Are you suffering from high cholesterol levels?
If so, then you’re in the right place.
While that first diagnosis of high cholesterol can be worrying, try not to be too concerned—there’s actually a lot you can do to help get you healthy again.
Your doctor might already have recommended medication to help get your cholesterol back to a healthy level.
While you should always listen to medical advice and go with what they recommend (especially if you’ve already got really high cholesterol levels), some people find they’d rather try and fix things naturally before relying on medication.
If you’re one of them, then keep reading.
In this article we’re going to drill down on a few great tips to help reduce cholesterol levels naturally.
High cholesterol can increase your risk of heart disease and lead to heart attacks, but it’s actually much more common than you might think.
While some of these tips can help reduce cholesterol so that you don’t have to turn to medicine, if you’re already on cholesterol medication—they still shouldn’t be ignored.
That’s because many of these healthy cholesterol tips can actually make your medication more effective in fighting your cholesterol levels.
Some of these tips are great even if you haven’t already got elevated cholesterol levels. If you want to get in early and create a healthy lifestyle which prevents cholesterol problems arising, then these tips could help as well.
So, how can you reduce cholesterol and stay healthy naturally? Let’s look at the tips…
1. Eat the right foods and avoid the wrong ones
The different types of fat and how they could affect you
Your diet plays a massive role in your cholesterol levels. These days, people are eating far too many trans fats and other products which might be making your cholesterol higher.
So you can start by trying to cut out trans fats altogether, or wherever possible. But don’t mistake this advice for cutting out all fats – because some of them are actually good for you and could even help keep your cholesterol levels down.
There’s a big difference between trans fats and saturated fats compared to mono fats. You want to avoid the first two, but consume more mono unsaturated fats.
Trans fats have been chemically modified to make them more stable and often solid at room temperature, like in margarine and shortening. These aren’t good for your cholesterol or heart health at all and should be eliminated wherever possible.
You can also find trans fats in loads more products like cookies, so you need to start getting into the habit of checking ingredients carefully.
Saturated fats don’t need to be completely eliminated, but should be reduced where possible. This could help reduce your cholesterol levels dramatically. You can find saturated fats in things like red meat and dairy.
One type of fat you shouldn’t be trying to reduce is monounsaturated fat. This can be found in things like canola oil, avocados and tree nuts (like pecans and walnuts). It’s actually been shown to reduce cholesterol levels.
Eat foods high in Omega-3 fatty acids
The fatty acids found in many types of fish have been found to promote good heart health, so eat more of them. Try eating more fish like salmon and herring, as well as nuts like walnuts and flaxseeds.
Increase your fiber intake
Soluble fiber can help your body fight against cholesterol and absorb less into your bloodstream (lowering cholesterol levels). You can find soluble fiber in things like apples, pears and kidney beans.
Recommended foods to consume:
- Nuts – nuts like walnuts and more can be high in both mono fats and Omega-3 fatty acids.
- Whey Protein – has been shown to lower cholesterol and blood pressure.
2. Quit smoking
If you don’t already know how bad smoking is for you, where have you been? Not only is it bad for your lungs, it’s bad for your heart.
You should know that there are countless negatives associated with smoking, but you might not be aware that quitting could actually reduce your cholesterol levels. Not only is smoking bad for your health—it’s expensive, too. Quit smoking, today.
3. Increase your physical activity
As you’ll see in a minute, losing weight can help massively in fighting your cholesterol levels, but that’s not the only reason why exercise is a good idea.
It’s a win-win solution because increased aerobic and resistance activity has been shown to lower cholesterol levels by itself, even before you take weight levels into account. Elevating your heart rate for a period of time can have a number of benefits to your overall heart health (as long as you’re careful).
You should try and increase your physical activity every day, and get your heart pumping faster when possible. Remember to consult your doctor first if you’ve got heart issues.
You can start by simply walking a bit more each day, before increasing activity levels when you’re ready. If you can switch the commute to walk to work each day, that’s a great place to start.
4. Lose Unhealthy Body fat
Extra weight is associated with higher cholesterol. Try incorporating some of the healthy foods we’ve already looked at a start eliminating unhealthy ones. Exercise more, and start shifting those pounds.
Your weight affects how your body absorbs and produces cholesterol, so get in shape to lower those levels.
5. Consume more Spirulina
There’s a new superfood on the block that you might not have heard of.
It’s called spirulina and it has a ton of different health benefits associated with it—including reducing cholesterol.
What is spirulina?
Spirulina is an algae.
It’s a bit like seaweed but grows in rivers, lakes and other freshwater environments.
It’s extremely nutrient rich and therefore has loads of different health benefits associated with it.
It can also be consumed a number of different ways, including in smoothies and other recipes plans.
Can spirulina really reduce your cholesterol?
Yes…. Taking spirulina regularly has been shown as a great way to naturally reduce cholesterol.
You can find out more here.
What other health benefits are associated with spirulina?
The health benefits of spirulina don’t stop at reducing your cholesterol. It’s rich in may different nutrients, vitamins and anti-oxidants.
That means spirulina can help regenerate cells as well as reducing the risk of diabetes.
Other health benefits associated with spirulina include reducing blood pressure and reducing the symptoms of rhinitis.
It could also be effective against anemia, and could even improve muscle strength.
That’s why it’s growing in popularity as a health food and supplement every day.
How to take spirulina:
Spirulina can be taken in supplement form if you don’t like the taste, but it’s also great in powder form.
If you’re wondering how to drink spirulina powder—it’s actually great in smoothies.
The benefits of spirulina powder in smoothies are the same as those if you take it as a supplement, but you can also include other ingredients to create a superfood smoothie.