LDL in common man’s term is called bad cholesterol. It is true that your body needs cholesterol for many important functions like hormone secretion, liver functioning, and others. However, too much cholesterol can cause serious problems. Cholesterol does not dissolve in water and it is not excreted. It travels along with the blood and excessive amounts of low-density lipoprotein (LDL) can cause damage to blood vessels and clogs arteries. Over time, this can lead to kidney failure, stroke, heart attack, and others. Here are ten natural ways to reduce LDL in your body from health-care providers at Kingsberg Clinic.
Cutting it at source should be your first step. Unlike saturated and unsaturated fats, monounsaturated fats would help to reduce LDL in the body and boost HDL (good cholesterol) in your body. According to research, eating a monounsaturated fat-rich diet can help to increase HDL by 12%. Monounsaturated fat is found in avocado, cashew, olive oil, pecans, almonds, canola oil, and others.
Add omega 3 fatty acid to your diet
Just like monounsaturated fat, polyunsaturated fat can also help to reduce LDL cholesterol levels. According to research, eight weeks of polyunsaturated fat-rich diet in adults can reduce LDL cholesterol levels by 10% and the risk of heart diseases by 20%. Omega 3 fatty acid is an important type of polyunsaturated fat and it is found in high levels in tuna, shellfish, salmon, seeds and others.
Eat a high amount of soluble fiber
Soluble fiber is a natural component in many food items, which cannot be digested by the human body. This helps in the growth of good bacteria in your gut. These bacteria will help in reducing lipoproteins like LDL, VLDL, and others. Just 3 grams of soluble fiber for 12 weeks can reduce LDL by 18%, according to the study. Top sources of soluble fiber are psyllium husk, oats, lentils, whole grains, fruits, and others.
Exercise will keep you fit and reduce the LDL level in your body. It also helps to reduce the oxidation of LDL, thereby reducing the risk of heart diseases. Common exercises to reduce LDL are jumping jacks, dance-based exercise, resistance training, and other aerobic exercises.
Reducing weight by changing lifestyle, diet or other methods is proven to increase the absorptions of cholesterol from the food and reduce the amount of cholesterol produced by the body. This helps to reduce LDL. This is a slow process. Do not expect to reduce considerable weight in just a fortnight. Any method, which guarantees you rapid weight loss is not good for your health.
Smoking can increase the risk of many diseases starting from respiratory problems to cancer. Among those changes that smoking causes on the human body, cholesterol mechanism is an important one. In smokers, the blood is not capable of transporting cholesterol to the liver and thus, it stays back in the bloodstream causing damage to the vessel. This effect is not caused by nicotine but, by tobacco tar.
Moderate alcohol consumption
Drinking is a double-ended sword. A small amount of alcohol at regular intervals can help to increase the HDL level and also considerably reduce the risk of many heart diseases. However, the limit recommended is just one glass for women and two glasses for men. This moderation in alcohol consumption would fasten the process of removing cholesterol from the blood and transfer it to the liver. However, too much alcohol can lead to liver problems and even a risk of addiction.
Use plant cholesterol
Plant sterol, stanol, and others are plant-derived cholesterol, which is known to reduce the intake of cholesterol. The plant-based cholesterol is found in substitutes for butter, vegetable oil, and others. Just one gram of plant base cholesterol per day can reduce LDL level by 20%, according to a study.
Enzymes and supplements
You can find many enzymes and supplements for sale, which can increase soluble fiber in your diet and reduce cholesterol. However, it is important to choose reliable products. Not all products in the market would create the effect, as promised. Top supplements recommended are fish oil, psyllium, Q10, and others. If you have any major disease or organ related conditions, it is best to talk to your doctor before you plan on adding supplements to your diet.
The best way to keep cholesterol in balance is by adapting to a healthier lifestyle. Today’s IT world has crippled everyone in front of computers and smartphones. If you could add a balanced diet and an active lifestyle to your schedule, cholesterol can be kept well in control. In some cases, the body would not produce the required hormones for cholesterol mechanism. In such cases, no amount of lifestyle change or diet supplements would help you in the long run. For better results, you would need hormone or amino-acid treatments and therapies.