There’s good cholesterol and there’s bad cholesterol, but this isn’t a lesson in what’s what when it comes to cholesterol. Instead, you will learn some of the ways you can increase your good and reduce your bad cholesterol. If you need some convincing as to why you’d want to, keep reading.
One of the biggest issues with high cholesterol is that it can cause heart disease, and other heart disease related illnesses. Really, it affects every system of your body in some way. It can damage your kidneys and liver and more. All the more reason to control it.
Eat Your Vegetables:
What you eat always has a huge effect on your health, which is why it’s recommended that you fill your plate one-third full of vegetables. Pick veggies of all colors. Eat them raw, steamed, cooked, whatever.
Take some time to learn about your veggies and what ones contain what vitamins. It’s good to know about the food you eat. Knowing the health benefits of your favorite vegetables will also help remind you to eat them!
Make Heart Healthy Meal Choices:
Don’t just eat your vegetables, of course. You need to make sure you are following the recommended foods from the USDA. Get lean meats, whole grains, fruits, and even low- and no-fat dairy options.
When you crave junk food, remember that those are the foods that are more likely to raise your bad cholesterol, so replace them with fresh or dried fruits and vegetables. Or even some butter and salt free air-popped popcorn, which is an excellent snack. Too plain? Use a little olive or coconut oil and a pinch of sea salt.
Get Some More Exercise:
Even a small amount overweight can be a factor in higher bad cholesterol, and if you are obese you are really at risk. Exercise is great for stress relief, weight loss, and overall health and wellness.
The ideal plan is to get a half an hour of exercise every day of the week. You don’t need to run every day, or do 100 jumping jacks every day, but even mild or moderate fitness daily is good. And if you do need a day off, take it!
Kick Your Bad Habits:
Smoking hinders your good cholesterol, so stop smoking if you are a smoker. Since it does so many other harmful things to your body this is just one more on the list of good reasons to get motivated to be a quitter.
While you don’t need to kick alcohol completely, moderation is key. It seems that some drinking can be good for your HDL (good) cholesterol, so a glass of wine with a meal or a beer out with your friends, can actually be good for you.