Cholesterol is a waxy fat like substance that is made in your liver. It is also found in many foods such as dairy, eggs, and meat. A certain amount of cholesterol is important to your body but too much and you are at risk of heart disease and several other health problems. Cholesterol is essential in the body for producing hormones, Vitamin D and the acids that help to digest food. You want to lower the bad cholesterol or LDL because it causes plaque buildup on the walls of your arteries., which will raise your good cholesterol or HDL. HDL is important in eliminating bad LDL from your blood.
There are two main ways to lower cholesterol. The first way to lower your cholesterol is by changing what you eat. You diet helps to determine the types of food that you suggest and these foods could be rich in trans fat and other substances that will raise your cholesterol substantially. Animal foods such as meat, duck, bacon and sausage have heavy amounts of cholesterol, as well as saturated fats which actually raise your cholesterol more than just simply eating cholesterol itself. The American Heart Association the authority on heart conditions recommends that people eat less than three hundred milligrams of cholesterol daily. If you have already been diagnosed with heart disease you should lower the amount of cholesterol you eat daily to less that two-hundred milligrams.
The other main way you can lower your cholesterol is by taking drugs prescribed by a doctor that are specially designed to lower cholesterol. Many people who already have heart disease, diabetes or high risk of heart disease have no choice but to take the drugs prescribed to them by the doctor in order to control their cholesterol levels.
Another huge reason for high cholesterol among people these days is smoking and lack of exercise. Smoking can rot away your teeth, cause you to have lung problems and also will increase your risk of heart disease and other health complications. Smoking lowers the HDL or good cholesterol levels in your body. The good news is that those changes in cholesterol levels can easily be reversed by quitting smoking. Exercise is very important to all functions of the body and even a semi-moderate exercise regimen can really help to control your blood pressure levels. As well as your risk of diabetes and heart disease. A good exercise routine will also help you with losing weight and also make you feel more energized.
If you are concerned about cholesterol levels you should contact your doctor. A simple blood test will determine the levels of LDL and HDL in your body and the doctor can probably help you with simple changes to your lifestyle to drastically help you control your cholesterol levels. Your level of cholesterol levels is determined from birth, but know that you can for sure make these little changes in your lifestyle and see improvement in your health very quickly.
In order to have a healthy body and avoid problems like heart disease, you absolutely must maintain a healthy cholesterol level. Many things can increase your cholesterol to unhealthy levels. Being overweight can increase your cholesterol as well as increase your risk of heart disease. If you can lose weight you can lower your bad cholesterol and also increase your good cholesterol at the same time. Age the amount that you exercise and gender can also play a role in whether or not you are at risk for high cholesterol. Many people are probably not aware that your genes also determine how much cholesterol your body produces.
Stick to a low-cholesterol diet and you will greatly improve your cholesterol. If you cut the bad cholesterol that you consume by twenty percent or more you can improve the health of your heart. Include foods rich in healthy fats like oils, vegetables and fish. A simple way to change your diet to a low cholesterol diet is by replacing the trans fats margarine, butter and polyunsaturated oils that you might typically use with olive oil or canola oil. White vinegar for keeping your pan moist instead of butter doesn’t change the taste of your food,; but is very low in cholesterol. Also using a cholesterol-free egg substitute instead of whole eggs will also help you maintain a healthy diet.
Rather than avoiding anything that has cholesterol in it, it is more important to eat foods that contain good cholesterol. Believe it or not many people are not aware that low fat high-carb diets can actually raise your cholesterol to dangerous levels as well. So in order to maintain a healthy diet avoid foods with high-carbs as well. The liver in body only produces about seventy-five percent of the cholesterol that you need. All the rest of the cholesterol comes from the things that you eat on a daily basis.
As I mentioned before, if you make up the calories that you lose from lowering your cholesterol with foods that contain heavy amounts of carbohydrates and sugar then your metabolism will go into a state of famine. This means that your liver overproduces cholesterol in order to make up the difference. This state will not stop until you start to eat cholesterol again. So basically you can raise your cholesterol to high levels by having a low-cholesterol, high-carbohydrate diet and this can also cause problems for your health.
In the foods that you eat there are two main nutrients that raise your LDL or bad cholesterol levels. The fist one is cholesterol a waxy fat like substance that comes from the animal products that you eat. Duck, meat, Salami, bacon, cheese, and other products also contain high amounts of cholesterol. The other nutrient that will raise your bad cholesterol levels is saturated fats, which raise the LDL levels in your body more than anything else in an average diet. Eating too much of these two nutrients is the main cause of high cholesterol.
You are in luck however because you have found this article and the good news is there are many delicious foods low in cholesterol that can lower your cholesterol significantly. One such food is fish. Fish contains omega-3 fatty acids that reduce the amount of cholesterol in your body. It is recommended that a person eat two servers of fish a week. You can also take fish oil tablets these also contain omega-3′s. Even for people that have already had a heart attacks, eating fish and fish oil tablets has considerably reduced their risk of sudden death. The high levels of omega-3′s in fish also help reduce blood pressure and the risk of developing blood clots.
Another food that is a great source of reducing your cholesterol is nuts. Nuts are rich in polyunsaturated fatty acids. A handful a day of hazelnuts, peanuts, pecans, some pine nuts, pistachio nuts, walnuts and almonds may reduce your risk of heart disease, says the FDA. However nuts are all very high in calories so only a handful is recommended. An easy way to incorporate nuts into your daily diet is to replace the meat cashews or cheese in your salad with a handful of nuts. Also please remember that these instructions about nuts only refer to unsalted nuts, and ones that are not coated in sugar. Try replacing the foods that are high in saturated fats with nuts.
It has been said that “an apple a day keeps the doctor away.” Well when dealing with high cholesterol the same can be said of foods that contain fiber such as bananas, cooked oatmeal and oat bran. Eating Soluble fiber reduces the absorption of cholesterol into your bloodstream which reduces you low density lipoproteins, the bad cholesterol. Into order to lower your LDL you only need to eat about five to ten grams of soluble fiber daily. Apples, bananas, barley, prunes and kidney beans all contain soluble fiber. Fiber is also a great weight loss ingredient.
Foods that contain fiber are very filling which helps to limit the amount of unnecessary snacking a person will do everyday. It has been said that women should get about 25g of fiber daily, while men should consume at least 38g a day. Whole grain foods contain about three times the amount of fiber as regular white bread. Blackberries and canned pumpkin contain upwards of 3g of fiber per serving. Most cereal contains some fiber as well. The cereals that contain the most fiber are raisin bran types.
As you have read today you don’t have to sacrifice delicious food for healthy food in order to lower your cholesterol naturally. The foods I have described are both delicious and healthy and very important in your daily diet. Changing your daily diet just a little bit to incorporate these low-cholesterol foods will make you much healthier and also should allow you to see drastic changes in your cholesterol within about six weeks.
Cholesterol is something that everyone has in their body. Your liver and other areas of your body produce it. However it is important to have the right amount otherwise you could develop heart disease and will also have a higher risk of diabetes. Small changes in your daily diet could save you from having to take medication to keep your cholesterol levels in check. These changes only require that you change the kinds of foods that you eat everyday as well as getting regular exercise.
Fish is one the best things that you can eat when you are trying to lower your cholesterol levels. The omega-3 fatty acids in fish will help immensely in lowering your cholesterol. Nuts and oatmeal, oat bran and most cereals will also help in lowering your cholesterol. Only have a small amount of nuts per day though and make sure that they are unsalted and not covered in sugar. Otherwise you will just be compounding your problems. Oatmeal, oat bran, cereal, apples, bananas and other fruits and vegetables are high in soluble fiber which will really help in lowering your overall levels of cholesterol.
Avoid products that contain a large amount of trans fat and saturated fats. Trans fat foods are absolutely terrible for your body when you are trying to lower your cholesterol levels, because the high amounts of trans fat raise your LDL or bad cholesterol while lowering the HDL or good cholesterol levels in your body. The reason I mentioned low-cholesterol medications above is that if your cholesterol levels get too high, you will have no choice but to take these medications in order to control your skyrocketing cholesterol levels.
The good news is that you can avoid having to take these medications if you can make these simple changes in your daily habits. Many benefits are afforded to you for not having to take cholesterol lowering medications. First of all it is much cheaper to buy healthy foods rather than expensive cholesterol-lowering medications. Another huge benefit is that you won’t have to deal with the side effects that a lot of people can’t deal with which are common with cholesterol-lowering medications. I think the biggest benefit of all is the satisfaction of having lowered your cholesterol naturally and all by yourself. Without the need for expensive medications or operations due to a heart attack or stroke.
Practice these steps in moderation, and make sure to eat a variety of different foods everyday. Take care of yourself and exercise regularly. Exercise is another great tool for lowering your cholesterol as well as your weight at the same time. People who are overweight are at higher risk of heart disease and diabetes as well as other health problems. Excess weight increases the bad cholesterol or LDL in your body thus raising your cholesterol levels. Getting about thirty minutes of exercise should do wonders for your cholesterol levels, because losing weight helps to lower triglycerides and raises the HDL or good cholesterol levels in your body. If you have diabetes poor control of that could also raise cholesterol levels.
Stress plagues all of us every once in a while. Some people have huge amounts of stress. Stress is not good for your body it raises your blood pressure can cause you to get shingles and cause other health problems as well. One of the reason that it is important to relieve yourself of stress is that it controls your habits. Some people under a large amount of stress will indulge themselves in very fatty food in order to cope with the stress. Many other individuals console themselves with other unhealthy things when they are under heavy stress. These habits can have drastic impacts on their cholesterol levels and their health.
So eat healthy, avoid foods with large amounts of fat, exercise regularly and control your stress levels and you should be on your way to a new healthy low cholesterol you.