Healthy Heart

What are the Methods to Lower Cholesterol Levels?

Worried about your cholesterol and triglyceride levels? Planning to take another blood test to check on your cholesterol levels? Did you get a warning from your physician regarding elevated levels of triglycerides and LDL (low-density lipoproteins, the ‘bad’ cholesterol) cholesterol in your bloodstream? Still frustrated at the troublesome task of dieting and fasting to reduce the levels of these components? All of the above are normal experiences for many of us. But keep your fears aside – reducing the levels of cholesterol is not that hard. Appropriate medications and lifestyle changes are all that is needed to bring it back under control. So gear up for a healthy life with normal levels of these substances!

  • Treatment of high cholesterol levels depends on factors like family history, medical condition of the person, and other risk factors. The target level for each person depends on these risk factors. Those with high risk should try to bring the LDL level down to 70 while for those with moderate risk, the target level is 130. Those with low-risk levels can afford to have LDL levels up to 160.
  • Medications are suggested for those at high risk of cardiovascular diseases. Statins, fibrates, niacin, and bile acid resins are the most common drugs used for the reduction of LDL. This when compared to regular physical activity can improve the levels of good’ cholesterol, HDL. Moderate exercise like brisk walking, when done with consistency, is helpful in regulating the levels.
  • Limiting the intake of high-cholesterol-foods is another step to be taken up in controlling the levels. This should be followed by having more of smart fats by including canola oil and olive oil in place of regular fats.
  • Including more fibers in the diet helps to absorb cholesterol and thus helps in reducing the levels in the blood.
  • Experts suggest that having green tea instead of other beverages helps in lowering the total cholesterol levels.
  • Having a few nuts like walnuts and almonds help in reducing bad cholesterol in the blood.
  • Foods rich in essential fatty acids like omega-3 fatty acids have beneficial effects in reducing cholesterol levels. Salmons and other fishes like tuna or fish oils are effective in this regard.
  • Quitting smoking reduces high cholesterol levels.
  • Opt for products that contain cholesterol-lowering compounds like stanols.

Discuss with your doctor to decide on the best plan to have optimum levels of cholesterol.