Today’s unhealthy and stressful lifestyles are adding new diseases and health problem. The prominent among them are heart problems due to increased cholesterol levels. Like fats, cholesterol doesn’t dissolve in water and its transport depends on lipoproteins, which carry cholesterol, fat and fat-soluble vitamins in the blood.
Different kinds of lipoproteins have different effects on health. High levels of low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cause cholesterol deposits in blood vessel wall which lead to clogged arteries, heart attacks and kidney failure. While high-density lipoprotein (HDL) helps to carry cholesterol away from vessel walls and helps in prevention of heart diseases.
A simple lifestyle changes can helps to reduce bad cholesterol (LDL) and good cholesterol (HDL) level in body. So try out this little change in way of living and keep your cholesterol in control.
Healthy food habits:
A healthy food habit helps a lot in controlling body cholesterol level and reduces the risk of heart diseases.
Diet containing monounsaturated fats helps in reducing harmful LDL. Monounsaturated fats are healthy because they decrease harmful LDL cholesterol, increase good HDL cholesterol and reduce harmful oxidation.
Source of monounsaturated fats:
- Olives and olive oil
- Canola oil
- Tree nuts like almond, walnuts, pecans, hazelnuts, cashews
Trans-fat is a kind of unsaturated fat modified by the process called hydrogenation. Trans-fat increases total cholesterol by increasing LDL while decreases beneficial HDL by 20%.
Eat soluble fiber :
The beneficial bacteria present in intestines that is
probiotics use soluble fiber for their own nutrition. And this good bacteria reduces both harmful kinds of lipoproteins, LDL and VLDL.
Use polyunsaturated fats:
Omega 3 fatty acids are polyunsaturated fats which are healthy especially for heart. They are found in sea foods and fish oil supplements. For vegetarians its source is seeds and tree nuts (but not peanut). Polyunsaturated fats also reduces the risk of metabolic syndrome and type 2 diabetes.
Exercise is a win-win for heart health. Along with the physical fitness, combating obesity it also reduces harmful LDL and increases beneficial good cholesterol HDL. Add up at list 30 minutes of exercise to your daily routine for healthy heart.
Over weight is one of the main factor which contributes to high cholesterol level. Losing 5-10% of your weight can improve good cholesterol level. Adding physical activity even in 10 minutes interval several times a day can help you begin to lose weight.
Smoking is always injurious to health in every manner. It appears to increase the level of bad lipoproteins, decreases HDL and cause hindrance to body’s ability to send cholesterol back to the liver to be stored. Quitting smoking will add healthier side to your life.
Merit of quitting smoking:
Within 20 minutes of quitting it will decrease blood pressure and heart rate. Within one year risk of heart disease is half then smoker. And within 15 year your risk of heart disease is similar to the one who never smoked.
Alcohol use in moderation:
If you drink alcohol do so in moderation because moderate alcohol intake reduces the heart diseases risk. It is found that the ethanol in alcoholic drinks increases good cholesterol (HDL) and reduces the risk of heart diseases, though too much alcohol harms liver and increases the risk of dependence. So be careful and consume a little amount not more.