If your doctor already told you that you have high levels of cholesterol, then it is high time that you make the necessary changes in your lifestyle. Although your doctor may prescribe you some medicines that will help lower your cholesterol, exhausting all natural means will still prove to be the best way to avoid the risks of heart disease.
Know the bad and the good cholesterol.
The human body also needs a small amount of cholesterol for it to function well. However, because of poor dietary choices people may tend to obtain a lot of saturated fat and cholesterol in their diet. In turn, their levels of bad cholesterol increase. LDL or bad cholesterol can lead to plaque build-up in the arteries that may eventually lead to heart diseases. But, the presence of HDL or good cholesterol will help lower down the levels of bad cholesterol in the blood. Therefore, if you want to lower your bad cholesterol, make wise and informed choices in your daily diet.
Watch out on your portion sizes.
Many people would love to eat foods that are served in large portion sizes. This is one of the reasons why more and more people each day are gaining weight and some are already suffering from the consequences of obesity. One of the ways to control your portion size intake is to check whether the size of the meat or fish being served is the same with your palm. This will make it easier for you to assess whether you are still eating within your daily recommended servings of meat or fish.
Eat more of fruits and vegetables.
Fruits and vegetables are known to be beneficial for people who wanted to lower their cholesterol levels. Eating at least five servings of fruits and vegetables on a daily basis can help make significant improvements in your cholesterol levels. Plant-based foods provide low calories and prevent you from taking in more of unhealthy fats. Not to mention the fact that these plant-based foods will also spare you from the risks of high blood pressure. Eat foods that contain plenty of plant sterols such as brown rice, whole wheat, rice bran, lentils, dried beans, almonds, walnuts, avocados, broccoli, apples, etc.
Do not forget your omega-3 fatty acids.
If you want to have a healthy heart, then make sure to eat fish at least twice a week. Salmon, mackerel, trout, sardines and tuna are good sources of omega-3 fatty acids which are known to be helpful in lowering the levels of triglycerides, LDL cholesterol and prevent plaque build-up in the arteries. It is also important to remember that you must avoid frying the fish or else you will no longer be able to obtain its benefits. Try steaming or have it cooked inside the oven.
Include whole grains in your daily diet.
Whole grains can be your healthy sources of complex carbohydrates and fiber. Fiber not only helps in lowering your cholesterol levels but it will also help you feel full for a longer period of time and prevent the urge of giving in to your food cravings. The more you eat fiber-rich foods, the less likely you will become overweight or obese. If you want to lose those excess pounds and lower your LDL cholesterol, eat more of bran, dried, herbs, flax seeds, almonds, kidney beans, etc.
Nibble on nuts during snack time.
Nuts not only contain fiber but they are also rich in monounsaturated fats that can also help bring down the numbers of your bad cholesterol. These MUFAs will also keep your good cholesterol levels intact. Studies reveal that those people who have the habit of eating at least one ounce of nuts on a daily basis were found to be at low risk of any heart disease. However, remember that nuts are also high in calories, so just eat a handful of it every day. Of course, see to it as well that those nuts you are eating are not coated with chocolate and sugar.
Lowering the levels of your LDL cholesterol is not as easy as 1,2,3. But, making some healthy choices in your daily diet will definitely do more than just lower your bad cholesterol. A healthy diet will also help you stave off any adverse effects of stress and anxiety so you could be happier and healthier for life.
About the Author:
Ryan Rivera loves to provide tips that help his readers achieve optimal health and be safe against the damaging effects of stress and anxiety. Visit his Calm Clinic Facebook account for more information.