Secrets to Lower Cholesterol – Naturally!
Cholesterol is no bad thing, seriously! It is a natural substance produced by the liver that ensures the proper functioning of many organs and cells. Typically our bodies can keep cholesterol levels balanced, but unhealthy diet and lifestyle choices can throw things totally out of whack!
Before I get into the secrets of lowering your cholesterol naturally, let me tell you why I am so passionate about this particular topic.
Dr Sandy’s Story
About twenty-five years ago, I was told that I was going to have a sudden heart attack; the first symptom of which would be death.
I had six months to live.
Both sides of my family suffer with high cholesterol. This should have been on the first date questionnaire for my parents! I have lost many members of my family to sudden heart attacks between the ages of 40 and 42.
Side Note: your total cholesterol level divided by your HDL level, if balanced, should give you a number between 3.0 and 4.0. Anywhere between 8.0 and 12.0 is a huge red flag. Twenty-five years ago, mine was 46.1.
My physician told me I would need to be on statin drugs and beta-blockers for the rest of my life, but I knew this wouldn’t be enough to help me. So, encouraged by a doctor who shared with me some research based on diet and lifestyle, I started studying foods and nutrition like a second Ph.D. Now, let me teach you what I, and today’s researchers, know.
What You Need to Know:
There is good cholesterol, known as HDL, and bad cholesterol, known as LDL.
HDL is made up of light, fluffy particles and gives us the ability to cleanse vessels that are blocked up by LDL; a hard and dense cholesterol.
LDL creates plaque and blockages throughout the body, often in areas that have been damaged. Blood flow to these areas is decreased and can result in cardiovascular events such as strokes or coronary heart disease.
When LDL becomes oxidized, it can produce plaque more easily. Oxidation happens through exposure to environmental toxins such as pesticides or other chemicals.
To find out more about the prevalence of toxins in our environment and ways to combat exposure, take a look at our Detox blog post
Ideally, what we want is higher levels of the fluffy HDL and lower levels of the dense LDL.
Research is showing that in the near future, we will have access to injections that can raise our HDL levels and help our bodies cleanse vessels that are blocked by LDL plaque. In the meantime, though, I can let you in on some secrets to lower your cholesterol, naturally.
The Big Secret…
It’s all about food.
There’s no need to follow one particular diet or find yourself on the verge of a panic attack because you’ve deviated from the list of foods allowed. Just adding a few cholesterol-lowering foods into your diet can make a world of difference!
Veggies, veggies, veggies!
Veggies are awesome and should form the base of any diet intended to lower cholesterol. They are packed full of nutrients, so will lower your LDL, regulate your blood sugar and blood pressure, and they’re low in calories so they can boost weight loss.
I find, across the board, people do much better when they take in some good, healthy fats. Try a nut or seed oil that has been cold-pressed like olive oil, sesame seed oil, or avocado oil. All these oils are anti-inflammatory, healthy, unsaturated fats, and have been shown to reduce levels of LDL.
Key Tip – you want to stay away from inflammatory foods i.e., trans-fats, starches, and sugars. Inflammation is at the crux of many metabolic diseases.
Find foods that are high in these gorgeous healthy oils like nuts. Cashews, almonds, pecans, and brazil nuts are just a few. So eat them out of the jar, sprinkle them on a salad, or spread them on toast.
If I mention any food that you know doesn’t sit well with you, cross it off the list. Get to know your own body and listen to it!
Fight Fire with Fiber!
Fiber isn’t the tastiest sounding topic when it comes to nutrition, but I find this to be the number one thing to lower cholesterol – increase your fiber intake!
You will find fiber in vegetables, nuts, seeds, oats, rice, supplements, and you want the widest range possible. The more varied your fiber intake is, the more diverse your gut bacteria will be. The diversity of gut bacteria has everything to do with heart health and plaque production.
A decrease in heart health has been directly linked to inflammation. Inflammation has been directly linked to our sugar intake. For every 1g of fiber you take in, 1g of sugar will be completely erased from your body. This does wonders for stabilizing blood sugar and cholesterol.
I know, I know, a dirty word for many. But don’t panic.
The body is designed to move, and any movement will alter your blood chemistry. So find the kind of movement puts a smile on your face – what’s the point if you’re not happy?
What’s the alternative?
As I said, cholesterol is no bad thing. There are risks attached to lowering your cholesterol too much: muscle pain, degradation of nerves, dizziness, or cognitive impairment such as memory loss.
Studies of statin drugs have shown that lowering cholesterol by way of medication can cause these symptoms as well as increased instances of depression, cancer, and inflammatory issues.
There has been a huge increase in the rates at which these drugs are being prescribed. In the UK, across one year, the sale of Lipitor went from 1000 prescriptions to 31000 prescriptions in the same area.
This is scary and unnecessary.
There are many changes you can make, as simple as those I have shared with you, to avoid the use of statin drugs and lower your cholesterol safely and naturally.
Now You Know…
- Cholesterol is no bad thing
- Statin drugs can lower your cholesterol too much and cause many side effects
- We want high levels of HDL (good cholesterol) and lower levels of LDL (bad cholesterol)
- Lowering your cholesterol naturally is all about food!
Though the methods I have shared with you to help lower your cholesterol are safe for everyone, it may be that some of the foods I have mentioned disagree with you.
Each body is different – listen to yours by listening to my Secrets to Lower Cholesterol – Naturally!
- Book a free, fifteen-minute consultation to discuss your concerns and see how we might be able to help you achieve your health care goals.
- Check out the following Dr Sandy audio downloads: