How to lower your cholesterol level

Have you been diagnosed with high cholesterol? If so, then there may be a few things you can do to help get your cholesterol back to the appropriate levels again. First, let us take a closer look at just what cholesterol is. Cholesterol is found in the blood circulation of our bodies. We get our cholesterol from dietary intake and liver production. The dietary cholesterol comes mostly from eating meat and dairy products. After we eat these foods, the cholesterol is absorbed through our intestines into our blood and it is then packaged inside a coating of protein. This complex is called a chylomicron. After a meal, the liver removes chylomicrons from the blood circulation, and in between our meals, our liver manufactures and secretes cholesterol back into the blood circulation.

There are two different types of cholesterols. One is good for us while the other is bad for us. The LDL cholesterol is the bad type of cholesterol because when you have too much of it you have an increased risk of coronary heart disease. The LDL forms a hard thick plaque on your artery walls which can lead to a heart attack. HDL cholesterol is the good cholesterol because it actually extracts cholesterol from the artery walls and sends them to the liver to be disposed of.

When you are told that you have high cholesterol that means that you have too much of the LDL cholesterol and that can be very dangerous. However, there are some things that you can do to help lower these levels.

First and most importantly, you must watch what you eat. Since we get most of our cholesterol from eating foods derived from animals, it only makes since to stop eating so much meat, eggs and dairy. There are plenty of other fantastic foods out there to try. If you are worried about getting enough protein, you can start slowly supplementing other sources into your diet, such as beans or products made from soy. Make sure you are eating plenty of fruits and vegetables. Eat at least 4-5 servings of fruit and vegetables a day. Be sure to eat plenty of fiber and switch to foods that are made of whole grains. Stay away from junk foods, butters and oils that are high in saturated fats. Garlic and onion are both good foods to eat for high cholesterol. You can even have the occasional glass of wine or beer since it has been shown to help lower high cholesterol levels. Remember, all alcohol should be drunk in moderation since there are more negative effects associated with excessive drinking.

Secondly, get moving. Exercise is a great way to improve your cholesterol. You may not be used to a lot of exercise but you can start slow if you need to. A lot of people start out with a light weight aerobic exercise a few days a week to get started. This could be as simple as taking a brisk walk around your neighborhood to get you headed down the right path. If you exercise and start eating right you will lose any excess weight that you are carrying and that will greatly reduce your chances of having high cholesterol.

With some simple lifestyle changes, you can start lowering your cholesterol levels today. For most people these changes can happen in a matter of a few weeks or months. For those that already live a healthy lifestyle and still have problems with high cholesterol, your doctor may prescribe some medications for helping you balance out your cholesterol levels. Some people are just prone to higher levels no matter what they do, but more often than not, it has to do with making some changes right in your own home.


Last updated on Feb 14th, 2009 and filed under How-to Guide. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

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