Most people know that low density lipoproteins (LDLs) are “bad cholesterol” which deposit plaque on the walls of the arteries of the heart thus narrowing them and hindering the flow of blood. Actually, it’s a lesser known fact that cholesterol is actually vital to help building membranes, manufacturing of bile, cell walls, nerve sheaths and the production of hormones. Nevertheless, high amounts of cholesterol, particularly LDLs may lead to high blood pressure, heart disease and other cardio vascular disorders.
Many doctors will prescribe statins these days, particularly if a patient is particularly at risk of heart disease, but the natural way is to follow a diet for cholesterol lowering as well as taking regular exercise.
You can start to lower your cholesterol by reducing alcohol intake and switching from high fat spreads, yoghurts, cheeses and milk to the low fat varieties. If this doesn’t work, you may need to cut out cheese, yoghurt and spread altogether.
Forget butter and lard but use olive oil, rapeseed oil, corn oil or vegetable oil instead. However, you should avoid frying altogether if possible, unless you use a dry pan or griddle with just a fine mist of oil on the food.
Eat plenty of fibre rich fruit and vegetables and complex carbohydrates such as wholemeal bread and pasta, brown rice, couscous, etc. High fibre foodstuffs will reduce the LDL cholesterol.
People say that items such as eggs, avocadoes, prawns and offal are high in cholesterol. This is true, but what they don’t know is that these foods cannot raise the cholesterol of a human, so actually the good they do far outweighs the harm.
Avoid cakes, biscuits, pizza, chips and fries. In fact, avoid any pre-packaged food if you can. If not, then do check the fat content before you buy.
Don’t compensate for lack of fat with sweet, fizzy drinks as the sugar content will do your health no good at all and will rot your teeth. Instead, drink lots of water; you can put a squeeze of fresh lemon or lime juice into it to improve the flavour. Fresh fruit juices that you’ve squeezed yourself are okay too but don’t add sugar. Keep strong coffee to a minimum as this can increase cholesterol.
Follow this diet for cholesterol lowering and you should be able to avoid taking pills for the rest of your life, but don’t forget to get a check every three months so that you can monitor your progress.