Lifestyle Changes to Improve Your Cholesterol

Before we talk about how to improve your cholesterol you need to know the basics about it in order to make lifestyle changes to improve your cholesterol.

All the cholesterol your body needs is produced by your liver and then you get some more directly from the food you eat including eggs, dairy, meat. 

Sometimes this might add too much cholesterol to your body that uses cholesterol to protect your nerves, make cell tissues and produce certain hormones. A high level of cholesterol in the body can cause negative effects on your health. 

Luckily, there are lifestyle changes to improve your cholesterol.

There are 2 main types of cholesterol:

  • Low-density lipoprotein (LDL)- The bad cholesterol, you want a low level of this type.
  • High-density lipoprotein (HDL- Called good cholesterol, you want the required level of this type.

To improve your cholesterol, you’ll need to lower your LDL and increase your HDL. 

Consider taking these steps to make lifestyle changes to improve your cholesterol.

  1. Maintain Optimum Weight

Being overweight can raise your cholesterol levels so work on yourself to reach your optimum weight as it will help lower your total cholesterol, LDL cholesterol and triglyceride levels.

  1. Eat A Healthy Diet

Eat a rich Mediterranean diet rich in fruits and vegetables as they are naturally low in fat. They are also the best source of fiber, vitamins and minerals for your body. Make sure to pick good fats over bad fats and limit your amount of saturated fats.

  1. Stay Active

An active lifestyle that includes regular exercising helps in raising HDL and lowering LDL. 30 minutes of moderate exercise 4 to 6 times a week should be good enough. 

  1. Adopt Healthier Cooking Methods

Baking, broiling, roasting is healthier cooking ways and also retain the nutrition of the food. Instead of deep-frying try shallow fry or stir fry.

  1. Switch Your Protein Sources

Meat although rich in protein is also high in cholesterol and saturated fats. Fish, beans, nuts, peas, lentils are other good sources of protein, without cholesterol and fats.

  1. Supplements Are Another Good Option 

Sometimes changing your diet enough isn’t that beneficial. Certain supplements including Omega 3, Psyllium Husk, Plant Sterols can help improve and maintain your cholesterol levels.

  1. Quit Smoking

Quitting smoking improves your HDL cholesterol level and you can experience the benefits quickly as your blood pressure and heart rate recovers, your blood circulation and lung function begin to improve and within a year your risk of heart disease becomes half.

There are no symptoms telling you that you could have high cholesterol. Your body may store the extra cholesterol in your arteries and this build-up called plaque can over time make your arteries narrow and even completely block them. It can also lead to the formation of a blood clot that can block the flow of blood resulting in a heart attack. 

Many times, people don’t find out they have high cholesterol until they’ve had one of these life-threatening events or take a blood test. 

Want to learn more about cholesterol? Get answers to your questions about pregnancy or find a holistic practitioner specific to your needs. 

What Is Heartburn and How Can You Prevent Heartburn Naturally?

What Is Heartburn? How Can You Prevent Heartburn Naturally?

Ever get a feeling of burning pain in your chest right after you had a large heavy meal? You tried lying down waiting for the discomfort to pass but it only gets worse. What you experienced is the common condition known as heartburn, but worry not, besides the name, it has nothing to do with the heart and you can prevent heartburn naturally. 

Why does heartburn happen?

When the muscular valve between your stomach and oesophagus loosens, allowing stomach acid to escape into your oesophagus you experience heartburn. Also known as acid reflux or acid indigestion, heartburn gives you a burning feeling that occurs when the content of your stomach rise into your food pipe. Most healthy people experience heartburn at some point in their life and heartburn can be prevented naturally. 

What can trigger heartburn?

Heartburn usually happens after eating 

  • Large meals
  • Fatty and spicy meals
  • Carbonated drinks
  • Citrus foods
  • Coffee
  • Chocolate
  • Peppermint
  • Alcohol

Other factors that can increase your risk of heartburn include

  • Being above a healthy weight
  • Being pregnant
  • Taking certain medications 
  • Feeling stressed
  • Smoking

Managing and prevent heartburn naturally

There are many things you can do to prevent or manage heartburn like:

  • Base daily meals around a variety of fruits, vegetables, wholegrain, lean meat, dairy
  • Eat frequent, smaller meals
  • Eat your last meals a few hours before you hit the bed
  • Use low-fat cooking methods
  • Maintain an optimum weight
  • Quit smoking

Treatments to prevent heartburn naturally

  • Baking Soda: A teaspoon of baking soda neutralizes stomach acid so that even if it comes up, you won’t feel that burning sensation. 
  • Chew Gum: Chewing a piece of gum stimulates the salivary glands, which increases saliva and it helps wash away any acid. 
  • Don’t Lie Down After Eating: It’s best to eat three to four hours before you know you’ll be lying down to allow time for your food to fully digest. 
  • Eat Fruit: Bananas have natural antacid properties that counteract acid reflux. Another great fruit to try is an apple. 
  • Ginger Tea: Ginger tea is great for many stomach ailments, from the common stomachache to nausea to chronic acid reflux. 
  • Mustard: Try taking 1 teaspoon of mustard when you feel about of heartburn coming on, or if you’re already experiencing symptoms.
  • Chamomile Tea: To balance the acidity levels in your stomach, drink a cup of chamomile tea 30 minutes to an hour before bedtime. 

When to seek medical advice?

Mild, infrequent heartburn isn’t a cause of much concern, but if you experience heartburn more than once a week, it’s important to ask the right question to a holistic health expert