Do you know that cholesterol itself isn’t bad? In fact, just the right amount of it plays a very important roles in your body. Cholesterol has 3 main functions which are so significant that without them we wouldn’t exist, and they are:
- Making vitamin D and some hormones.
- Helping to build cell walls.
- Creating bile acids that help you digest foods.
So why has it seen as bad for our health so far? Because if the amount of LDL is too high or of HDL is too low, you are at risk of heart stroke, high blood pressure, diabetes,… Unfortunately, there are no warning signs for high cholesterol symptoms. They develop slowly and silently over the years.
Cholesterol comes from two sources: the natural production of our bodies and the foods we eat. That means, from now on, the most important things you should do is to change your lifestyle, including building a low cholesterol diet plan and joining some physical activities.
You can follow different ways to lower your cholesterol levels. There is no right or wrong at all. Those plans are designed for many people, and all you have to do is choosing the perfect for your preferences.
We all know that cholesterol comes from animals. However, if you are a meat lover, it doesn’t mean you have to remove meat from your diet. Some meats are higher in fat than others and should be consumed in minimal amounts or limited. For example, poultry (duck, goose), lamb, veal, ground beef, bacon, organ meats (esp. liver).
In stead, you can try round cuts of pork or beef, and never forget the greatest option: fish (tuna, salmon, mackerel and trout). The most healthy and recommended ways of cooking are: steaming, boiling, and broiling.
One more diet meal plan should be considered is “ Weekly menu ideas for breakfast, lunch, and dinner”.
_ Let start a day with low fat low cholesterol diet meal by taking some fruits with a cup of skim milk and a low- fat muffin with a tub of magarine on top.
_ Another choice is a serving of prepared oatmeal capped with ¼ cup of seedless rainsins and 2 tablespoons of flax seed.
Lunch: try to focus on fruits and veggies
_ Option 1: Have a salad of green spinach or kale for additional dietary fiber. Two days a week, you can top your meals with chicken or salmon.
_ Option 2: Incorporate a tuna sandwich with whole-wheat bread and top with tomato slices, carrot cuts,… It is better to add a glass of low-fat yogurt to your lunch.
_ Option 3: skinless chicken breast served over lettuce salad with almonds, green spinach and blueberries; brown rice, tomato slices, and a little bit parmesan cheese.
_ The best diet meal for dinner is: a bowl of fiber loaded vegetarian chili, 2 servings of blended veggies using balsamic vinegar and olive oil, and a glass of orange juice.
_ If you are a meat eater, you may like to try a barbecued trout, brown rice, and a cup of steam broccoli. Besides, we also have grilled salmon served with sweet cooked potato and broccoli.
These ideas above are absolutely in details, and someone may not like to follow strictly. Therefore, I will provide you 8 general steps to naturally lower your high cholesterol levels so that you can have a plan on your own
Increase the amount of foods that are rich in fiber in your diet plan.
Foods recommendation: raw fruits, beans, brown rice, whole-grain breads
Eat and cook with egg-whites rather than whole eggs.
Recommendation: change your dishes by including 2 egg-whites insted of 1 egg
Consume low-fat dairy foods
Foods recommendation: fat-free buttermilk and plain yogurt, Mozzarella, Cheddar, Provolone
Have portions of fish at least twice a week.
Fish recommendation: halibut, tuna, salmon, herring, mackerel…
- Select low-fat meat and limit your daily meat consumption to 6 oz ( 170g)
- Increase the amount of veggies in your healthy diet meals.
- Eat fresh fruits or nuts, and avoid snack foods.
- Finally, control the consumption of foods rich in saturated and trans fats. The highest cholesterol foods must be avoided are liver, egg yolk, skin of poultry, and red meats.
We’ve talked a lot about low-fat foods; nevertheless, some people may prefer to drug treatments, and it is interesting to know about some herbs that can naturally decrease cholesterol levels. Natural remedies reduce cholesterol levels by dissolving fat in the blood. There are thounsands of herb, so you’d better examine carefully before taking.
Garlic: It can help decrease total cholesterol, LDL cholesterol, triglycerides levels. However, garlic may prolong bleeding and blood clotting time; therefore, it shouldn’t be taken prior to surgery or with blood-thinning drugs
Green tea: It is able to increase HDL cholesterol levels while decreasing LDL cholesterol levels.
Ginger: It can reduce the bad cholesterol levels, and because it’s a blood thinner as for garlic, we’d better not take it with other blood thinners.
Soybeans: Its function is to prevent coronary heart desease by lowering LDL cholesterol and triglycerides.
These are just few samples of cholesterol remedies. If you want to use this kind of treatment, you should consult doctors’ advise first.
It could be a mistake if we focus too much on healthy eating plan and forget about exercising schedule. Research shows that moderate exercise can also reduce LDL cholesterol and raise HDL cholesterol.
You don’t need to be experts or professional athletes to have a healthy lifestyles. All you need to do is making simple lifestyle changes, creating low fat low cholesterol plan, and exercising regularly. It is better to take control now before everything is too late.