Fats can be accumulated not only on your waistline and hips, but also inside your vessels. “Bad” low-density lipoproteins can fasten to the lining of your arteries and impair the blood flow. If your organs don’t attain sufficient amount of oxygenated blood, they lose ability to work properly.
Buildup of cholesterol can extremely narrow the lumen of arteries, which normally supply blood to your heart and brain. Consequently cells experience hypoxia (oxygen deficiency) and begin to die off, causing heart attack or stroke.
In addition to this, fatty plaques can rupture. As a result, blood cells tend to stick on the damaged area, forming clots. Sometimes these blood clots can tear off the vessel’s wall, travel to another body area and blockage the blood flow to certain organ or its part.
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The good news is that we’re still able to keep under the control cholesterol levels and reverse potentially life-threatening problems.
Here are the most useful tips to lower “bad” cholesterol in your body:
1. Limit unhealthy fats – saturated fats (such as red meat, palm oil, cocoa butter) and trans fats (like cookies, chips, fried foods) were recognized as the main culprits of the fatty plaques. Try to avoid foods, which can clog your arteries and lead to harmful disorders.
2. Eat fiber – you’ve probably heard that there are two types of dietary fiber: soluble and insoluble. Both of them are beneficial for your heart health, but the soluble one can normalize cholesterol levels. You can find it in oats, barley and other whole grains, lentils, vegetables and beans.
3. Be active – exercises can not only lower “bad” LDL cholesterol levels, but also improve “good” HDL cholesterol content. It is recommended to perform your exercises at least 150 minutes per week. Cardio trainings like jogging, swimming and riding a bike are the most effective activities to get rid of excessive cholesterol.
4. Stop smoking – maybe it’s one of the best things you can do for your health. Smoking affects vessels’ lining and boosts “bad” cholesterol levels. That’s why smokers are more likely to suffer from cardiovascular diseases and strokes.
5. Drink in moderation – several studies show that one or two glasses of red wine may have heart-healthy effects. However, excessive alcohol consumption conversely leads to numerous health problems. Drinking in moderation means taking one beverage a day for women and two – for men.
6. Add fish to your menu – salmon, mackerel, sardines and tuna are full of healthy omega-3 fats, that can improve your cholesterol levels. Doctors recommend eating at least two servings of oily fish per week to get heart-healthy benefits.
7. Get rid of excessive weight – it was recognized that those, who are overweight or obese, have extremely high LDL cholesterol levels. Healthy diet, sport, restful sleep and stress reduction can help you reach your healthy weight.
8. Eat nuts – they represent a great source of sterols, fiber, protein and healthy fats, which can help you to lower “bad” LDL cholesterol in the blood. Remember that nuts refer to high-calorie foods, so it’s worth limiting consumption to a handful per day.
9. Try supplements – red yeast rice, psyllium and some other supplements were found to support normalization of the cholesterol levels. In the majority of cases, the dosage of these supplements isn’t strongly determined like in drugs. You can find additional information on the pack or in the instruction.
10. Speak about medicines – sometimes lifestyle changes may appear inefficient in regulation of the blood cholesterol levels. Consult with your doctor about optimal pills-treatment. The most common cholesterol-lower medications include statins, bile acid acid sequestrants and fibrates.
The BetterMe Team wants you and those close to you to live a healthy, happy life! Your health is a valuable thing; look after your body and your mind so that you can live your life to the fullest – Remember you only get one!
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