According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, 71 million adults have high cholesterol; the majority of these are male. But with a few lifestyle changes and healthy recipes, the bad cholesterol (LDL) goes down and the good (HDL) goes up. Let’s say you just saw your doctor and he or she informed you that your bad cholesterol was too high. That’s reason to change, but not despair. Did you know that with the proper maintenance you can turn that around in as little as 6 weeks?
Here are 8 tips to get you started:
- #1: Set a target and consider meds if you need them: If you have a family history of heart disease, high blood pressure and cholesterol, you might want to set a more aggressive target LDL of less than 70. Also, take into consideration that the fastest way to lower cholesterol is by taking physician prescribed medications. By all means live a healthy lifestyle, but if your doctor thinks you need medicine as well, take comfort in the fact that it won’t take long to see positive results!
- #2: Avoid saturated fat: the best way to do that is to swap olive oil for butter or vegetable oil when you cook and bake. If you’re a meat loving guy, switch from red meat to fish, Healthy Careers has an excellent salmon recipe, and agrees with cardiologists who advocate eating fish at least twice a week.
- #3: Eat more fiber: Sources of soluble fiber absorb bad cholesterol while it’s in the digestive tract and can be found in quite tasty foods. Check out these yummy oatmeal breakfast recipes to get you started.
- #4: Get a pedometer and….: a brisk walk of 45 minutes raises good (HDL) cholesterol by as much as 10%! Advocates of longevity and good health recommend taking 10,000 steps a day.
- #5: Take a fish oil capsule every day: These supplements from the vitamin aisle have a profound effect on lowering cholesterol and triglycerides.
- #6: Steam Your Veggies: when you steam beets, asparagus, okra, carrots, eggplant and green beans, your liver responds by doing a better job of binding bile acids; this leads to your liver using more bad cholesterol to clean out your bloodstream.
- #7: Look for sterol fortified orange juice, margarine, milk, soymilk, cheese and breads: Sterols are compounds that compete with the cholesterol in your food for absorption within your digestive tract. Some food manufacturers have added sterols to all the foods listed in this bullet point.
- #8: Add these bad cholesterol blasters to your cart while you’re at it: almonds, olive oil, oatmeal, blueberries, dark chocolate, pinto beans and tomatoes are all mentioned in a worthwhile medical article on lowering bad cholesterol from RealAge.com.
Start Living Healthy Today!
Healthy Careers supports healthy lifestyles for nurses and therapists with busy careers ; you can always count on us to promote super foods that not only do your body good, but are good enough to share with the ones you love. Check in regularly for lifestyle enhancing tips that let you live large with a trimmer waistline.