Proven Natural Remedies for High Cholesterol

cholesterolWhen people have high cholesterol, this means that they run the risk of developing fatty deposits in the blood vessels.  This can lead to insufficient amounts of oxygen-rich blood that is getting to the heart thus, increasing the risk of a heart attack.  Decreased blood flow to the brain also can cause a stroke.

Blood Tests

Since high cholesterol has no symptoms, it is important that your physician measure the amount of cholesterol in your blood.  The blood test will measure three types of cholesterol, they are:

  • LDL – this is considered “bad” cholesterol because it is the type most likely to build up in the artery walls.
  • VLDL containing triglycerides, making the LDL cholesterol proteins larger in size and making the damage to blood vessels worse.
  • HDL – is considered “good” cholesterol as it picks up excess cholesterol and takes it to the liver.

Complications

Having high cholesterol causes a dangerous build up called atherosclerosis on the artery walls.  This is called plaques and reduces the blood flow thru the arteries causing problems such as chest pain; heart attack; and stroke.  Because of these complications, lifestyle changes must be made to reduce cholesterol.

Lifestyle Changes to Reduce Cholesterol

Any excess weight can contribute to high cholesterol so it is important to begin losing weight.  Losing even five to ten pounds can help lower cholesterol levels.  This means doing two things – exercising and changing your diet.

Low cholesterol diet can have an impact on cholesterol levels. You must start choosing healthier fats to cook with such as Monounsaturated fats that are found in peanut, olive and canola oils and eating walnuts, almonds are also a source of healthy fat.

Trans Fats

In any lower cholesterol diet you need to eliminate Trans fats from your diet – these are found in margarines commercially prepared cookies, snack, cakes and crackers.  Trans fats increase your total bad or LDL cholesterol but also lower your good or HDL cholesterol.  So if you have a cholesterol problem, Trans fats must go.  Moreover, do not rely on food labels that say “trans fat-free” because in the U.S. any food containing less that .5 grams of Trans fat a serving, can be marked trans-fat free.  Instead, look for food that contains partially hydrogenated oil as that is trans-fat.

Also, limit dietary cholesterol with a goal of no more than 300 mg a day.  Concentrated sources include egg yolks, organ meats, and whole milk.  Instead, use egg substitutes, lean meat cuts, and skim milk.

Select whole-wheat pasta, whole grains, whole-wheat flour, and rice that is brown.  Other good choices are oat bran and oatmeal.  Eat lots of fruits and vegetables as they contain a lot of dietary fiber. Eat fish that is heart healthy such as cod, tuna, and halibut. Salmon, mackerel, and herring are also rich in omega 3 fatty acids.  Finally drink alcohol only in moderation or not at all.  Learn how cutting out this One Ingredient can lower your cholesterol.

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