Health: 6 Easy & Natural Ways To Lower Your Cholesterol
It is not new that a good diet, lots of exercise, and more are ways to lower one’s cholesterol, but there are some easy and natural ways to reduce our cholesterol level.
Some foods naturally lower our cholesterol level, some of them are explained below;
Onion Extract & Garlic
Deepika Gopal, MD, a cardiologist at The Heart Hospital Baylor Plano, believes both onion and garlic have cholesterol-lowering properties although she, like other scientists, isn’t sure why. She said;
onion and garlic are both very useful in lowering cholesterol, based on what we’ve seen in Indian cooking.
Bottom line, onion could help with your cholesterol (it certainly has helped a few rats), but don’t expect miracles.
Laxatives can also help lower cholesterol, but only if you take them the right way. Soluble fibers found in laxatives like Metamucil block the absorption of cholesterol into the blood.
As it makes its way through your stomach and intestines, that jelly-like substance picks up cholesterol, keeping it from getting absorbed. Since Metamucil grabs cholesterol from food, and not cholesterol your body produces,
It’s only effective when taken with a big meal. Besides blocking cholesterol absorption, soluble fiber like Metamucil has secondary effects that can also lower cholesterol, like making you feel full longer so you cut down on fatty snacks.
Tofu & Soymilk
Several studies have found that eating tofu and other soy products in moderation reduces LDL cholesterol.
Harvard Medical School doctors say eating about 10 ounces of tofu or 2½ cups of soymilk a day can reduce bad cholesterol by 5 to 6%.
Tofu also contains phytosterols and is a low-cholesterol protein, so replacing meat with tofu at least one night a week cuts the amount of cholesterol in your diet.
A daily glass of red wine isn’t going to do anything for your LDL. However, it has been found to increase levels of HDL cholesterol (the “good” kind). “You can compare HDL to Liquid Draino,” says Gopal. “It actually cleans out your arteries. So the higher your HDL, the better your total cholesterol.” But this doesn’t mean you can grab a bottle of wine and go to town. Drinking alcohol in excess is still bad for you, and “excess” might be less than you think. The Mayo Clinic recommends no more than one drink a day for women and for men older than 65. Men under 65 can have two drinks a day. But if you don’t drink, there’s certainly no reason to start now. “I would always caution people about alcohol because it has side effects,” says Amin. “In some people it can worsen heart failure; in others it can worsen liver disease.” But if you already drink every day, she recommends you follow the guidelines and talk to your doctor.
A study from the Nihon University School of Medicine in Japan found that for women not getting enough sleep (less than five hours) and getting too much sleep (more than eight hours) both correlated to higher levels of bad and lower levels of good cholesterol. “Our cholesterol metabolism occurs at night,” says Amin. “And so that’s why a lot of times the medications we take for cholesterol are prescribed to be taken at bedtime.” Losing sleep or getting too much sleep both disrupt your body’s processing of the fats and sugars you ate throughout the day. But Amin says getting enough sleep also has a secondary effect on cholesterol. “If you’re sleeping enough you have the energy to do the sort of things that allow you to maintain a healthy lifestyle, like choosing healthy foods and exercising regularly.”
The licorice candy you’re used to isn’t actually licorice at all—much of what’s sold in candy stores won’t do anything to get rid of cholesterol (sorry). It’s licorice root that you want, which can be taken in pill form. A handful of small studies have found licorice root both reduces LDL cholesterol and fat buildup, but more research is needed to determine why and how well it works. Licorice root can interact dangerously with other medications like insulin, laxatives, and contraceptives, so talk to your doctor before you try it out.