A high cholesterol level is a hidden danger that affects millions of people in the United States, but it does not make the headlines as often as other health concerns do. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention report that there are approximately 94 million adults in the United States who are 20 years old or older and have total cholesterol levels that are higher than 200 mg/dL. Within the adult population of the United States, there are 28 million adults who have total cholesterol levels that are higher than 240 mg/dL.” A blood test can tell you if your cholesterol levels are too high even if there are no obvious symptoms of having high cholesterol. High cholesterol can result in a variety of serious health problems if it is not treated, including heart disease, stroke, diabetes, and others. As always, we strongly encourage you to discuss any potential health concerns with your attending physician.
Improve Your Diet
You can take steps to eliminate sources of cholesterol from your diet, and there are many foods that have been shown to lower cholesterol levels naturally. Steer clear of foods high in saturated fat, like red meat and dairy products made with full-fat milk, as well as foods high in trans fat, like oil, crackers, cookies, and cakes. Oatmeal, kidney beans, apples, and Brussels sprouts are all good sources of soluble fibre, which lowers the amount of cholesterol absorbed by the bloodstream. It has been demonstrated that the whey protein found in dairy products can reduce LDL as well as total cholesterol and may improve blood pressure. The levels of cholesterol in the body are not directly affected by consuming foods that are high in omega-3 fatty acids, such as salmon, walnuts, or flaxseed. However, they help maintain healthy heart tissue as well as healthy blood vessels.
Reduce Alcohol Consumption
Even in moderation, drinking alcohol can lead to higher levels of HDL, also known as the “bad” cholesterol. Adults who are healthy should try to limit their alcohol consumption to between one and two drinks per day, or at most, as much as they can. Consuming alcohol on a regular basis increases the risk of developing high blood pressure, heart failure, and stroke, in addition to raising cholesterol levels.
Using tobacco can raise both your blood pressure and your heart rate, which can exacerbate the negative effects of atherosclerosis, which is caused by high cholesterol levels “Marchese explains. “Giving up tobacco improved both blood circulation and lung function, which led to an increase in HDL cholesterol levels. In most former smokers, the risk of developing heart disease is cut in half one year after they stop smoking.
People who carry extra weight around their middle are more likely to have a higher ratio of visceral fat, a type of fat that can have a negative impact on sensitive organs such as the liver. Having extra weight not only makes you more likely to have high cholesterol but also makes your arteries and blood vessels work harder. The consumption of fewer sugary foods, the consumption of more nutritious snacks, and the discovery of ways to increase physical activity at various points throughout the day are all excellent ways to facilitate weight loss.
Increase Activity and Exercise
The production of HDL in your bloodstream is increased when you engage in physical activity; this, in turn, helps clear LDL and reduces the risk of atherosclerosis. The American College of Sports Medicine recommends that adults in good health engage in either approximately 30 minutes of moderate exercise five times per week or 20 minutes of vigorous aerobics three times per week. You should try to find ways to incorporate more activity into your days, such as going for a walk in the afternoon, riding your bike in the evening, playing sports, or engaging in active hobbies such as hiking or swimming.
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