Easy Ways to Lower Bad Cholesterol
Cholesterol is a fatty deposit that can build up in the artery walls over time. Unfortunately this problem starts early on in our lives because we don't have the best eating habits when we are young. Lowering these levels is essential for cardiac health. It is now reported that children are being diagnosed with high cholesterol levels.
Big Changes in Cooking
As soon as I was out on my own, fast food became my staple diet every day. I never gave it a moments' thought what I was putting in my mouth would have a detrimental effect on my health later on.
When I found out that my low density lipids ( ldl ) was too high I immediately took matters into my own hands. Yes, my doctor gave me a trial sample and prescription for a statin drug to lower it, but it had side effects. After researching the drug and finding information that concerned me, I decided to cut out a lot of ingredients in my diet.
I started on the Atkins Diet ™ , and thought I would start to lose and keep my weight down. Apparently it was unhealthy for me, because it raised my ldl levels dangerously high. I then cut out all butter, red meat, eggs, cheese, whole milk, wine, (actually reduced ) salt and simple sugars.
Tips to lower Cholesterol
New Cooking Regiment
There are a few resources to help lower the low density fats in your blood stream and eat healthy. The Diet Solution is not a diet filled with expensive pre-packaged diet food or dangerous pills.
It's a program developed by Nutritionist and exercise specialist, Isabel De Los Rios that makes a lot of sense. her site is filled with helpful and healthy recipes, articles and a sensible approach to losing weight.
Another good program is the Healthy Urban Kitchen,which is intended to help those with busy schedules. The Healthy Urban Kitchen cookbook helped me lower my cholesterol level and prepare healthier recipes.
To reduce the bad cholesterol, I needed to increase the good cholesterol.
For breakfast, I now eat whole oatmeal that has to be cooked; not microwaved. It is not instant, and it tastes better. I will slice some banana or strawberries into it .
I still drink my two cups of coffee, but now use lower caffeinated coffee, low fat milk or soy milk and no sugar. I'll be honest, it's not easy drinking coffee with soy milk. Sometimes I use rice milk but it is a little watery.
For my mid morning snack, I eat a handful of almonds, or a serving of yogurt.
My lunch is no longer a hamburger or fried chicken or sandwich. I will cook some brown rice, add some baked chicken (no skin) and add some frozen or canned vegetables. And some chopped garlic or onion goes into every hot meal I make too. I also drink more water or real fruit juice before eating, as to keep from overeating.
The afternoon snack may consist of more almonds, peanuts or piece of fruit such as a gala apple,strawberries or a glass of a fruit smoothie that I made up the night before. The smoothie I make has 1 whole banana, five or six large strawberries, a cup of orange juice, a cup of Activia® yogurt, and a cup of crushed ice.
A cup of hot green tea is another option for the afternoon pick-me-up.
Low cholesterol Supper
Supper is a bowl of low sodium chicken noodle and vegetable soup and slice of whole at or grain bread.
Another option is a fresh green salad, with pieces of chicken,and olive oil with vinegar. No, it's not a very exciting menu but it works for me.
I would be less than honest if I told you I didn't cheat every so often.
Once a month, I do indulge in some licorice, or occasional Wendys® fries and chicken sandwich combo.
Sodium and other ingredients
Warnings about labels
I found that just because the labels says its low fat or low sodium, or low sugar, don't buy it. Read every label or research online before shopping. many labels are out right lies. Each label gives serving size, so don't think that can of soup is a serving size. It may be two to four serving sizes.
Low sugar means there isn't the simple sugar but high fructose corn syrup in it. Low sodium could mean 900 mg in a serving! The recommended total per day for an adult is 2300mg.
Fiber has been touted for many years by grandparents, health professionals and television ads. I think it didn't catch on because it is not exciting and new. The big drug companies can't make as much money from it as the synthetic prescriptions or the diet food companies.so it's not prompted as well.
The simple fact is, eating more foods high in fiber and taking a fiber supplement in the form of a drink or tablet, well work wonders. cholesterol is absorbed by extra fiber in the stomach and intestines.
People are in the habit of taking it first thing in the morning but it needs to be taken at night when you are finished eating and taking your supplements. The reason for that is simple; fiber absorbs everything in your intestinal tract; the bad fats and the good vitamins, CoQ10, folic acid, multivitamins and anything else.
Another habit to change will help you in the long run.
Home and lab Cholesterol Testing
You don't have to visit your general physician as often to get your cholesterol checked. It takes times out of your schedule and it is very inconvenient.
There are cholesterol test that you can give yourself at home. They are very easy and very accurate if you follow the directions. I'm not saying that these should take the place of a lab test but will keep you informed.If there is a high reading then schedule an appointment with your doctor.
I have found a few independent labs that will allow patients to pay for and order their own cholesterol tests without a doctor's prescription. Some states such as New York do not allow this, so check your states regulations first.
Supplements for lowering ldl cholesterol
My experiences with healthier cooking lead me to find a good combination of practices. I not an expert or have formal training in nutrition, so I am relaying my experiences. Eating habits have to change after the age of fifty and unfortunately, your health will suffer if you don't change your cooking habits as well.
I found that when I prepare real foods, and not packaged food, I do feel and look better. It is tough to break the sugar habit, I give myself permission to have some candy once every few weeks.
Wine may be good for your health as well but more than 1 cup had a negative effect for me as far as weight gain.
I believe supplement do aid in lowering the bad cholesterol levels and I have had good results with the following.
All in all, along with supplements such as Cholestoff Plus, Pantethine, CoQ10. folic acid, and olive leaf extract, I have dropped my cholesterol by 70 points.
Recently ,in the last year, I have been taking a new supplement called L-Carnitine. It is another way to lower LDL levels and avoid anther harmful statin prescription. This provides an energy boost to the cells and you,so you have the energy to exercise more. No,it is not a fat burner and will not speed up your heart rate. It actually is beneficial to heart functions,is an antioxidant, helps male infertility and kidney function.
Garlic is the oldest and most reliable blood pressure and cholesterol reducer I recently discovered. The fresh clove, minced and drank in some milk is recommended. I prefer to cook with it but it is a strong medicine so I opted for the tablets.The best supplement form of garlic is Kyloic brand. Health food stores, drug chains and online carry these options.
Here's a link to Wikipedia for more information.
A lot of research went into finding products and foods that would help me. Don't settle on a prescription right away until you have exhausted other alternatives.
Have you tried to lower the ldl (bad) cholesterol without a prescription?
© 2010 Stacie L