Is your cholesterol any normal? Think twice before you answer this question. Levels of the artery-clogging substance often rise with age, and cardiologists say everyone 20 or older should be screened for high cholesterol at least once every five years, with more frequent screenings for anyone deemed to be at high risk for heart disease. If it’s been awhile since your last cholesterol screening, now is a good time to ask your doctor if you’re due for one. If your fasting total cholesterol level exceeds the desirable level of 200, or if your low-density lipoprotein cholesterol is not at your goal, getting it down to a safer level could be easier than you think. In fact, with simple lifestyle modifications and, if necessary, medicine, people often see significant reductions in cholesterol within six weeks. Here are few tips from the expert on how to cut cholesterol fast.
Fix a target:
Now that you know that you have to get your cholesterol number down, but you are thinking how exactly low do you need to go? This depends on various factors. These factors could include your personal and family history of heart disease, as well as whether you have cardiovascular risk factors, such as obesity, high blood pressure, diabetes, and smoking. If your risk is deemed high, most doctors will treat for a target LDL of less than 70 whereas if your risk is moderate, a target LDL of under 130 is generally good to go, but if your risk is low, like less than 160 is a reasonable target.
Lifestyle modifications make sense for anyone with elevated cholesterol. But if your cardiovascular risk is high, you may also need to take a cholesterol-lowering drug. The drug therapy is the only way which will help you cut cholesterol fast. All one has to do is quit smoking and losing weight.
In addition to lowering LDL “bad” cholesterol, regular physical activity can raise HDL “good” cholesterol by up to 10%. The benefits come even with moderate exercise, such as brisk walking. Doctors suggest their patients to go for a 45 minute walk right after supper. Take up any exercises you want but the special ingredient is to do it on a regular bases.
Avoid saturated fat:
Many doctors say that best way to cut cholesterol is to cut back on cholesterol rich food. But it is proved that dietary cholesterol is not the main culprit. The real culprit is the saturated fats that causes an increase in cholesterol. To kill or control the saturated fats, one should switch to smart fats like canola oil or olive oil for vegetable oil, butter, stick margarine, lard, or shortening while cutting back on meat and eating more fish.
Eat more fiber:
Fruits and vegetables, including whole grains, are good sources not only of heart-healthy antioxidants but also cholesterol-lowering dietary fiber. Soluble fibers are known to help in lowering the cholesterol level. It acts like a sponge and absorbs the cholesterol. Good sources of soluble fiber include dried beans, oats, and barley, as well as fiber products containing psyllium.
Fish and fish oil are chockablock with cholesterol-lowering omega-3 fatty acids. Fish oil supplements can have a profound effect on cholesterol and triglycerides. Plant sources of omega-3s include soybeans, canola, flaxseeds, walnuts, and their oils, but they don’t provide the same omega-3s as fish. The biggest heart benefits have been linked to omega-3s found in fish.
Go green tea:
Green tea is a healthier alternative to sodas and sugary beverages. Green tea contains compounds that can help lower LDL cholesterol