Health

5 Natural Ways to Lower Cholesterol

 

Natural Ways to Lower Cholesterol

Are you curious about what cholesterol entails? According to experts, while cholesterol gets a bad reputation for being a waxy and fat-like substance, it is a substance that human bodies need in order to build healthy cells to function. That said, if the body has too much cholesterol, it can be dangerous and can inhibit the function of the body. 

That said, it is also important to note that not all cholesterol is the same. For example, “bad cholesterol,” or what is otherwise known as low-density lipoprotein (LDL), poses a threat because it can and often does leave plaque in human arteries that can then lead to various outcomes such as heart disease, vascular issues, and atherosclerosis (otherwise known as hardened arteries). 

In cases of high cholesterol, this typically entails having far too much low-density lipoprotein in the body. Statistically, low-density lipoprotein tends to impact one in every three Americans. 

Alternatively, “good cholesterol,” or what is otherwise known as high-density lipoprotein (HDL), can actually be quite beneficial as it helps remove harmful cholesterol from the human bloodstream.

Experts suggest that if you are dealing with problematic cholesterol, it is important to implement lifestyle changes such as taking supplements to lower cholesterol

This is key to ensuring that you are able to maintain this healthy lifestyle adjustment. 

If you are looking for additional steps – natural ones at that – to lower cholesterol, we’ve got five great ways to do so listed below. 

Eat Meats Like Fish and Chicken

According to experts, one great suggestion when looking for natural ways to lower cholesterol is to go easy on red meats and instead consume more lean meat proteins such as fish and chicken as part of your diet. 

Most red meats are quite high in saturated fats. Over time, this can lead to a rise in “bad cholesterol.” 

As an alternative, people should instead opt for healthier alternatives rather than processed meats. Some options include skinless chicken, skinless turkey, and fish. 

Fish, in particular, is an excellent option because it is low in saturated fats and provides a rich option in omega-3 fatty acids. 

As a result, by adding more fish to your diet, you can have a positive impact on your overall heart health by boosting your “good cholesterol” levels. 

Some great fish options include oily fish (as in the case of Atlantic or Pacific salmon, Atlantic mackerel, or tilapia), shellfish (shrimp and crab), freshwater fish (as in the case of lake herring and trout), saltwater whitefish (such as cod and grouper), and tuna types (as in the case of tuna steaks or filets and canned light tuna). 

If, however, you need to feast on red meats such as steak and hamburger, experts suggest eating these meats in moderation and choosing leaner cuts of meat.

More Soluble Fiber

Another great natural way to lower your cholesterol is to consume more soluble fiber – that is, fiber that can dissolve into water – as this can really help with your digestive and cardiovascular health. 

To ensure that this happens, people may want to consume food that is lower in cholesterol.

Experts agree that soluble fiber can help lower “bad cholesterol” in your gut before it gets into your bloodstream. 

Some suggestions for foods that are rich in soluble fiber include oats, whole grain bread, barley, and quinoa, as well as kidney beans, lentils, and chickpeas. 

Additionally, whenever you can, make sure to use fresh ingredients rather than processed materials that are not high in nutritional value.

Low-Fat Milk, Cheese, and Yogurts

Another great way to fight the battle against cholesterol is to make smarter choices when it comes to your dairy. 

The key here is to use low-fat dairy products and to veer away from regular options in terms of your cheese, milk, cream, and yogurt. 

Once you make these changes – that is, moving from full-fat dairy products which contain saturated fat and cholesterol to low or nonfat items – you will immediately help your body build healthier levels of cholesterol in your bloodstream. 

Increase Unsaturated Fats and Fiber

Yet another option for naturally lowering your cholesterol is to increase your unsaturated fats and fiber. Rather than turning to foods that are high in trans and saturated fats (as in the case of chips and microwavable popcorn), opt for foods that have good fats and fiber, such as fruits, vegetables, and raw nuts. 

It is important to remember that you should look for foods that are not highly processed – when in doubt, fresh and raw options are best.

Stay Away from Trans Fat

A final suggestion when considering how to lower your cholesterol naturally is to stay away from trans fat. 

The easiest way to do this is by reading the nutrition labels of your food, which often point out what nutrients your foods offer. 

These labels also indicate whether the food you are choosing has trans fats – also known as “hydrogenated oils”– which you should be avoiding. 

While trans fats help make products last longer – especially as they are being shipped to grocery stores – they also contribute to raising bad cholesterol levels. 

So if you are hoping to reduce bad cholesterol and the risks that it poses, experts suggest avoiding trans fats whenever you can.

 

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