Seven Components of a Good Cholesterol Management Plan
Posted on 21 August 2015 by Leonie Satori
High cholesterol is one of the most commonly misunderstood health conditions in Western society and in many cases prescription medications can be reduced or postponed with some simple dietary and lifestyle changes. The following information is not intended to be an all encompassing solution to hypercholesterolemia, we suggest researching, learning and making properly educated decisions when looking at 'solutions' to high cholesterol.
The following lifestyle tips are a good starting point for those embarking on the journey to better cholesterol management, we suggest seeking more detailed and specific guidelines from your naturopath or herbalist to refine your treatment strategy.
Lifestyle Management: ‘stress’ plays a most important role in our own internal cholesterol production. Learning techniques to manage perception of stress and reduce stress responses can make life easier to manage and in the long term improve your overall happiness. Learning to laugh at yourself, practicing meditation and spending time in nature can be some of the simplest and rewarding ways to better manage cholesterol and your overall health.
Exercise: helps to improve circulation and blood flow throughout the body, it also helps to lower LDL cholesterol and increase HDL cholesterol and can help with stress management. Aim for a minimum of 30 minutes per day; include walking, swimming, dancing, yoga and Pilates for variety.
Herbs: play an integral role in targeting effective cholesterol management. Depending on your particular health concerns and risk factors, herbal blends to support the cardiovascular system, regulate blood sugar levels, support the liver function or lower blood pressure can ensure targeted therapeutic results. Ask our naturopath for advice regarding herbs specific for your needs.
Good fats: balance is the key to supporting healthy cholesterol levels with diet and nutrition. Avoiding processed fats from fast foods, pastries, margarine and processed foods plays priority role in cholesterol management, as does limiting excessive amounts of animal fats. Including good fats from cold water fish, nuts and seeds and avocadoes can help with healthier cholesterol ratios.
Spice It Up: various culinary spices play a big role in providing anti-clotting factors, can protect the walls of the blood vessels and promote healthy blood flow to the tissues of the body. Including spices such as garlic, ginger, cinnamon, fenugreek and turmeric into your regular diet can not only improve your cardiovascular health, but also add a little spice into your life!
Antioxidants: included in the daily diet can help to improve the integrity of blood vessel walls, vitamin C is specifically important for lowering LDLs and triglycerides. Including a variety of antioxidant rich foods in your daily diet including various coloured fruits and vegetables and dark coloured berries can help to improve your cardiovascular health.
Fibre: rich foods can help to reduce cholesterol absorption in the digestive tract and support cholesterol elimination through the bowel. Including soluble fibre supplements such as chia seeds, psyllium and flax seeds in your daily diet are a great way to improve cholesterol and support your digestive health.
As well as these above lifestyle and dietary factors it is also important to see that elevated cholesterol is a symptom that is part of your whole health. Improved cholesterol health may only be achieved when you address other health issues such as elevated blood pressure, diabetes or excess weight, thyroid issues or other chronic medical conditions. Approaching cholesterol health holistically can help you to avoid long term health issues and reduce reliance on pharmaceutical medication. Ask our naturopath for further guidance with managing your whole health - naturally.