Lifestyle Changes to Improve Your Cholesterol Levels and Avoid Heart Disease
High cholesterol increases your health risks significantly, putting you at a higher risk of serious conditions such as heart disease and stroke. Although there are many medications that can help to get a high cholesterol back down to a healthy level, it’s always better to prevent the need for this by focusing on the lifestyle changes that you can make instead. We’ve listed some of the best lifestyle changes to make to improve your cholesterol levels and reap a number of additional health benefits such as weight loss, better energy, and even a longer life.
Tip #1. Eat a Heart-Friendly Diet:
Even if you haven’t really been watching what you eat as well as you could in the past, it’s never too late to improve your diet. A few, simple changes to the foods that you consume on a daily basis can make a massive difference to your health and significantly reduce high cholesterol levels. If you are taking cholesterol medications, improving your diet could even mean that you eventually no longer have to take them. One of the best ways to improve your diet in terms of heart health is to eat healthier fats; avoid the saturated fats found in red meat and dairy products and instead fill up with healthier, monounsaturated fats that you can find in foods such as olive oil, avocado, and leaner cuts of meat. Adding more omega 3 fatty acids to your diet is also essential – you can find these in oily fish and hemp.
Tip #2. Increase Your Physical Activity:
Exercise, along with a balanced and healthy diet, is one of the best ways to reduce cholesterol levels. In addition, when you work out, you won’t just improve your heart health – your body will see a huge range of health benefits, including weight loss, muscle gain, better energy levels, improved sleep, and more. Even if this is going to be your first time working out for a while, there’s no need to worry – you don’t have to start off with a strenuous workout that’s going to take you a week to recover from! Starting slowly with just 10-30 minutes of gentle exercise, such as walking or swimming, each day can be the best way to get started.
Tip #3. Rethink Bad Habits:
If you are a smoker, this could well be contributing to your high cholesterol levels. The benefits of quitting smoking don’t end there, though – within just twenty minutes of your last cigarette, your blood pressure and heart rate will decrease and normalize; after six months, you will be able to cut your risk of heart disease in half. But, quitting smoking isn’t easy; it takes a lot of willpower and determination! If you need help to quit, it’s a good idea to speak to your doctor about the various nicotine replacement therapy products available to you, from e-cigarettes to nicotine patches.
High cholesterol levels can put you at a much higher risk of serious health problems. Thankfully, changing your lifestyle and habits can be the best way to get back in control.