Guidelines For Lowering Your Cholesterol By Diet

There are two ways of looking at the word ‘diet’.

  1. One is to think of it simply as the food we eat.
  2. The other is to think of it as ‘a diet’, a regime of cutting out certain foods for a specific reason, generally to lose weight.

Both have a role in helping to achieve lower cholesterol levels or to maintain normal levels. A simple change in diet, combined with a few other easy but effective lifestyle changes can make a significant impact on lowering your blood cholesterol.

Choose ‘healthier’ fats

Cialis canadian pharmacy

  • A healthy diet includes food from all the different food groups: carbohydrates; proteins; fats; fruit and vegetables. To normalize cholesterol levels it’s important to cut down or avoid saturated fats. For a healthy heart, around 25% of your daily calories should come from fat, however, not more than 7% of these should be from saturated fats.
  • Trans fats should also be avoided. They are found in processed goods, especially cakes, biscuits and pastries, and some margarines. They are listed on the ingredients as hydrogenated vegetable oils. Trans fats not only raise your levels of LDL (‘bad’) cholesterol but they also damage your blood vessels.
  • Monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats, such as those found in olive oil, on the other hand, can help to raise lower total levels of blood cholesterol. Extra virgin olive oil has particularly effective cholesterol lowering qualities as it is less processed and is very high in beneficial anti-oxidants.

  • Similarly, if you avoid fatty meats – especially red meat and offal – which are high in saturated fats, you could replace these with nuts which are rich in polyunsaturated oils. Walnuts in particular also help to keep blood vessels healthy. Fish and other foods containing omega-3 fatty acids are also ideal in helping to reduce high blood cholesterol and promote good heart health.

Of course, all fatty and oily foods are higher in calories and to maintain a balanced diet they should be eaten in moderation. For example, a handful of nuts a day is sufficient.

Other cholesterol busting food

Fruit, vegetables, whole grains, beans and pulses also play an important role in a low fat diet as substitutes for foods high in saturated fats. Oatmeal, barley, kidney beans, apples, pears, bananas and prunes, for example, also contain high amounts of soluble fibre which helps to reduce ‘bad’ (LDL) cholesterol. It’s worth noting, though, that a high carb/low fat diet can result in higher blood cholesterol as the liver starts to produce increased levels of cholesterol to cope with the large amounts of carbohydrate. Therefore, you should maintain your carbohydrate intake below the recommended maximum of 60% of total diet. Other lifestyle changes Lack of exercise or physical activity can increase you LDL (‘bad’) cholesterol levels. This is particularly true for those who are overweight. 30 minutes of brisk exercise, 5 days a week can be enough to raise your HDL (‘good’) cholesterol by as much as 5%. Brisk exercise is simply anything that increases your heart rate. If 30 minutes is too much, break it down into two 15 minute segments or 3 ten minute sessions. Swimming, cycling and aerobics are all great, but a good session of house cleaning or tidying up the garden can work just as well for those short of time! Regularly drinking excessive alcohol impacts adversely on your levels of both cholesterol and triglycerides. If you stop smoking, you could raise your ‘good’ cholesterol by up to 10%


3 Responses Leave a comment

Leave a Reply