Cholesterol is very important for the body. Cholesterol is made in the liver and performs many important functions. It helps keep cell walls flexible, as well as it is needed to make some hormones. But like anything in the body, too much cholesterol can cause a number of problems. Cholesterol does not dissolve in water but moves around the body. For this, cholesterol depends on molecules called lipoproteins. Lipoproteins carry cholesterol in the blood.
There are two types of lipoproteins, they include LDL and HDL. These two have different effects on health. High levels of LDL cholesterol accumulate in the walls of blood vessels. That's why LDL is called bad cholesterol.
- Monounsaturated Fat
Monounsaturated fat comes in healthy fat. It can be effective in lowering cholesterol levels. Monounsaturated fat is effective in increasing HDH and reducing LDL. This fat can also reduce the oxidation of cholesterol. Olive oil, almonds, cashews, canola oil, avocado, nut butter, and olives are good sources of monounsaturated fat.
- Polyunsaturated Fat
Polyunsaturated fats reduce LDL (bad) cholesterol levels, thereby reducing the risk of heart disease. Not only this, polyunsaturated fat can also reduce the risk of metabolic syndrome and type 2 diabetes. Especially omega 3 fatty acids are necessary for cholesterol. Salmon, saltwater fish, tuna, and shrimp are high in omega 3s. Apart from this, flax seeds and peanuts are also good sources of omega 3.
- Avoid Trans Fat
Trans fats raise cholesterol levels, or LDL, and lower HDL, which can harm our heart health. That's why you should completely avoid trans fats. It is also harmful to overall health.
- Eat More Fiber
Beneficial bacteria living in the intestines can digest soluble fiber. It needs it for its nutrition. Fiber is good for heart health. It can help reduce LDL levels. Oat grains, beans, lentils, Brussels sprouts, fruits, peas, etc. are high in fiber.
Exercising is essential for overall health. It not only improves physical fitness, it also helps in combating obesity. Exercising also improves heart health. It also reduces bad cholesterol ie LDL. Also exercising helps boost HDL.
- Maintain a Healthy Weight
Being overweight or obese can reduce the risk of high cholesterol levels. If you are overweight, you can lower your cholesterol level. Losing weight helps in lowering the levels of total cholesterol and LDL or bad cholesterol.
You can try these methods to keep your HDL and LDL cholesterol levels under control. But in case of high cholesterol levels, definitely contact the doctor.