholesterol is found in animal foods such as liver and other organ meats, egg yolks, shrimp, and whole milk dairy products.
Eat plenty of soluble fiber . Foods rich in soluble fiber help prevent the digestive tract from absorbing cholesterol. These foods include:
- Whole grain cereals such as oats and oat bran
- Fruits like apples, bananas, oranges, pears, and plums
- Legumes such as kidney beans, lentils, chickpeas, black beans, and broad beans
Eat lots of fruits and vegetables . A diet rich in fruits and vegetables can increase important cholesterol-lowering substances in your diet. These substances, called plant stanols or sterols, function like soluble fiber.
Eat fish rich in omega-3 fatty acids . These acids will not lower your bad cholesterol (LDL) level, but they can help raise your good cholesterol (HDL) level. These fats can also protect your heart from blood clots and inflammation and reduce your risk of heart attack. Good sources of omega-3 fatty acids include salmon, tuna (canned or fresh), and mackerel. Try to eat these fish twice a week.
Limit salt . You should try to limit the amount of sodium (salt) you eat to no more than 2,300 milligrams (about a teaspoon of salt) per day. That includes all the salt you eat, whether it was added in cooking or at the table, or is already present in food products. Limiting salt won’t lower cholesterol, but it may lower your risk of heart disease by helping to lower your blood pressure . You can reduce salt by choosing low-salt and “no-salt-added” foods, as well as choosing seasonings at the table or when cooking over salt.
Limit alcohol . Alcohol adds extra calories, which can lead to weight gain. Being overweight can raise your bad cholesterol level and lower your good cholesterol level. Too much alcohol can also increase your risk of heart disease, because it can raise your blood pressure and triglyceride level .
How to lower cholesterol naturally?
- How to lower cholesterol naturally?
To lower bad cholesterol naturally, herbal medicine can help, as part of a balanced diet of course!
- Psyllium . _ Rich in soluble fiber, psyllium will help reduce the intestinal absorption of cholesterol. Take a spoon in a glass of water.
- Chromium. Particularly recommended for people who do not necessarily eat fat, but who have a weakness for sweets. Chromium , which can be taken in the form of ampoules, will help regulate blood sugar and reduce bad cholesterol levels.
- Oliver’s bud macerate. This product from gemmotherapy , will work both on the reduction of bad cholesterol and will lower blood pressure. To take as a cure, a few drops under the tongue diluted in a glass of water.
- Dandelion . _ This plant, which is found in the form of capsules or infusions, is rich in vitamins and minerals, and will act on the cholesterol level in the blood.
Lower cholesterol: learn to manage stress and practice physical activity
“You can have an impeccable lifestyle, and still have bad cholesterol. In this case, we will try to contain it, by working on stress management, which can be a factor in the production of bad cholesterol…” , says Emilie Kapps.
To learn how to manage stress , we can use many methods and nudges available to us. It’s up to you to find what suits you:
If you already practice physical activity, perhaps you could increase the number of sessions per week (3 to 4 times a week can help to significantly reduce the level of bad cholesterol and on the contrary, to increase the level of good cholesterol. ). Also, opt for cardio sports (running, brisk walking , elliptical, Hiit , Tabata , swimming, etc.) to activate blood and lymphatic circulation and thus stimulate the cardiovascular sphere.
Which fruits to lower cholesterol?
Even if fruits contain sugar, we are entitled to it, and we should even put it on the menu daily, according to Émilie Kapps, who identifies three fruits to favor:
What foods lower bad cholesterol?
“To lower the level of bad cholesterol, it is the general lifestyle that must be modified to effectively protect your health. But the first reflex to have is of course to look at the side of food. ” , explains Emilie Kapps.
Foods to avoid
Some foods should be limited or even almost eliminated in people who have high bad cholesterol levels. Alcohol , saturated fats, sweet products , fried products, or even breaded products should be avoided.
- Best foods for lower cholesterol
For fish, we will preferably turn to fatty fish (salmon, mackerel, sardines, etc.), to take advantage of their richness in omega-3 , which will help reduce bad cholesterol, while increasing good cholesterol. , as Émilie Kapps points out.
To fill up on omega-3, 6 and 9, which are excellent for cardiovascular health, we take inspiration from the Cretan diet , also called the Mediterranean diet , and regularly consume the following foods:
- Oily fruits (almonds, walnuts, etc.)
