If you haven’t had a blood test recently then I highly recommend you do. You never know what may be lurking underneath. If you want to know how you can reduce your cholesterol naturally then you need to continue reading. I’ll share 3 scientifically proven methods of reducing your LDL (bad cholesterol) levels.
- Eliminate all red meat
- Transition to a plant-based diet
- Eat more fiber
- Decrease sugar consumption
- Decrease systemic inflammation
Over the past several months my routine has been turned upside down with the addition of our daughter to the family. My pre-child daily routine has been demolished and I’ve been forced to figure out how to fit all the things I need to accomplish into the limited hours of the day. The main challenge is that everything revolves around my daughter’s schedule now and as a result my exercise routine has suffered. I know, I know I’m sucking at life right now.
I recently donated blood with LifeShare and when I got the thank-you card back they told me that my cholesterol was high. Turns out I actually have a significant family history for high cholesterol too, welp. Well, I knew immediately that my schedule needed to have some major adjustments made to it. I could not take care of my daughter and wife if I couldn’t even take care of myself. Plus, I was not in the mood to even consider getting on statin drugs to regulate my health. So after consulting with some physician colleagues and doing my own research, these are the top 3 recommendations I’ve begun incorporating into my life.
3 Recommendations on How to Reduce Cholesterol Naturally
1. Limit meat consumption
Why? Because meat is full of saturated fats. Red meats are the worst types of meat for achieving and maintaining long-term health. If you must have meat in your diet, then try to keep it to fish like halibut, herring, mackerel, salmon, and sardines. Chicken is a happy medium between the evils of red meat and the glory of fish, but make sure you trim the fat and are not eating the skin. This is the first recommendation on reducing your cholesterol naturally. You can see results in as quickly as one month!
2. Transition to a plant-based diet
Study after study has shown us that vegetarians have much lower cholesterol levels than meat-eaters. Vegetarian diets are low in total fat and low in saturated fat. Since cholesterol is found in animal products like meat, dairy, and eggs, vegans virtually consume a cholesterol free diet. Therefore, cutting out meat completely would be the ideal situation. But please don’t try to make wholesale changes immediately! Your body will reject it and crave for a taste of ribeye. Instead try to incorporate 1 vegetarian dish at a time into your diet and slowly begin the transition. This is the second recommendation on reducing your cholesterol naturally. Remember, slow and steady is what sets habits for a lifetime.
3. Eat more fiber
Eating more soluble fiber allows your body to trap the cholesterol and pass it out of your system. Foods like beans, oats, barley, fruits, and vegetables are high in fiber content. Beans are actually incredible for lowering cholesterol; black, butter, chickpea, kidney, navy beans especially. One cup of these types of beans a day can reduce your cholesterol by 10% in 6 weeks! This is our third and final recommendation on how to reduce cholesterol naturally.
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Bonus Cholesterol Reducing Tips
While exercise is good for your body and facilitates improved cardiovascular function, it does not reduce your LDL (bad cholesterol) it does however increase your HDL (good cholesterol).
Decrease Sugar Consumption
Excessive sugar consumption is a known contributor and significantly linked to heart disease and high cholesterol. It also triggers inflammation in our blood vessels that is the main culprit for heart disease.
Decrease Chronic Inflammation
Being overweight, high sugar consumption, stress, high omega 6 consumption (cooking oils), and lack of omega 3’s in your diet are just a few factors that increase inflammation in our bodies. Chronic inflammation causes oxidative damage to the cells and tissues of your body. Inflammation damages the lining of your arteries. When lesions develop in your arteries, cholesterol comes and tries to repair the damage. The danger is having that cholesterol accumulate at those damaged sites and narrow your arteries which can then lead to a stroke or heart attack.
Turmeric has been scientifically shown to decrease inflammation inside our bodies.
Research has shown that Omega 3’s are best consumed from fish oils rather than plants
Studies show that 2 teaspoons of apple cider vinegar with 8 ounces of water daily will reduce LDL levels