Diet can play an important role in lowering your cholesterol. Here are five foods that can lower your cholesterol and protect your heart.
Can a bowl of oatmeal help lower your cholesterol? How about a handful of walnuts or even a baked potato topped with some heart-healthy margarine? A few simple tweaks to your diet — like these, along with exercise and other heart-healthy habits — may be helpful in lowering your cholesterol. 1. Oatmeal, oat bran and high-fiber foods
Oatmeal contains soluble fiber, which reduces your low-density lipoprotein (LDL), the “bad,” cholesterol. Soluble fiber is also found in such foods as kidney beans, apples, pears, barley and prunes. 2. Fish and omega-3 fatty acids
Eating fatty fish can be heart healthy because of its high levels of omega-3 fatty acids, which can reduce your blood pressure and risk of developing blood clots. In people who have already had heart attacks, fish oil — or omega-3 fatty acids — reduces the risk of sudden death. 3. Walnuts, almonds and other nuts
Walnuts, almonds and other nuts can reduce blood cholesterol. Rich in polyunsaturated fatty acids, walnuts also help keep blood vessels healthy. 4. Olive oil
Olive oil contains a potent mix of antioxidants that can lower your “bad” (LDL) cholesterol but leave your “good” (HDL) cholesterol untouched. 5. Foods with added plant sterols or stanols
Foods are now available that have been fortified with sterols or stanols — substances found in plants that help block the absorption of cholesterol.
Margarines, orange juice and yogurt drinks with added plant sterols can help reduce LDL cholesterol by more than 10 percent.
Although fatty liver can be caused by regularly drinking too many alcoholic beverages, the high prevalence of fatty liver in modern society is unrelated to alcohol consumption, and it can progress to a metabolic disorder called nonalcoholic fatty liver disease, or NAFLD. Fatty liver is an excessive accumulation of triglycerides and cholesterol in your liver. The amount of cholesterol in your diet has very little bearing on the development of fatty liver, but a fatty liver can raise the triglyceride and low-density lipoprotein cholesterol levels in your blood. Estimates indicate that 20 to 30 percent of the adult population in the United States may have a fatty liver or NAFLD. The disorder can begin to develop in early childhood. If you have Type 2 diabetes, there is a 50 percent chance that you have too much fat in your liver, and if you are overweight with excess fat around your waist, your likelihood of having fatty liver is 75 percent. The best way to detect fatty liver is through a liver biopsy. Fatty liver is often associated with excess belly fat, also called abdominal fat. Triglycerides in your abdominal fatty tissues can be recycled to your liver and contribute to fat content. People with fatty liver usually have high blood triglycerides, low high-density lipoprotein cholesterol and elevated levels of small, dense LDLs and LDL cholesterol. Too much liver fat and this type of blood lipid profile is strongly associated with Type 2 diabetes, and it is a feature of insulin resistance.
In today’s world, millions of people are walking around with high cholesterol levels. For many people, it’s very hard to know when they have cholesterol problems since there are not many high cholesterol symptoms. There have been times in which some people have died from a heart attack due to the lack of high cholesterol symptoms. Being able to detect high cholesterol is usually very hard for most people, which is the reason doctors advice their patients to get their cholesterol levels checked. As mentioned by The American Heart Association, it is recommended for every person 20 years and up to get a cholesterol test in order to stay on top of cholesterol control. Having the cholesterol test results at hand is a very good cholesterol control measure. Additionally, having those test results can be vital when one is in an emergency and no high cholesterol symptoms are present.
For some people, being able to tell when they have high cholesterol is somewhat of an easy task since they tend to get chest pain quite often. The few that get chest pain, right away know it’s one of the most common high cholesterol symptoms, and at some point decide to pay their doctor a visit. For other people it’s hard knowing when they have high cholesterol since none of the symptoms are present. For the group that doesn’t get any high cholesterol symptoms, it’s always a good idea to keep a healthy diet in order to stay on top of cholesterol control. In addition, another good way to stay on top of cholesterol control is to take multivitamins and be physically active. High cholesterol is responsible for causing a person’s arteries to fill up with fat deposits, which in turn cause blood flow to diminish. Considering this, being physically active becomes a very good way to stay on top of cholesterol control. The best way for staying physically active is to always run whenever time is available, which in turn help by making the heart stronger and less vulnerable to heart attacks.
Statins are a class of medicines that are frequently used to lower blood cholesterol levels. The drugs are able to block the action of a chemical in the liver that is necessary for making cholesterol.
Although cholesterol is necessary for normal cell and body function, very high levels of it can lead to atherosclerosis, a condition where cholesterol-containing plaques build up in arteries and block blood flow. By reducing blood cholesterol levels, statins lower the risk of chest pain (angina), heart attack, and stroke. Several types of statins exist such as atorvastatin, cerivastatin, fluvastatin, lovastatin, mevastatin, pitavastatin, pravastatin, rosuvastatin, and simvastatin. Atorvastatin and rosuvastatin are the most potent, while fluvastatin is the least potent. These medicines are sold under several different brand names including Lipitor (an atorvastatin), Pravachol (a pravastatin), Crestor (a rosuvastatin), Zocor (a simvastatin), Lescol (a fluvastatin) and Vytorin (a combination of simvastatin and ezetimibe). Mevastatin is a naturally occurring statin that is found in red yeast rice.
