How to raise HDL Cholesterol (good cholesterol)?
HDL cholesterol less than 35mg/dL is a risk factor, even if your total cholesterol is within limits. The first step in increasing high density lipoproteins cholesterol levels (and decreasing LDL/HDL ratios) is life style modification. When life style modifications are insufficient, medications are used. In prescribing medications or medication combinations, doctors have to take into account medication side effects as well as presence or absence of other abnormalities in cholesterol profiles.
Regular aerobic exercise, loss of excess weight (fat), and cessation of cigarette smoking cigarettes will increase HDL cholesterol levels. Regular alcohol consumption (such as one drink a day) will also raise high density lipoproteins cholesterol. However, there are different subclasses of HDL cholesterol which have varying degrees of effectiveness in preventing atherosclerosis. Alcohol is believed to increase the level of the less important subtype of HDL cholesterol. Because of other adverse health consequences of excessive alcohol consumption, alcohol is not recommended as a standard treatment for low high density lipoproteins cholesterol.
You can increase the level of HDL cholesterol by the following:
1. Foods that raise HDL cholesterol include onions,and omega-3 acids. soluble fibersEat half a raw onion a day raises HDL (good) cholesterol an average of 25 percent in most people with cholesterol problems.
2. Eat at least two servings of foods high in soluble fiber. Soluble fiber is found in whole grains, oats and oat bran, brown rice, fruits such as citrus fruit, apples, grapes, etc. and legumes & lentils. The soluble fiber raises HDL levels and helps lower total cholesterol. The wholegrain are also good source of linoleic acid.
3. Use oils higher in monounsaturated fats, such as canola or olive oil. It is found that monounsaturated fats raise HDL levels.
4. Increase your consumption of omega-3 fatty acids found in fish, cold-pressed flaxseed oil, safflower oil, sunflower oil, canola oil, dark green vegetables, etc.
5. Eat at least two servings of soya (phytoestrogens) products. Tofu, tempeh, and TVP (texturized vegetable protein) may help raise high density lipoproteins levels. Include at least two servings each day.
6. Avoid trans fatty acids i.e. hydrogenated oil or vegetable shortening. Choose a liquid or semisoft variety of margarine in your diet Trans fatty acids are found in and many fast foods and french fries, baked goods such as cookies, crackers and cakes. Remember, the softer the spread, the less trans fat it contains.
7. Avoid refined carbohydrates like sugar and refined flour. These have shown to raise blood cholesterol and triglycerides.
8. Avoid food sources of cholesterol such as egg yolk, liver, kidney, brains, etc.
9. Avoid high fat dairy products such as regular milk, cheese and cream.
10. Reduce alcohol intake. However, alcohol (wine or beer) in moderation may raise HDL levels. However, if your do not drink, don't start to raise high density lipoproteins, it is not a medicine.
11. Do aerobic exercise (brisk walking, jogging, etc.) every alternate day.
More information on cholesterol
What is cholesterol? - Cholesterol is a steroid lipid, found in the cell membranes of all body tissues, and transported in the blood plasma, of all animals.
What is LDL cholesterol? - Low-density lipoprotein (or "bad") cholesterol carries the largest amount of cholesterol in the blood and is responsible for depositing cholesterol in the artery walls. An elevated LDL cholesterol level is associated with a greater risk of heart disease.
Why is LDL cholesterol considered "bad"? - When too much LDL cholesterol circulates in the blood, it can slowly build up in the inner walls of the arteries that feed the heart and brain.
What is HDL cholesterol? - High-density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol is one of several types of fats and is measured as 'Total Cholesterol'. HDL is thought to pick up cholesterol from body tissues and bring it back to the liver for reprocessing or excretion.
Why is HDL cholesterol considered "good"? - Because HDL clears cholesterol out of the system and high levels of it are associated with a decreased risk of heart disease, HDL is often called "good" cholesterol.
How to raise HDL Cholesterol (good cholesterol)? - Regular aerobic exercise, loss of excess weight (fat), and cessation of cigarette smoking cigarettes will increase HDL cholesterol levels.
How cholesterol is measured and tested? - Cholesterol is measured in units called millimoles per litre of blood, usually shortened to "mmol/litre" or "mmol/l".
What're the cholesterol readings? - Cholesterol readings you receive from your medical provider generally include total cholesterol, LDL cholesterol, and high density lipoproteins cholesterol levels.
How often should my cholesterol be checked? - According to a new set of national guidelines governing cholesterol measurement and treatment, it is recommended that the level be treated every 5 years.
What causes high cholesterol? - High cholesterol is caused by eating a diet that is high in saturated fats and cholesterol. Some people, however, have an inherited disorder in which the body cannot properly metabolize cholesterol.
What are the high cholesterol risk factors? - A diet high in certain types of fats is one factor. Medical problems such as poorly controlled diabetes, an underactive thyroid gland, an overactive pituitary gland, liver disease or kidney failure also may cause high cholesterol levels.
What're the symptoms of high cholesterol? - People with severely elevated cholesterol may have fat deposits in tendons and skin, liver and spleen enlargement, and abdominal pain if pancreatitis develops.
What are triglycerides? - Triglycerides are another type of fat that is associated with adverse health consequences. Many patients with high cholesterol also have high triglycerides.
How to test triglycerides? - For triglycerides testing, blood is drawn from a vein in the arm. A vein at the inside of the elbow or on the back of the hand is usually selected.
How can LDL cholesterol levels be lowered? - Lowering low-density lipoprotein cholesterol involves losing excess weight, exercising regularly, and following a diet that is low in saturated fat and cholesterol.
How to reduce cholesterol with dietary therapy? - A low-fat, low-cholesterol diet is desired to keep your total fat consumption--saturated, polyunsaturated and monounsaturated--to fewer than 30 percent of your daily intake of calories.
What about when I go out to eat? - Avoid fried foods. Entrees covered with sauces, as well as creamy dressing, thick soups and casseroles should be avoided because they are usually rich in fat. Look for items labeled "heart-healthy" on the menu.
What cholesterol medications are available to lower cholesterol? - Cholesterol-reducing drugs include cholestyramine (Questran), colestipol (Colestid), gemfibrozil (Lopid), lovastatin (Mevacor), pravastatin (Pravachol) and simvastatin (Zocor).
What nutritional supplements are available to reduce cholesterol? - Artichoke is particularly helpful in relieving gastrointestinal problems that result from an inability to adequately process fats. Garlic assists the heart for centuries and has been used in herbal medicines for all manner of conditions.
What cholesterol lowering food are there? - Eating more fiber-rich foods may help to lower your blood cholesterol level. Soy products are also linked to reduced cholesterol because of their isoflavone content.