How to Lower Cholesterol without Medication

Are you wondering how to lower cholesterol without medication through simple diet tips and exercise? If yes, you're in the right place.

In the old days, doctors handed out statins to just about every patient over the age of 45; advanced research now shows that that the best way to reduce your risk for heart disease does not come in a bottle. It's up to modern physicians and health experts to teach patients how to lower cholesterol without medication in a natural way that the human body prefers.

According to Harvard Medical School, one in four Americans age 45 and older take a statin to lower cholesterol levels. With this many people on medications, you would think high cholesterol would be a thing of the past, but not so.

Even though 32 million Americans take statins, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention say that 17 percent of the adults in the United States still suffer from high cholesterol.

It will take a considerable amount of relearning on your part. You must become a cholesterol aficionado, expert in all things lipid. (Or have access to someone who does.)

How Your Diet Affects Cholesterol

Put aside the old, outdated science that dictated you gobble statins and avoid saturated fat like the plague. Recent studies show that moderate portions of saturated fat raise cholesterol levels only temporarily before they return to normal.

Instead, direct your attention to the trans fats, sugars and simple carbohydrates invading your plate. Every two percent of calories from trans fats raises risk for heart disease by 23 percent. A medium serving of French fries from McDonald's provides about this amount of trans fat.

Know your simple carbohydrates from your complex ones. Your body uses glucose and carbohydrates for immediate and stored energy. It starts by metabolizing sugar, storing simple carbohydrates in the liver in the form of triglycerides, another type of lipid in the bloodstream.

Exercise and Cholesterol

Physical activity improves cholesterol levels. Exercise 30 minutes on five days a week to increase HDL levels about five points. Feel free to break exercise into three 10-minute sessions if it helps you fit exercise into your daily routine.

Experts believe exercise increases an enzyme responsible for gathering excess LDL and moving it to the liver where it is recycled into bile or eliminated from the body. Vigorous exercise seems to increase enzyme activity more than a moderate workout. This supports newer research which shows that shorter bursts of more brisk activity is healthier for your heart than longer periods of less intensity.

Lifestyle and Cholesterol

Most lifestyle-related tips on how to lower cholesterol will fall into one of two categories … diet or exercise.

A proper diet and regular exercise will help you shed those extra pounds; you will not only look and feel better, but you will improve your cholesterol levels too. You can potentially raise HDL a point for every six pounds you lose. Quit smoking to raise HDL another ten points.

Keep your blood pressure and blood sugar at healthy levels. Discuss ways with your healthcare professional to control hypertension and hyperglycemia. She may also have other ideas on how to lower LDL cholesterol, raise HDL and other ways to keep your cholesterol in balance without taking medications.

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