Clogged arteries may lead to atherosclerosis, buildup of fats in and on your artery walls (plaques), which can restrict blood flow. If these plaques burst, you can get blood clots in your veins. To reduce the accumulation of plaque in your arteries and veins we invite you to follow the next tips: 1-Stop smoking immediately and get exercise most days of the week. Smoking damages your blood vessels and makes it harder for you to exercise. Exercise will help your blood circulation and help your body develop new blood vessels, thereby reducing the pressure on your already clogged vessels until these unclog. Engage in muscle-strengthening exercises such as push-ups, squats and sit-ups, in addition to cardiovascular exercise such as jogging, biking, walking, stair climbing and swimming. 2-Eat a healthy diet. Avoid hydrogenated fats, processed meals and bars, salty and sugary foods and all white-flour baked goods. Fruit, vegetables, water, nuts, whole-grain products and lean meats and fish should be the main staples of your diet. Cherries, strawberries, garlic, spinach, wild salmon, olive oil, green tea and sweet potatoes will help unclog your arteries naturally. 3-Lose weight and maintain your weight. If you’re overweight, losing as few as 5 to 10 pounds can help reduce your risk of high blood pressure and high cholesterol, two of the major risk factors for developing atherosclerosis. 4-Ask your doctor about drugs to help unclog your arteries. Medications lowering bad cholesterol–low-density lipoprotein — and boasting the good kind–high-density lipoprotein–are available, in addition to anti-platelet medications, which will reduce your chances of developing blood clots in your veins. 5-Consider surgery if your arteries remain clogged. Choices include angioplasty, bypass surgery, thrombolytic therapy and endarterectomy.
These four super-foods increase your levels of high-density lipoprotein (HDL) or “good cholesterol,” which will help lower your risk for heart disease Salmon
HDL rose four percent in adults who ate two 115-gram servings of salmon a week for four weeks, according to a Loma Linda University study. Eggs
Adults who ate an egg every day for 12 weeks increased HDL as much as 48 percent, according to a study from Thailand. Why? They have tons of lecithin. Dark chocolate
A study found that 100 grams of dark chocolate daily raises HDL by nine percent. That’s 550 calories; luckily, 15 grams helps too, say researchers. Berries
They needn’t be fresh, just plentiful: HDL levels rose five percent when adults ate about a cup (250 mL) of frozen berries a day for eight weeks.
Dietary fiber is found exclusively in plant foods. It serves as the structural framework in plants and is one of the most abundant compounds in nature. Fiber is the part of the plant that is not broken down in the intestines by human digestive enzymes. Because it is not digested, fiber is not absorbed in the body. (Bacteria in the intestines can ferment soluble fiber, changing it to short-chain fatty acids that are absorbed, but in general, fiber itself is neither digested nor absorbed.) Fruits, vegetables, whole-grain breads and cereals, nuts, and legumes (such as dried beans, lentils, and peas) are all sources of fiber in the diet. Fiber is beneficial for a number of reasons. It helps improve intestinal health, prevents heart disease and some cancers, reduces blood pressure, regulates blood sugar, and aids in weight control.
Pomegranate juice is a nutrient-dense beverage containing high concentrations of antioxidants, particularly vitamin C and polyphenols. Pomegranate juice slows down or prevents buildup of arterial plaque based on studies in test tubes, animals and humans, yet there is not any solid evidence it may clean your arteries. However, the fruit juice can be dangerous when taken with certain medications. Consult your doctor about drinking pomegranate juice to clean your arteries.
Lowering your blood levels of LDL-cholesterol, the “bad” cholesterol, may reduce the risk of atherosclerosis. The polyphenols in pomegranate juice may inhibit oxidation of LDL cholesterol and reduce progression of atherosclerosis in your coronary arteries.
Drinking pomegranate juice increases your caloric intake, is costly and elevates your risk of side effects. You may need to drink 16 oz. or more of pomegranate juice daily, which equates to almost 300 calories, to receive significant cardiovascular benefits. Pomegranate juice may increase your risk of rhabdomyolysis if taken with statin medication to lower cholesterol.
Heart disease occurs when arteries of the cardiovascular system become blocked with fat and plaque. No herbs or dietary supplements have been shown to dissolve and clean away all of the fat that might be in your arteries. A number of herbs, however, can reduce some of the plaque in your arteries, veins and capillaries and can also lower blood pressure to improve heart health. Hawthorn- Is a thorny shrub plant with small red berries. Extracts from the hawthorn plant have been used to treat heart disease for many centuries. Hawthorn benefits the heart and circulatory system as it helps to decrease blood pressure while strengthening heart muscle. Garlic- Regular use of aged garlic extracts may help to clean out your arteries and reduce your chances of developing coronary heart disease. Bilberry- Is a berry fruit similar to blueberry that is rich in heart-health chemicals known as anthocyanosides. Anthocyanosides can act as antioxidants to protect arteries and veins from hardening and clogging.. Olive Leaf- We often hear that olive oil is a heart healthy source of fat, however, we rarely hear about the leaves of the olive plant that can also benefit cardiovascular health. Extracts of the olive plant leaf are rich in compounds called oleuropeins which also act as vasodilators to relax blood vessels and increase blood flow through arteries.