Guest Author - Gretchen Goel
With more news on the harmful effects of Cholesterol lowering drugs, itís important for everyone to know that in most cases drugs are not needed to lower cholesterol. Drugs do not take the place of healthy eating and lifestyle habits and responsible doctors will recommend a nutrition, exercise and stress reduction program before prescribing drugs to a patient. Furthermore, though genes can influence your cholesterol levels, specifically LDL, inherited lifestyle habits like eating a diet high in animal foods, saturated fats and not having a regular exercise and stress reduction program in place will determine whether those genes are activated.
If your cholesterol is hovering at 200 (mg/dl), you need to work on lowering it. 200 is ďaverageĒ not ďoptimalĒ for disease prevention. According to data from the Framingham Study, those who took part in the study who had cholesterol levels of less than 150 achieved the lowest coronary artery disease risk.
Hereís what you can do to lower cholesterol (and lose weight!) in just 6 weeks:
1. Drink more plain, purified water. You need to drink half your weight in ounces daily. Adequate water intake cleanses the organs and arteries.
2. Have oatmeal (whole rolled oats) for breakfast, but center your diet on raw plant foods. You need 9-13 servings of raw fruit and mostly raw or lightly steamed vegetables. Raw plant foods contain fiber that keeps the arteries clean and sweeps your colon clean too.
3. Quit dairy products and eat fewer animal foods. All animal foods contain cholesterol. And we want that out of our bodies, right? Eating only 2 or 3 small servings a week will quickly lower your cholesterol.
4. Get Trans Fats out of your diet. Read all food labels and ask for ingredient lists when dinning out. Trans Fats are guaranteed to be elevating your cholesterol level. You cannot afford a single gram of Trans Fat in your diet, so donít assume itís one of those things you can have in moderation.
5. Watch your intake of refined carbohydrates and sugar, as it will raise your Triglyceride levels. Sugar is added to all prepackaged foods. You want to avoid refined sugar and reduce your intake of foods that are sweetened with organic cane juice and other natural sweeteners. If you are consuming Splenda, stop today. Splenda and other artificial sweeteners are not a health promoting food. It does not provide nutrients to your cells, it damages them.
6. Exercise aerobically in your target heart rate at least 4 times a week, for 45 minutes. Exercise lowers triglyceride levels. If you are not putting exercise on your planner and avoiding interruptions at those scheduled times, you are doing your body a great disservice because exercise not only gets your blood circulating at optimum levels, but reduces stress. Two things that lower cholesterol.
7. Watch your fat intake. You need to keep your fat grams under 20 per day and make them healthy forms of fat like Organic Cold Pressed or Unrefined Oils, Nuts, Seeds or Avocadoes.
8. Meditate! If you donít like to sit still, you can do walking meditations, or even coloring mediations. Mediation clears your mind from worries. Itís good to empty all the negative thoughts and worries daily. When we let them build up in our mind we believe things are worse than they really are and become stressed. Stress accumulates and damages our body over the long term.
Keep a journal to track your food and exercise habits over the next 6 weeks while following these steps. Lowering cholesterol is essential for optimum health. By following the steps above you can quickly lower your cholesterol without drugs or expensive supplements. Your doctor will be amazed and you can educate him/her on how you did it!