Bad cholesterol is one of the uprising problems in today’s world as it causes diseases related to Heart, Heart attacks and Brain strokes. As increase in “bad cholesterol” result in formation of plaque, hence results in the diseases related to blood circulation. There are two types of cholesterols
LDL (Low-density lipoprotein)
HDL (High-density lipoprotein)
In which the HDL cholesterol is necessary in carrying out the life activities and is also known as “good cholesterol”. Hence it is very much important to decrease the level of LDL or increase the level of HDL to lead healthy and happy life.
The “High density lipoprotein” also known as “good cholesterol” decrease’s risk of formation of plaque in arteries. It is the most important cholesterol in human as it helps to prevent blood coagulation and blood clots in arteries. The average level of HDL present in the human body should be 50mg/dL or higher.
The “Low density lipoprotein” also known as “bad cholesterol” promotes the increase in the rate of formation of plaque in arteries, which increase the blockage in arteries due to deposition of cholesterol on the walls of arteries. The average level of LDL present in human body must be 100mg/dL or lesser.
The effective ways to lower the cholesterol includes a combination of various methods such as
Practicing healthy lifestyle
Today’s lifestyle includes a lot of unhealthy habits due to the world changing into an online horizon. People sit for hours in front of their system for their profession and training. Smoking, drinking alcohol, eating trans-fat food, not exercising regularly, no proper eating habits are an addition to these unhealthy habits. Which results in an increase in the LDL levels. Hence one with high LDL cholesterol level must always try to practice a healthy lifestyle which includes exercising regularly, having healthy eating habits, drinking alcohol moderately, reduction/elimination of trans-fat food, not smoking, and intake of fiber as much as possible.
Reducing Trans-fat in diet
Trans-fat is unsaturated fat present in the processed food. These fats increase the bad cholesterol level dynamically these fats are uneasy to digest and hence they remain in the body as LDL.
Canned foods, fried foods, various vegetable oils, fast foods, frozen foods contain trans-fat. Hence these types of food must be not consumed or the consumption of such types of food must be reduced. This brings a marginal change in decreasing the level of LDL.
Omega-3 fatty acids present in Salmon and Flax seeds lowers cholesterol. Consumption of Garlic helps in reduction of LDL and prevents blood clots formed due to trans-fat. Mono unsaturated fats and fruits and vegetables are found beneficial in case of lowering the LDL. Olive oil instead of vegetable oil is beneficial to avoid trans-fat in food.
Increasing the HDL by the intake of food which reduces LDL
Not only decreasing the LDL level, but it is also important to focus on increasing the level of HDL as HDL is one of the most important cholesterol present in body. Thus, It is very beneficial to have intakes of food rich in fiber, mostly the fiber which are soluble fiber that increases the HDL levels. One can eat Oatmeal which is one of the best soluble fiber rich foods.
Antioxidants in dark chocolates help in increasing the HDL. An avocado a day can keep LDL away. Various citrus fruits are rich in antioxidants, consuming citrus fruits helps in increasing the HDL levels. Mackerel fish also helps in maintaining the HDL level in body.
Vitamin C supplements are found to be useful in reducing the heart related risks. These supplements are very useful in lowering the LDL level and increasing the HDL level.
Changes in the eating habits
Most of us have the habit of eating those large bulky meals which is one of the main reasons why LDL increases. Rather than eating one large meal, one can eat 2-3 small meals.
Limiting saturated foods like the milk and milk products and meat can also help for controlling LDL levels.
Keeping the track of cholesterol intake can help in this. 100mg must be the cholesterol intake per day. This helps to maintain the cholesterol in body and due to this good cholesterol can be maintained.
Regular Exercising is found to be lost in today’s fast generation. But exercising may reduce the risks of all the circulation related diseases and also lower the level of LDLs. In this time of pandemic one can practice yoga at home, especially the kapalabharti position which is found to be the most beneficial exercise in lowering the LDL levels. One with higher LDL level must practice this position for at least two to three minutes. Also 30 minutes of walk can improve the cholesterol levels. It is scientifically proven that Yoga practiced for three to four months can bring tremendous changes in cholesterol levels.
Moderate physical activities can be also practiced to bring down the levels of LDL. Like Zumba, skipping, dancing, cycling these types of activities if practiced once in a week may reduce the chances of increase in the level of LDL.
Some medications show a decent change in the levels of cholesterol, like
- Artichoke leaf extract
The origin of Artichoke is from Mediterranean and is famous for its various medicinal properties. The leaf extract is filled with lots of nutrition. This helps in increase in the good cholesterol and in return reduces the bad cholesterol. This leaf extracts are found in supplement form and is consumed in masses for the reduction of LDL level. It also helps to keep a control on blood sugar levels hence beneficial for more than one disease.
Niacin is also known as vitamin B3. It is water-soluble vitamin. Hence it doesn’t stay in the body for a long period of time. It acts as an antioxidant and is found to reduce the levels of LDL. However, the medications should be taken under the supervision of the doctors as the long-term dosages of the same may result into the side effects.