- From the lawyer
- Olive oil, canola oil or sunflower oil
- green vegetables
As for eggs, which are sometimes controversial when talking about cholesterol, there is no reason to completely remove them from our diet.
“Everything is a question of quantity, it is never good to be in excess whatever the food. You can absolutely eat eggs about once a week , which contain interesting essential amino acids! ” , recommends the naturopath.
Finally, if you consume cereals, or cereal products, always choose them, complete or semi-complete, to benefit from the fibers they contain: wholemeal bread, wholemeal rice, etc.
Lowering cholesterol: grandmother’s methods
Two so-called “cholesterolemic” fruit juices could help reduce the level of bad cholesterol in the blood, as Émilie Kapps points out:
- pear juice
- Apple juice (take a glass on an empty stomach in the morning, to promote satiety as a bonus)
Lower cholesterol: Be careful, to take advantage of their benefits, these juices must be consumed organic, without added sugar, and ideally prepared at home with fruits from organic farming and a centrifuge!
The recipe for cholesterol-lowering juice
- 200 grams of carrots
- The juice of a squeezed lemon
- A few herbs
Juice the carrots, add the freshly squeezed lemon juice , and add some herbs, and it’s ready! Drink a glass of this mixture daily.
Good to know: these home remedies and herbal preparations can help reduce bad cholesterol levels in the blood and increase “good” cholesterol levels, and are effective in prevention, but do not exempt a medical consultation with a specialist such as a cardiologist , or with your attending physician. If in doubt, do not hesitate to consult for appropriate care.
How to lower cholesterol naturally: the best treatments and tips
The best diets to lower cholesterol are those free of saturated fats, and rich in healthier fats. The maximum of healthy fats that can be consumed per day would be around 35% of the total daily caloric diet. Lean poultry, and some white beef, are the best for the consumption of healthy fats. We must flee from processed foods , pastries, baked or fried, and instead of consuming chips snacks, we can take nuts and dried fruits between meals.
Dairy foods have cholesterol, so we must reduce their consumption, and in any case drink skimmed milk and yogurt. On the other hand, fiber is essential to lower cholesterol , since it helps intestinal transit, since it is not absorbed by our body. Oats and bran are the most suitable soluble fiber foods. Fruits, vegetables and legumes are also essential for a special diet to lower cholesterol. Apples, bananas, oranges and plums, consumed daily, will help a lot to eliminate bad cholesterol, while black or white beans, lentils and chickpeas should be part of our regular diet.
In any case, a healthy diet, especially indicated to combat high cholesterol, should always be a diet rich in fruits and vegetables of any kind. In addition, fish rich in omega 3 fatty acids help raise the level of good cholesterol in the blood, and have extensive cardiovascular benefits, thus protecting the heart. Salmon, mackerel and tuna , both canned and fresh, are perfect for a diet that helps lower high cholesterol levels.
Other dietary tips and tricks to lower high cholesterol
As in practically all healthy diets , to lower high cholesterol naturally consists of giving up, if possible, an excessively sedentary life, and doing some kind of gentle exercise , even aerobic type, on a daily basis. It all depends on our availability of time, but walking fast, cycling, swimming or running are very healthy exercises that help the heart pump properly and lower high cholesterol levels.
Also, any diet should limit the amount of salt as much as possible . We should not exceed a teaspoon of salt per day to season our food. In case the food is bland, we can always resort to other types of condiments such as lemon, pepper or some sauce. Low-salt diets help reduce blood pressure , we have already indicated how to lower hypertension with home remedies , which is also associated with high cholesterol.
Other measures that we can take to lower cholesterol at home is to reduce alcohol consumption. In addition to the fact that alcohol adds extra calories to our diet that can lead to rapid weight gain, alcohol lowers the level of good cholesterol.
One of the causes of high cholesterol levels is being overweight , also closely linked to heart disease. Therefore, limiting or completely eliminating alcohol consumption is good for our health . In any case, we must try not to exceed two low-proof alcoholic drinks for men, and one low-proof alcoholic drink for women.
The best way to know how you are eating is to buy fresh food, and whenever you buy packaged food, the ideal is to read the labels to see how much salt or sugar they contain. This is all about lower cholesterol.