Easy Ways To Lower Your Cholesterol

Photo Credit: National Institutes of Health PD
If you have been diagnosed with high cholesterol, you may be at risk of heart disease. Medications can help to reduce your cholesterol, but you still need to make some lifestyle and diet changes to lower your cholesterol and keep it down. Your body needs some cholesterol. The HDL cholesterol is the “good” cholesterol that helps keep the LDL or “bad” cholesterol in check. HDL cholesterol removes LDL cholesterol from your blood before it can adhere to the walls of your arteries and veins as plaque. Changing your diet can boost your HDL cholesterol levels and lower your LDL even more. 
Measure your portions. Avoid the super-sized meals or avoid fast food altogether. Super-sized meals are usually twice the amount of food that you actually need. Fast food, especially if you order the super portions, can contribute to weight gain, which can lead to obesity and high blood pressure. More than a handful is too much. Use the palm of your hand to gauge the size of one portion. One serving of fish or beef or potatoes should fit in the palm of your hand. One serving of fresh fruit or berries is about the size of your fist. You can fit one serving of cooked pasta, rice, beans and vegetables will fit in your cupped hand. 
Make half of your plate fruits and vegetables to help lower your LDL cholesterol. Try to eat a minimum of 5 servings of fruits and vegetables every day. Fruits and vegetables are a good source of fiber and are loaded with vitamins and minerals. Most fruits and vegetables also provide antioxidants that help prevent cell damage from free radicals. 
Begin your day with a healthy breakfast that includes whole grains, such as wheat toast, whole grain muffins and oatmeal. Whole grains contain plenty of fiber and complex carbohydrates for energy. You will feel fuller longer when you eat whole grains. Whole grains also reduce the LDL in the blood to lower your “bad” cholesterol. Include some brown rice, barley, whole wheat pasta and breads and some whole grain crackers in your diet to feel full and lower your LDL cholesterol. 

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