10 Steps to lowering your cholesterol (without drugs)

Article by Elise Matthews

Click here to download the infographic

Research has shown up to a 33% reduction in LDL cholesterol by changing your type of eating style alone.  That being said.  It takes work to lower your cholesterol via diet.  Let me rephrase that… It takes work, a moderate amount of self-discipline, and consistency to lower your cholesterol via diet.  But it does work.  Here’s the protocol.

  1. Get lean and stay there.

–       You know whether you are lean or not, the mirror will tell you so.  If you are looking for a number.  Men, shoot for 13- 15% and ladies shoot for 22-25%.  At these relatively easy to maintain ranges you are much less at risk of needing prescriptions.

  1. Load up on fruits and veggies daily

–       Minimum 10 servings per day of cholesterol lowering fruits and veggies.  If you are working on step 1, shoot for an 80 vegetable/20 fruit ratio.

  1. Eat whole grains daily

–       At least 1 cup per day shows in research to lower the plaque build up in your arteries.  We mean non-processed whole grains like steel cut oats, millet, quinoa, brown rice, etc.

  1. Eat legumes daily.

–       At least 1 cup per day of fiber rich legumes like beans and lentils.  The fiber binds to cholesterol in the digestive tract.

  1. Eat nuts and seeds daily.

–       At least 1/3 cup of nuts / seeds.  Go for raw nuts, flax seeds, pumpkin seeds, and chia seeds.

  1. Eat/supplement with Omega 3s daily

–       Foods high in omega 3 fats have been reported to reduce LDL levels. Mackerel, cod liver oil,  walnuts, chia seeds, salmon, tuna, and sardines are good sources of omega 3s.

  1. Exercise regularly.

–       At least 5 hours per week, break a sweat.  A variety of strength training, conditioning, and mobility/ flexibility exercises is recommended.  Regular exercise is one of the few ways to boost your HDL levels!

  1. Spice up your foods.

–       Ginger, garlic, curcumin, and cocoa are great spices to use to further improve your ratios.

  1. Limit processed foods, trans fats, meat, dairy, and alcohol.

–       When eating meat, choose grass-fed, organic and avoid at all costs factory raised.  Maximize your results by minimizing or eliminating trans fats, processed foods, alcohol and dairy.

  1. Drink tea

–       4 cups/day.  Tea has shown to be helpful in lowering blood cholesterol and plaque build up in the arteries.  Coffee drinker?  Reduce your caffeine intake to reduce your cholesterol.


Credits: Ryan Andrews / Precision Nutrition (About Cholesterol)

 

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