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Are Your Cholesterol Levels Good, or Bad?

By Stephen R. Farris

When it comes to cholesterol, it's probably safe to say that many of us have less than desirable levels. What I mean is, we're more likely to have the "bad" kind, due to our unhealthy food choices and lack of regular exercise, 

We should strive to reach a total of 200 mg/dL (deciliter) in our overall cholesterol values. Unfortunately, many of us end up with too much of the LDL type, which is not a good sign. High levels of LDL cholesterol can build up along the walls of our arteries. When these walls start to become blocked, we're at a very high level for heart attack.

According to research studies, LDL levels should be about 100 to 129 mg/dL. We fall more onto the side of risk when those levels are between 130 to 159 mg/dL or higher.

Doctors can prescribe medications to help reduce your LDL levels, but if you're looking for another alternative than pills, try a natural approach and make some changes in your diet.

Where to Start

When it comes to reducing LDL levels to a safer point, take a look at your daily diet. Are you reading food labels to see what types of fats and carbs they have? A good starting point in lowering your cholesterol levels is by consuming foods that are lower in unsaturated fats. Examples of healthy unsaturated fats include fatty fish, certain cooking oils such as vegetable and olive, and avocados. 

Here's some more great choices to get you started in lowering your cholesterol levels:

  • Oatmeal
  • White beans
  • Avocado (previously mentioned)
  • Egg plant
  • Carrots
  • Almonds
  • Kiwi fruit
  • Berries
  • Cauliflower
  • Soy
  • Salmon

Remember to get plenty of fiber in your diet, as this also plays a big part in the role of reducing cholesterol. Fiber comes in two forms, soluble and insoluble. Soluble fiber can be dissolved in water, creating a gel substance that is able to trap cholesterol where it exits the body through waste, rather than allowing it to enter the arteries. 

Insoluble fiber doesn't dissolve in water, but promotes a fuller feeling when it's part of your diet. In a nutshell, you tend to eat less, therefore maintaining your weight or possibly losing some.

Last, but not least, you should always consult with your physician or chiropractor when it comes to your health, especially before starting a diet or exercise.

To learn more about your health, wellness and fitness, see your local chiropractor at The Joint Chiropractic in Taylors, S.C.

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