7 Habits That Help Lower Your Cholesterol

The moment you get to know that your cholesterol levels are rising, you just want to bring down the numbers. Not knowing where to start, you start getting panicked. Well, here is some pleasant news for you. Did you know you could bring down those rising levels with a few lifestyle changes?

Habits That Help Lower Your Cholesterol

You will have to make some adjustments and give yourself a new and healthy lifestyle. Now you know why elders always told you to follow a healthy diet along with a healthy lifestyle. Also, one of the easiest ways to bring down your cholesterol levels is through lifestyle changes so you must start as early as possible.

7 Habits That Help Lower Your Cholesterol

What lifestyle habits can help you lower cholesterol levels?

Cholesterol is just a fat-like substance that is gained through external factors such as the food items you eat every day. Removing those food items or putting a limit on their usage may help you bring your cholesterol levels down. In addition to a balanced diet, there are a few other things you should be careful about. Here is the list-

Workout

Yes, adding a moderate workout routine to your everyday schedule is a must. Workout routines help in the increase of the good cholesterol levels whereas reducing the levels of bad cholesterol along with triglycerides. You do not need to follow any hefty exercise routine. A moderate routine would work. Also, you must work out for a minimum of half an hour for at least 5 days a week. The key point to focus on here is- you have to focus on the maximum time of your physical activity rather than the type of activities you do. Obesity is one of the reasons for your increased cholesterol levels. Losing that extra weight can help your body get rid of the bad cholesterol and triglycerides.

No smoking

“Smoking is injurious to health”- this one does not need any introduction. Everyone knows that already. Your body needs good cholesterol and smoking lead to a low level of high-density lipoprotein or good cholesterol. This can cause various health issues in your body. We know, it is not going to be easy but give it some time and a lot of effort and it should work out just fine.

Healthy diet

What exactly is a healthy diet? Well, you must add those fruits as well as vegetables that do not have much fat in them. Along with providing you with a new flavor, it will also help you gain the required amount of vitamins, fiber, minerals for your body. You have to ensure that you are including good fats since they do not have trans or saturated fats. You can add items such as avocados, chia seeds, fatty fish, garlic, apples, olive oil, nuts, etc.

Change your cooking styles

The healthiest way to prepare meat or other food is by baking, roasting, or broiling it. Try to get yourself a new pan, non-stick pan specifically, and do not use butter. Instead of butter, you can use nonstick cooking spray or canola, or olive oil. You can also use other healthy cooking oils such as sunflower oil and rice bran oil.

Protein and fiber

Food items such as beans, fish, peas, lentils, tree nuts, etc. are good sources of protein as well as fiber and do not even have fat or cholesterol which makes these the best option for a healthy diet. Other healthy food items that you can add to your diet are almonds, soymilk, tofu, oats, barley, legumes, flax seeds, etc.

Cut off sugar

Sugar works as a white poison. It can increase the levels of triglycerides that lead to various heart issues. You can use other alternatives of sugar such as honey or jaggery. Also, put a limit to the intake of ice creams as well as desserts.

Stress management

Stress is one of the major reasons for heart diseases. Refrain yourself from doing so many things at once as it only leads to a lot of stress. Stress can also be a result of you overthinking and worrying about things you do not have control over. We suggest getting rid of this habit as quickly as you can. Stress can harm your body in several ways, one of them being increased levels of cholesterol. Start doing yoga and meditation to keep your mind happy and healthy.

What are the things to remember about high cholesterol

High cholesterol levels can lead to several risks in your body. Did you know that it does not even show any symptoms so that you come to know about it? Here are a few things you must know about cholesterol levels.

  • There are mostly two types of cholesterol- good cholesterol or bad cholesterol. Yes, even if cholesterol is a kind of fat, your body needs it and creates just enough amount on its own. It’s the things that you eat that lead to bad cholesterol and health issues. You may be at the risk of high cholesterol levels if your diet is full of fried items, fast food, dairy products, egg yolk, etc.
  • Anyone can fall into the trap of high cholesterol levels regardless of their age.  This is why it is advised that people should get themselves checked for cholesterol levels at least once every five years. Men who have crossed the age of 55 and women above the age of 45 should get their cholesterol checked every year.
  • You should get a blood test done in case you have the slightest bit of doubt about increased cholesterol levels. Doctors can also conduct a detailed examination of your previous medical history, family medical history, etc. to understand your condition.
  • Other than the lack of proper diet and exercise, cholesterol can also be caused by age, sex, genes, or race. Women can have high levels of bad cholesterol or low-density lipoprotein after menopause. Your high levels of cholesterol can be a result of your genes or your race.

Top foods to lower your cholesterol

No doubt diet plays an important role in the healthy maintenance of your body. It could be very confusing too when you don’t know where to start. Look no further, we have put together a list of the best items that you can eat to lower your cholesterol levels.

Oatmeal– It contains soluble fiber which reduces the level of bad cholesterol. You can have a minimum of 5 to 10 grams of soluble fiber a day through kidney beans, apples, brussels sprouts, pears, etc. You can have oats in your breakfast and can gain up to 5 grams of fiber.

Oatmeal

Fish- Fish is recommended since it is rich in omega 3 fatty acids. It can reduce the levels of triglycerides. Items that are rich in omega 3 fatty acids are tuna, trout, mackerel, salmon, etc. These have an indirect effect on your cholesterol levels.

Fish

Olive oil- You need to adopt new ways of cooking your food. Start with a shift in your cooking oil. Replace your current oil with olive oil as it does not lead to extra fat gain. Olive oil can also be used with vinegar to prepare yourself a fresh raw salad.

Olive oil

Avocados- Avocados are rich in nutrients and monounsaturated fatty acids. People who are suffering from obesity can add avocado to their diet and reduce the levels of their bad cholesterol.

Avocados

Almonds- According to several experts, almonds along with other nuts have the potential to improve your cholesterol levels. The addition of walnuts to your diet can reduce the risks associated with heart issues. Nuts are rich in calories so too much consumption of these nuts can also create problems for your body.

Almonds

Verdict

If diet and exercise along with other factors can reduce your cholesterol levels, then why not start it as early as possible? Even the healthiest of people can suffer from high cholesterol levels. One of the wisest things that you can do to improve your cholesterol numbers is to put a limit on saturated or trans fat. You must know what to add to your diet and whatnot. You can always have a discussion with your doctor on this matter or talk to a nutritionist. A healthy lifestyle is something that people fail to be consistent over. While we understand it could be a tough job for you, you cannot deny its benefits. Things such as smoking, alcoholism, lack of physical activity, etc. are your enemies if your cholesterol levels are high and should be treated like that only. It would not happen overnight. Take baby steps and be consistent.

FAQ

Q1. What changes can be done to improve cholesterol levels?

You can shift to a healthy diet, do more physical activity, quit smoking, manage your anxiety and stress to improve your cholesterol.

Q2. How do I know if I have high cholesterol levels?

You would not be able to know your cholesterol levels until you get yourself a blood test done since it shows no physical symptoms.

Q3. Should I just go for medications for improving my high cholesterol levels?

The easiest way you could control your cholesterol would be to bring a change in your lifestyle.

Q4. What should I add to my diet?

You can add fruits such as apples, grapes, bananas, vegetables such as beans, legumes, etc. to your diet.

Q5. Can cholesterol be hereditary?

Yes, you may get your high cholesterol levels from your blood.

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