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4 Ways to Lower Your Cholesterol

By Edited Apr 30, 2015 1 7

I've always had a pretty good idea that high cholesterol was a bad thing, but beyond eating some Cheerios now and then, I've never known what people were supposed to do about it, or why, or when - so I decided to find out.
The reason you don't want high cholesterol is that it builds up in your arteries, putting you at higher risk for strokes and heart attacks. If your cholesterol is below 200, you're probably okay. If it's above 240, it's time to address the problem.
You should also be aware that high-lipid cholesterol is actually good for you - it actually removes the fatty low-lipid cholesterols from your system. We'll talk about that more as we go along - how you can increase your good cholesterol and get rid of the bad cholesterol.
There are four big things that help to lower cholesterol. You can choose to work on any or all of these things - the truth is that the first two will help you with the third one, and the last should only be your solution if the first three options aren't helping.

1. Exercise
Exercise helps the body to produce good, high-lipid cholesterol and get rid of bad, low-lipid cholesterol. Healthy diet alone will help to lower your overall cholesterol level, but limiting fats significantly will also lower the good cholesterol in your body. By lowering your fat intake and exercising, you'll continue to lower the bad cholesterol even more.

2. Diet
To keep your cholesterol low, your fat intake should be limited to 25-35% of your total diet. That may sound like a lot, but the other caveat is that it should mostly be good fats - mono- and polyunsaturated fats and omega-3 fatty acids. These are the kinds of fats found in vegetables and fish rather than the fats found in eggs, meats and dairy. By limiting your intake of fats in general and focusing on good fats rather than saturated and trans fats, you can lower your cholesterol significantly.

3.Weight Loss
Being overweight tends to give you a higher level of bad cholesterol, so losing weight will help you to lower your high cholesterol (especially if you lose the weight by exercising and eating healthy foods, eh?)

Though cholesterol-lowering medications aren't for everyone, for people who are unable to lower their cholesterol through healthy eating and exercising, they can be the best option for lowering the risk of heart attack and stroke. However, just because the good eating and exercising didn't work to completely fix the problem doesn't mean it should be abandoned in favor of pills. Any medication you take won't be as effective if it has to cope with a diet of saturated fats and couch potato-hood.

A healthy lifestyle consisting of good eating and exercise is a good idea for anyone, even if he or she has not been diagnosed with high cholesterol - but if you know you have it, the time to change your habits is now, before your first heart attack.



Aug 11, 2009 7:00pm
don't forget niacin. look into taking niacin instead of liver-destroying statins. i've also heard that heart disease is actually caused by B-vitamin deficiency. also use breating exercises like qigong.
Aug 23, 2009 3:53pm
Some doctors will push the meds but you can do a lot just by exercising and diet.
Aug 28, 2009 5:09pm
This is a great article!
Sep 2, 2009 1:16pm
Great Article! I do not have a Cholesterol problem. But i guess its better to be cautious.
Sep 18, 2009 4:18pm
Great tips. Thanks!
Nov 5, 2009 1:21am
Side effects of Niacin also include liver toxicity, as well as hyperglycemia and elevation of uric acid levels. They should not be taken by diabetics or by those that have gout. While statins do sometimes elevate liver enzymes, they are not usually associated with other evidence of liver damage.
Sep 13, 2010 1:13am
Eating a lot of bitter gourd will help in lowering bad cholesterol too.
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