According to the Ministry of Health, heart and vascular diseases are Russia’s leading cause of death. The higher the cholesterol, the more likely you will die from heart problems or complications. To protect yourself, it is essential to know the norm indicators and ways to reduce high cholesterol.
Why should you monitor your cholesterol levels?
Controlling cholesterol is a proven way to protect yourself from serious diseases. The double danger is that high cholesterol does not manifest itself for a long time, and symptoms appear only against the background of complications.
It is almost impossible to get rid of cholesterol, and it is unnecessary because it performs essential bodily functions. “Good” cholesterol is part of cell membranes, promotes cell repair, and synthesizes the substances we need: vitamin D, sex hormones, and bile.
Therefore, it is essential to regularly monitor the cholesterol level, which can be done with the help of a blood test. For starters, you can take a simple analysis showing total cholesterol. Further, if the results are high, the doctor will refer you to a detailed analysis – a lipid profile. It shows the ratio of “good” and “bad” cholesterol and the number of triglycerides in the blood. Based on the results, you will be able to start treatment on time.
Are the rates the same for everyone?
Cholesterol levels vary for certain people. What is high for some is normal for others. Only a doctor will interpret your tests correctly since acceptable indicators will vary from person to person and depend on pressure, blood sugar, and the presence of other diseases. Rates may vary depending on:
age. The older the person, the higher the risk of developing hypercholesterolemia. Therefore, starting from the age of 35, it is necessary to check and monitor cholesterol levels regularly. It is a mistake to think that this problem concerns only the elderly. High cholesterol is diagnosed in young people and even in children.
Heredity. The predisposition to high cholesterol can be inherited. Familiar hypercholesterolemia is a genetic disorder that affects the liver’s ability to regulate “bad” cholesterol. The disease can manifest itself in childhood and proceed severely, requiring the use of drugs, or in adulthood, in a milder form. If your close relatives have high cholesterol or problems with the heart and blood vessels, then this is a reason to start taking control of your health.
In middle age, high cholesterol is more often found in men, but during and after menopause, women become prone to this problem as often as men. In addition, cholesterol in women rises during pregnancy – it is necessary for the proper development of the child. The following shows how rates vary by gender and age:
Medications to lower cholesterol levels
At high rates, the patient is prescribed particular medications that reduce “bad” cholesterol. These drugs include statins, vitamin B, omega-3s, bile acid, and fibrates.
Statins are the first line of treatment for high cholesterol. They enhance the processing of “bad” cholesterol, suppress its synthesis, and also contribute to the prevention of atherosclerosis and heart disease.
However, synthetic drugs can have side effects, so they should only be taken as directed by a doctor. An alternative may be non-drug treatment, which we will discuss below.
Non-drug ways to lower cholesterol
Biological supplements, changing diet, daily exercise, giving up bad habits, and normalizing weight – are a few non-drug treatments. Here the desire of the person himself to switch to the proper lifestyle and lower cholesterol levels is essential. For non-drug treatment, doctors recommend the following:
To refuse bad habits. Alcohol abuse and smoking increase the growth of “bad” cholesterol, which settles on the walls of blood vessels. Treatment will be meaningless if you continue to drink and smoke.
Make it a habit to exercise. Sport is a faithful assistant on the road to recovery. Active physical activity makes it possible to reduce “bad” cholesterol in men and women and increase “good”. Cardio exercises are best suited for this: walking, brisk walking, aerobics, and jogging. The main thing is regularity. Otherwise, no load will work.
Normalized food. A healthy diet means avoiding trans fats and saturated fats. They are found in fast food, fried foods, meat, dairy products, convenience foods and margarine. This food should be excluded from the diet, as it affects the growth of cholesterol. What foods lower cholesterol?
Fiber is a proven tool in the fight against high cholesterol. Vegetables, beans, berries, white rice and wheat, oats, barley and nuts contain fiber, vitamins, and beneficial elements.
Legumes will help reduce “bad” cholesterol and positively affect digestion. The legume family includes beans, peas, chickpeas and mung beans.
Whole grains remove excess cholesterol and also reduce the risk of complications.
Nuts contain a large amount of unsaturated fatty acids and valuable elements. The main thing is not to overeat because they have a lot of calories.
Spices help lower cholesterol. Garlic will have a beneficial effect due to the high content of natural statins in it. But this method is not suitable for people with digestive problems.
Vitamins and probiotic complexes
As we already know, synthetic drugs are not for everyone, as they have side effects, including sarcopenia. An alternative may be the probiotic complex Lactoflorene® Cholesterol.
The complex includes:
Natural statin – red fermented rice (Monacolin K 10 mg),
Nicotinomide (vitamin of the PP group),
Powerful Antioxidant Coenzyme Q10
The most studied bifidobacteria is Bifidobacterium longum BB536.
Only a doctor can decide how and what is the best way to lower cholesterol levels. Statins are the primary drug for treating hypercholesterolemia: they protect blood vessels from damage, reduce the risk of heart attack and stroke. But we should not forget that treatment, even with the most modern drugs, will not be effective if you do not change your lifestyle.
I am Ankit Sharma Nutrition Consultant. My approach is holistic and customized to enable you to achieve true wellness – physically, mentally, and emotionally. I am from India but have clients across the globe. I can work with you to say goodbye to counting calories and short-term solutions. You will achieve long-term sustainable change in the way that they are eating, moving, living, and believing.