Cholesterol is an important biomolecule used by the body to maintain the integrity of cell membranes and synthesize several hormones. Cholesterol in excess of the body’s needs, however, tends to build up in the bloodstream with a variety of adverse consequences. The typical western diet includes far more cholesterol than the body requires, the result is that heart disease is among the leading causes of preventable death.
Atherosclerosis, also sometimes called arteriosclerosis, is a hardening of the arteries caused by the buildup of cholesterol, or plaque, on interior arterial walls. Hardened arteries are less capable of withstanding the high blood pressure normally produced by a heartbeat, meaning that hardened arteries can crack and tear.
Further, hardened arteries are also frequently more narrow compared to their healthy counterparts; as plaques build up in the vessels, they reduce arterial diameter and, therefore, restrict blood flow, which can cause oxygen deprivation of cells.
The higher an individual’s so-called “bad” cholesterol, the higher his risk of heart attacks, according to the National Heart Lung and Blood Institute. “Bad” cholesterol, also called LDL, is a measure of how much cholesterol the body is taking up from the digestive tract relative to the amount of cholesterol the cells require.
If cholesterol intake far exceeds cellular needs, LDL levels will be high. Heart attack is the result of built up cholesterol in the arteries, blocking blood flow to the heart’s own cells, leading to oxygen starvation of the heart muscles. This causes portions of the heart wall to die, which can badly compromise the organ’s ability to function.
Stroke is another risk of excess cholesterol. It’s the result of oxygen deprivation of brain cells, which is a potential complication of high blood cholesterol and hardened arteries. If the arteries are diseased and tear under pressure, they bleed. This causes formation of blood clots, or small scabs, within the arteries themselves.
The clots then break away and travel through the bloodstream until they reach a vessel too small to pass through, explains the National Stroke Association. If the vessel in question happens to be in the brain, the clot prevents blood from reaching the part of the brain fed by that vessel. The resulting oxygen deprivation causes a portion of the brain to die.
Depending upon the location of the clot, stroke can result in loss of speech, movement, sensation, memory, or can even lead to death.
List of foods to lower cholesterol levels
Foods can play a major role in lowering your cholesterol. Foods to lower cholesterol will help lower your harmful cholesterol levels, not your beneficial cholesterol level.
Foods that can help lower cholesterol also improve your overall cardiovascular health, thereby being termed heart-healthy foods. Eating these foods can lower your chances of needing cholesterol-lowering medications.
Most varieties of nuts contain beneficial amounts of heart-healthy polyunsaturated fats. Polyunsaturated fats can help keep your blood vessels operating properly by lowering your harmful cholesterol levels. This decreases the risk of developing heart disease. Beneficial nuts include pecans, almonds, hazelnuts, pistachios and walnuts. Eat a serving size of 40gram, the equivalent of a handful, to help your cholesterol level.
Replace foods high in saturated fat with nuts to assist in weight control. Choose unsalted, blanched varieties of these heart-healthy nuts. Use nuts instead of croutons and/or cheese in salads. Remember that nuts contain large amounts of calories and fat, so monitor your consumption.
Fatty fish contain many nutrients known for lowering cholesterol. Fatty fish, classified as heart-healthy food, contain rich amounts of omega-3 fatty acids. These acids can lower your harmful cholesterol while increasing your beneficial cholesterol levels.
Omega-3 fatty acids can also lower triglycerides levels, improve your blood pressure level, help stabilize heart rhythms and reduce arterial inflammation. Take fish oil capsules to help lower cholesterol, if you do not like fish. Prepare fish in a heart-healthy manner such as steaming, baking or poaching for best cholesterol-lowering results. Fatty fish include salmon, sardines, mackerel, herring, albacore tuna, lake trout and halibut. Eat fish at least twice weekly to help your cardiovascular health.
Olives and olive oil contain rich amounts of antioxidants known as polyphenols. These antioxidants that help lower harmful cholesterol while leaving your good cholesterol intact. Polyphenols also decrease blood vessel inflammation, improving both your triglyceride and cholesterol levels.
Olives also contain monounsaturated fat, a fat classified as heart-healthy. Choose extra virgin olive oil, the least processed of all oil varieties, which contains the greatest amounts of polyphenols to help your cholesterol.
Oats contain heart-healthy soluble fiber that serves a cholesterol dual purpose. The soluble fiber in oats can lower both your harmful and total cholesterol levels. Soluble fiber reduces the amount of cholesterol absorbed into your bloodstream. The fiber assists in removing cholesterol plaque from arterial walls.
Remember to drink plenty of water to help the fiber pass through your body. Help your cholesterol level by eating a bowl of cooked oatmeal or oat bran, boxed oat cereal or using oats as a whole grain instead of potatoes in your meal plan.
Try to avoid Sugar
It is a well-known fact that sugar causes triglyceride levels to increase, which elevate total cholesterol levels. Cutting sugar intake can also help to decrease your cholesterol levels.
Supplement to lower high cholesterol levels
The Manna Cholesterol Support were formulated with well researched ingredients and proved to lower even the toughest cholesterol levels without any side effect.