Who else wants to find natural way to lower cholesterol? Have you recently had a blood screening only to discover that your cholesterol or triglycerides are too high? This is a common experience as we grow older, and for many who have a rare family tendency for it, (called familial hypercholesterolemia) it may occur in early adulthood.
What is cholesterol risk? Are you confused about cholesterol and what to do about it? Are you reluctant to start taking prescription drugs until you are clear about the options? After hearing recent reports about the dangers of statin drugs, you may be asking how I can lower my triglycerides naturally.
Cholesterol is a waxy, fat-like substance (a lipid) which is produced by your liver, with a much lesser amount coming from your diet. It is needed by your body to complete multiple functions such as building and maintaining cell membranes, balancing your hormones and manufacturing vitamin D. It is important to remember that the body requires cholesterol.
Rather than trying to rid your body of it, it is wiser to balance the two kinds and to lower your total triglyceride level. The HDL (High Density Lipoproteins or “good cholesterol”) produces hormones that are vital to the functioning of your body. For men, this HDL level should be above 190, and for women, 178. Levels lower than this mean that you may risk having a stroke. Levels that are too low also are associated with increased mortality rates in cancer patients, impotency and dementia. Another negative association is a reduction of serotonin production, which causes depression.
It is LDL (Low Density Lipoprotein or “bad cholesterol”) which causes problems in the circulatory system and can lead to heart disease. This type turns into plaque which lines the blood vessels, causing them to harden and lose flexibility. As a result, this poses a major risk of heart disease, leading to stroke, hardening of the arteries and heart attack.
We are inundated with drug advertizing that may leave you with the impression that prescription drugs are the best answer to the problem of lowering LDL. But a little exploration will show that there are some problems, such as lowering too much cholesterol as well as a depletion of CoQ10, with taking statin drugs. This is essential to remember because the body must have CoQ10 in order for muscles to function. And remember that the heart is a muscle!
So what natural options do you have to lower cholesterol without medication? Some of the biggest causes of high cholesterol and triglyceride levels are obesity, smoking and alcohol abuse and lack of exercise. You can address these with lifestyle changes that include weight loss and abstaining from tobacco and alcohol. Not easy, but certainly with consistent steps and support, they are attainable goals.
There are some dietary changes that you might also consider. We are learning that not all fat should be eliminated from the diet. Lipids are necessary for digestion and body function. Instead, learn to incorporate healthy fats which include olive oil, fish oil and avocados. Eliminate bad fats such as hydrogenated oils (unsaturated fats hardened to make them more solid) often found in margarines. Cooking oils that are hydrogenated (commonly used to cook ‘fast foods’) raise cholesterol levels considerably. The hydrogenation process changes fatty acids into trans-fatty acids and these cause a significant increase in LDLs and a noticeable loss of HDLs. Get in the habit of reading food labels, cook more whole foods, and stop eating fast foods.
Consider taking quality supplements that contain these natural ingredients:
A substance extracted from sugar, rice bran and beeswax that significantly reduces the production of low-density (LDL) cholesterol as well as increasing high-density (HDL) cholesterol -balancing cholesterol levels – via the alcohols it contains. Policosanol also helps to remove plaque from the arteries.
Produced when green tea ferments, they scavenge radicals to produce antioxidative effects. Theaflavins not only lower LDL cholesterol but also raise HDL cholesterol at the same time.
A natural emulsifying agent that dissolves cholesterol, inhibits its absorption into the gastrointestinal tract and reduces oxidation. Lecithin increases cholesterol oxidation into bile salts, thus helping it to be excreted more easily
A plant sterol with a similar chemical structure to cholesterol, it reduces the absorption of cholesterol in the gastrointestinal tract by competing for the same space in cellulose molecules.
Rice Bran oil, Oryzanol
The outer grain hull of the rice containing fiber that reduces cholesterol absorption and increases bile acid secretion.
A non-toxic component of the oil extracted from citrus rind. It is a natural solvent that builds up in the liver, helps to dissolve cholesterol gall stones.
All of the above ingredients are important and most are available to you on the world market, yet none of them will individually address all the multiple causes of high cholesterol. But when they are combined synergistically, along with co-factors and trace elements, then you have the best possible chance of resolving and rebalancing your problem naturally, with no negative side effects. If you want to avoid cholesterol risk, making nutritional and lifestyle changes may be just what you need.