Take a moment and think about high cholesterol. What comes to mind? You may be picturing fatty, greasy foods and heart trouble. You’re right. Nearly 1/3 of American adults have high cholesterol. Cholesterol is a wavy, fat-like substance found in all your cells, and it can tell you a whole lot about your future heart health. Among other things, having high cholesterol can double your risk for heart disease—the leading cause of death—so it’s critical to take steps for prevention and treatment.
The good news is that there are a variety of strategies that you can use to lower your high cholesterol and therefore decrease your risk for heart problems and strokes.
If your cholesterol is creeping upward, we have 4 simple, yet effective, tips for naturally lowering high cholesterol.
1. Exercise. Enough Said.
Get up and move! Exercising at least 30 minutes a day is enough to lower high cholesterol. Moderate physical activity helps to raise high-density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol, which is the “good” cholesterol. Try taking a walk during your lunch hour, riding your bike, going for a hike, swimming or playing your favorite sport. Whatever you can do to get physical!
2. Be a Picky Eater
Making some simple changes to your diet can lower high cholesterol and improve your heart health. Here are some heart-healthy foods to try today:
- Eliminate trans fats
- Pick healthier fats
- Eat foods rich in omega-3 fatty acids
- Stay clear of saturated fats
- Eat more foods full of fiber, fresh fruits, vegetables and whole grains
- Check out these 12 foods that lower cholesterol naturally
3. Get Good, Quality, Solid Sleep.
Sleep is essential for healing your body, your overall health and maintaining balanced blood sugar.
4. Take a Chill Pill
When you get stressed out, your cholesterol can go through the roof. Take a deep breath. Relax. Chill out. Meet a friend for coffee or lunch, get lost in a good book or take out your yoga mat. Taking the time for relaxing activities will help keep your high cholesterol in check.
Make these simple changes to lower your high cholesterol and you’ll see a lasting positive effect on your overall health and wellness.
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