Philip suffers from high cholesterol. High cholesterol levels are usually treated using certain medications, the most common of which are statin drugs. While effective, these drugs do have certain side effects that could be unpleasant to some individuals. In Philip’s case, the statin drug he was using was affecting his liver. His Doctor prescribed a different drug, but Philip decided to try to reduce his cholesterol levels naturally. Although medications for this condition are not habit forming, they sometimes mislead people to believe that cholesterol levels are dependent on how much statin drugs they take. The truth is that high levels of cholesterol are caused by diet and lifestyle choices. By changing these factors, it is possible to take control and improve cardiovascular health. In fact, after making certain lifestyle changes, Philip’s cholesterol level dropped dramatically. His doctor was really surprised and couldn’t believe that he accomplished this without medication. You can lower your cholesterol naturally too. Here are 4 natural ways to lower cholesterol effectively:
Make distinct changes in your diet.
The first step to keeping cholesterol levels low is to eliminate all types of foods that contain heart-heavy ingredients such as hydrogenated oils. These types of oils are called metabolic disruptors because they affect the body’s ability to process fats. These are also difficult for the body to digest, which means some amount is left inside the body after normal elimination processes have taken place. A few examples of foods and food ingredients that contain hydrogenated oils include:
- white flour/white bread
- vegetable shortening
- peanut butter
- non-dairy creamer and whipped toppings
- ice cream
- processed flour tortillas
- most ice cream products
- processed foods/junk foods
Eliminate animal meat from the diet.
Philip absolutely loves chicken, but has decided to cut back on red meats. Red meats are the source of saturated animal fat. This substance is found in pork, beef, lamb and other varieties of red meat. Meats are usually healthful but not if they contain fat. This type of fat is not compatible with the human body and should not be ingested. If your cholesterol level is already high, there is no reason why you need to include red meats in your diet.
Choose cholesterol-lowering foods.
Not all oils are unhealthy. In fact, there are some that can even help lower LDL cholesterol – the bad type. Use oils such as olive oil and coconut oil for cooking and for preparing salads. It is also a good idea to eat nuts such as pecans, cashews, peanuts and macadamias. Stock on grains such as millet and quinoa and include foods such as barley grass, broccoli sprouts, wheat grass, soy and soy products in your diet.
An important component of any get-healthy-again program is physical exercise. Exercise challenges the heart to work faster and become healthier. Philip started riding his bicycle as a way to get more active. Try to allocate at least 45 minutes of continuous workout daily to get about 5 hours of exercise each week. Exercise does not only help lower bad cholesterol, it also helps you shed excess pounds so you feel lighter and more flexible.