Cholesterol is a silent foe of your body. We can only function normally at standard levels of cholesterol, but a slight increase in cholesterol level in the blood is a silent killer, making us vulnerable to heart attack and stroke
What is cholesterol?
Cholesterol is a category of lipids (fat), which is found in some plants and body cells. It is known for its risk of causing heart diseases and stroke. It’s important functions in the body is that it is a building block of the cell membrane and it is used to process hormones, helps in making digestive bile acids and vitamin D in our bodies.
Increased level in the blood, leads to the formation of plaque in the blood arteries, making them narrow and reducing the blow capacity. This can result to blood clotting in the vessels leading to heart attack and in case of blood clotting in the brain arteries it leads to stroke.
Cholesterol is in oil form hence it cannot mix with blood; it is carried around the body by lipoproteins.
What increases cholesterol in the body?
Hypercholesterolemia is caused by increased level of LDL in the blood vessels.
High cholesterol level in the body is also associated with the following,
- Liver and kidney complications
- Ineffective thyroid glands
Lowering cholesterol level
Cholesterol level can be addressed on how to manage your cholesterol through diet and exercise The two are,
Daily exercise is a key step in bringing your cholesterol level down, this will be whether you are overweight or not. Consider walking, riding a bike, swimming in the morning, engaging in sports activities and jogging. It is also advisable to take stairs to work instead of the lift or elevator.
Your daily diet should focus on intake of less fat in your system. These eating tips will help in your endeavor to lower cholesterol.
- a) Go for healthier fats
Red meat and dairy products has a lot of saturated fats, which will increase your cholesterol level in the body. Eat lean meat, low fat dairy products and the mono saturated fat found in olive, peanut and the canola oil.
- b) Eat a lot of whole grains
Whole grains have nutrients critical in the body, which are good for the heart. They include whole bread, brown rice, whole-wheat pasta and maize
- c) Reduce intake of food with high cholesterol
Be keen on eating egg yolk, whole milk products and the organ meat. They will be increasing the level to risky levels
- d) Increase intake of fruits and vegetables and eat food rich in omega 3 fatty acids, mostly fish such as salmon