Lowering Your Cholesterol

Simple Methods Of Lowering Your Cholesterol

 

What is Cholesterol?

We all want a healthy heart.

One main key in life is to keep your cholesterol at a minimum.

To put it simple, cholesterol is fat in the blood. As it exists in all cells of the body, it is continuously traveling through the bloodstream. It travels in small sacs called lipoproteins. These packages are made up of lipids on the inside (fat) and proteins on the outside.

Lipoproteins support cholesterol as active transporters, by ensuring that its functions can be met throughout the body. These metabolic reactions include:

 

·      Hormone & Vitamin D Production

·      Enzyme Production for Digestion

·      Production Of Bile

·      Cell Membrane Growth & Support

 

Does my body need more Cholesterol?

Your body does not have to intake excess cholesterol, as your liver produces the amount that is needed to circulate the bloodstream.  If you have a diet that is high in saturated and trans fat, your liver will stimulate by producing more cholesterol that is needed.

 

Dangers Of High Cholesterol

The first danger an individual can experience is that there is no signs or symptoms to tell that somebody has high cholesterol. A regular check up is the best way to determine its status.

Some of the most acute and fatal medical emergencies can be a result of high cholesterol. Too much can build plaque on the coronary arteries, can cause blood pressure to rise and can result in a heart attack or stroke.

 

LDL Cholesterol

LDL Cholesterol, also known as low-density lipoproteins, are said to be the bad cholesterol we consume from the food we eat. These lipoproteins, along with fat and calcium, build the plaque inside our coronary arteries, which eventually breaks off and causes a rupture in the vessels of our heart. 

 

HDL Cholesterol

HDL Cholesterol, also known as high-density lipoproteins, are said to be the good cholesterol as its function actually counteracts the effects of LDL Cholesterol.

This form of cholesterol helps clear the pathways of our coronary arteries and fights against plaque, spacing the lipoproteins in the bloodstream, allowing them to travel freely and more effectively.  

 

Balancing Your Cholesterol

Lowering Your LDL Cholesterol in Your Diet

 

Niacin

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Niacin is works well in both ways. It reduces LDL and triglycerides in the bloodstream, while increasing HDL. It is advised that you consume Niacin in small amounts on a daily basis. Sources include:

 

·      Mushrooms

·      Sunflower Seeds

·      Pork

·      Beef

·      Tuna

·      Chicken

·      Avocado

 

Fiber

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Fiber attracts itself to cholesterol and attaches to lipoproteins. It depletes LDL by 5-6% in each cell. Good sources of fiber include:

 

·      Wholegrain Rice, Pasta and Bread

·      Oatmeal

·      Beans

·      Nuts

·      Fiber Enriched Cereals (Bran)

·      Crunchy Vegetables

·      Green Vegetables

 

Reduce Saturated and Trans Fats

While Niacin is present in Pork, Beef, Liver and other sources of red meat, it is best to eat cleaner sources that contain the vitamin such as chicken, fish and other vegetables, due to the high levels of saturated fat. Cookies, cakes and chips should be kept to an absolute minimum too. Trans fat is worse for stimulating LDL cholesterol in the liver.

 

Raising Your HDL Cholesterol

 

Physical Activity

Exercise is the most efficient way to raise your HDL levels. Aerobic exercise is also essential for burning triglycerides in the blood.  HDL builds slower than LDL, but keeping fit is the fastest way to a healthy heart.

 

A Simple Start If You Have High Blood Cholesterol

Step 1: Start adjusting your diet lightly, stay hydrated.

Change can not be easy and it requires time and patience. The best way to develop habit is small increments at a time.

Don't skip breakfast. When you wake up, make sure that you can eat something that is low in cholesterol and stay hydrated. A perfect breakfast would be oatmeal with skim milk, mixed with a combination of light fruit. Oatmeal helps to lower LDL Cholesterol, and is a very healthy long lasting stable carb. It reduces the temptation to eat badly or too often throughout the day. Add flax seeds and other other high fiber grains that are even tasteless to increase good cholesterol. Drinking plenty of water throughout the day will help you exercise, increasing your HDL levels.

 

Step 2: Start exercising lightly

If somebody has high cholesterol and high blood pressure, it is most likely they need to lose weight under safe guidelines at the beginning.

Don't over exert yourself too much and put excess pressure on your heart.

 

Safe Exercises If You Have High Blood Cholesterol

All the exercises listed below can be included into one workout routine with lengthy rest periods. Each drill is effective in weight loss. Drinking small amounts of water between each exercise is even more important for daily hydration levels.

 

High Incline Walk

Raising and decreasing the incline on a treadmill is a great way to start adjusting to cardiovascular exercise. This is a safe way to control your heart rate and start burning calories. It will also help activate muscles in the legs, core and back for when ready to progress to other exercises.

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Light Biking

Like the treadmill, the bike is another machine that can be utilized under your control at the gym. Changing the resistance in intervals, you can lightly challenge your aerobic capacity and make steady improvements.

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Small Step Ups

Step Ups are very good for functional health. We repeat this movement consistently. Whether its taking the stairs, climbing a wall or going hiking, we are always stepping up. Not only will small steps help you lose weight very quickly, it will help strengthen your legs, lower back and hips. There is more hip activation in different kinds of step ups, which is important for keeping healthy knees, so you can perform the exercise at a later stage itself. Another benefit of step ups is improving your balance. Buy a small stepper for at home if you don't have one in your own exercise room!

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Bench Squats

Bench squats, opposed to a squat, are more safe for anyone who has issues with balance or lower back pain. This exercise is again very good for improving hip and core strength, as well as the prime movers in the legs.

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Light Free Weight Exercises & Machines

It may not be time for holding that plank or performing various isolated core exercises just yet, but while we are losing that weight, you can still keep your upper body strong and progress easy. Remember, it all burns calories, and building that lean tissue on your body will always increase weight loss no matter where its situated. Choosing 3lbs or 5lbs dumbbells, you can test how many repetitions you can do in seated position.

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Step 3: Reduce Substances That Promote LDL Cholesterol

 

Smoking

Smoking will affect your aerobic capacity significantly. It depletes HDL Cholesterol but also affects its improve it through cardiovascular exercise. After the succession of quitting smoking, you will see dramatic results within a year. Huge increase in stamina and a significant reduction in heart rate and blood pressure.

 

Addition Of Sugar & Salt

There is enough sugar and sodium in the food we eat, especially anything that comes out of a packet or a can. Natural sugars from fruit and stable carbs you eat is enough. As for sodium, there is no need to use the salt shaker at the table at any time. A reduction in both helps the blood flow better in high density.

 

Anabolic Substances

If you are looking to increase you athletic performance, anabolic drugs or substances will lower your HDL levels and increases your LDL levels after use rapidly. Best to stay away.


Ben Walker is a Your House Fitness personal trainer based in Toronto, ON. To view his profile click on his name.