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.
- 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.
- 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.
- 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.
- 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.
- 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.
- 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.
- 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.