Best Ways To Increase The Good Cholesterol !
22-08-2017 | Posted By: Rajni Joshi | 976 View(s)
Cholesterol?? What are you talking about? Are you seriously going to talk about the ways to increase cholesterol? Cholesterol is so bad for our health, why do we need to increase it? No, we are not saying this, but many of you probably think of bad or high cholesterol when hearing the word “cholesterol”. Well, For those who feel so, let us tell you that there’s also a type of good cholesterol that your body needs, I.e., High-Density Lipoprotein or HDL Cholesterol is a waxy, soft fat that is needed by your body to function properly. Now, what is this bad and good cholesterol? Most of the people remain confused between these two.Let’s discuss!
HDL is referred to as the good cholesterol as having high HDL levels helps carry cholesterol from the arteries to the liver, where it can be used or excreted. High levels of HDL also has antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effects and is linked to a reduced risk of heart problems and diseases. High-Density Lipoprotein is like a vacuum cleaner for cholesterol in the body. Why should it be at healthy levels in your blood? Here’s the answer! It should be at healthy levels because it removes extra cholesterol and plaque buildup in the arteries and then sends it to the liver and the liver expels it from the body. All this ultimately helps reduce the risk of heart disease, heart attack and stroke.However, LDL or Low-Density Lipoprotein is the type of cholesterol you should keep in check as it is the bad kind of cholesterol. What you can do is, go for a Lipid profile test! What is this Lipid Profile test now? You do not need to be confused; we are here with everything you need to know!
What is Lipid Profile Test?
A Lipid Profile Test is a complete cholesterol test, and your doctor can use this tool to measure the amount of “bad” and “good” cholesterol and triglycerides (a type of fat) in your blood. Let’s have a look at this Cholesterol Reading Classification for better understanding.
<100 is optimal
100-129 is near-optimal
130-159 is borderline high
160-189 is high
190 or greater than 190 is very high
Here, if your test shows, the amount of LDL Cholesterol is less than 100, then it’s optimal. If it’s between 100-129, it’s somewhere near optimal. It’s borderline high between 130-159, 160-189 is high. Lastly, if your test shows the LDL cholesterol 190 or greater than 190, then you are at risk and have crossed the initial stages.
Most of the experts suggest minimum blood levels of 40 mg/dl in men and 50 mg/dl in women.
<200 is desirable
200-239 is borderline high
240 or greater than 240 is high
Here, the amount of total cholesterol should be less than 200 and if it’s somewhere between 200-239, it’s borderline high. Lastly, if your test shows the amount of total cholesterol is greater than 240, it’s high, and you need to do something immediately to help yourself.
<150 is optimal
150-199 is borderline high
200-499 is high
500 or greater than 500 is very high
It clearly says, ideally the amount of triglycerides in your body should be less than 150. Now, 150-199 is borderline high, and 200-499 is high. If it’s 500 or greater than 500, it’s very high.
So, it is very important to know about the amount of cholesterol in your body. You can Visit your Doctor to check if it’s under control or not.
Ways To Increase The Good Cholesterol – High-Density Lipoprotein (HDL)
Physical activity and exercise are very important to keep your heart in good health. Studies suggest that you can actually raise your High-Density lipoprotein cholesterol by including many different types of exercises in your daily routine which involves strength training, aerobic exercise and high-intensity exercise.Physical inactivity is the cause of various heart problems, and you should always stay physically active if you want to help your heart. Research also suggests if you practice high- intensity exercise, you can help increase the good cholesterol in your body.
Let’s discuss another small study which involved women with polycystic ovary syndrome or PCOS, which is linked to a greater risk of insulin resistance. Under this study, these women were supposed to perform high-intensity exercises thrice a week. The outcomes were beyond imaginations! Their efforts led to an increase in High-Density Lipoprotein cholesterol of 8 mg/dl after ten weeks. Improvements in other health markers, including improved arterial function and decreased insulin resistance, were also shown in these women.
In another 12 week study, overweight men were required to perform high-intensity exercise and they experienced a 10 % increase in HDL cholesterol. On the other hand, overweight men who performed low- intensity exercise showed only a 2 % increase in HDL cholesterol.Even lower- intensity exercise seems to increase HDL’s antioxidant and anti-inflammatory capacities but no significant change in the HDL levels.
All in all, we would recommend you to exercise daily, try performing high- intensity exercises but do not just try out all the exercises in one go. If you do not exercise regularly, your body will take some time to get used to exercises. Go for low- intensity exercises first and then start including some high- intensity exercises gradually.
2. Add olive oil to your Diet
Your heart will love this! Some healthy changes are good, and you should definitely make them as soon as possible. Olive oil is just amazing for your heart as it contains heart-healthy fat which can increase your HDL and can also lower the inflammatory impact of LDL or the bad cholesterol in your body. You can use the oil in sauces, salad dressings, and you can use it to flavour foods once they’re cooked. You can also sprinkle some chopped olives on the salad or just add them to your favourite soups! One thing to keep in mind is, use this food in moderation as it’s high in calories.
3. Eat Whole Grains
Bran, cereals, and brown or wild rice can give a boost to your Good Cholesterol or HDL levels because they contain fibre, mainly soluble fibre.
Try to have at least two servings of whole grains every day. Have a bowl of oatmeal in the morning, some whole grain bread at lunch and prepare something with brown rice. Do not just stick to these things, try to be creative, try out different dishes so that you can stick to this healthy stuff.
No poster, advertisement or even medication can help you get rid of this bad habit until and unless you do not want that to happen! But still, we’ll keep warning you. We’ll keep spreading the message to stop smoking. If you quit smoking, you can reduce the risk of lung cancer and heart diseases. One of its bad effects includes a suppression of HDL cholesterol.
A one-year study shows that people who quit smoking experienced twice the increase in HDL than those who didn’t.
Stop smoking to increase HDL levels, to improve its functions and most importantly to protect your heart!
5. Eat Beans And Legumes
Beans and legumes are also a rich source of soluble fibre just like whole grains. Try to eat more of black beans, black-eyed peas, navy beans, lentils, kidney beans and others.
6. Add Coconut Oil To Your Diet
Studies suggest that coconut oil may increase metabolic rate, reduce appetite and help protect brain health and heart health. Coconut oil can help raise HDL cholesterol more than any other types of fat.
In a study, the health effects of coconut oil on 40 women with excess belly fat were examined. The researchers got to know that women who consumed coconut oil daily experienced increased HDL cholesterol and lower LDL cholesterol. You can have two tsp (30 ml) of coconut oil every day to help increase HDL levels.
So, these are some of the ways to increase good cholesterol. I.e., High-Density Lipoprotein. Eat a balanced diet, try to be more active, avoid physical inactivity, eat healthy fats, avoid smoking and try to quit smoking as soon as possible. Include some high- density exercises in your routine, however, you can begin with some low- intensity exercises and can gradually step towards the high-intensity exercises. So, get set to witness an increase in your HDL cholesterol to stay Healthy and Fit.