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Thursday, January 29, 2009

Lower Cholesterol Level - Some Effective Natural Techniques

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Lower Cholesterol Level - Some Effective Natural Techniques

Obesity is a topical issue that has been closely studied and research into this subject reveals that obesity is on the increase. A popular theory as to why more and more people are overweight is that the fast food industry and mass catering, especially in schools , plus a more sedentary lifestyle has contributed to this problem.

The problem with obesity is that it carries a legacy of coronary and associated illness which could be potentially life threatening. However, preventative measures can be taken to avoid future suffering.

There is a link between obesity and high cholesterol, so both issues can be addressed by making lifestyle changes. These include maintaining a low cholesterol diet and taking some form of regular exercise.

A low cholesterol diet does not have to be bland and unpalatable. The main issue is to reduce the intake of food and to ensure that the healthier food options become a way of life.

The advice given to those who wish to lose weight and lower their level of cholesterol is to include certain foods that are rich in fiber and low in saturated fats. The best type of foods to introduce into the diet are fish, vegetables, including corn, mushrooms artichokes and garlic and to substitute full fat milk for soy milk. Whole grains, nuts and olive oil are also very effective as part of a low cholesterol diet.

Certain food groups containing fruits and vegetables are essential and the recommended daily amount of servings is five per day. The reason why vegetables are so beneficial is that they contain sterols which have been proven to prevent levels of cholesterol from rising. One advantage to this kind of diet is that everything required is easily accessible and relatively inexpensive.

It isn't just food that should be monitored but beverages also. Moderation is the key and one glass of red wine a day is actually permitted. Fluid intake is important as long as you limit the amount of alcohol to a moderate amount and include fruit juices, mineral water and non fat milk.

One type of fresh fruit juice that is particularly good for reducing cholesterol is Apple. Either bought or prepared yourself in a blender or juicer, apple juice should be regularly consumed for the best results, and is claimed to reduce cholesterol levels by fifty percent.

As previously mentioned another natural way to reduce cholesterol is to take up some form of regular exercise. You can easily incorporate this into your daily life by walking instead of using the car. Jogging and running are both excellent and don't require any equipment. There are many different types of great exercise classes offered at your local gym and most offer the service of a personal trainer who can design an exercise program that will include some resistance training with weights and a cardio vascular work out which is perfect for burning calories and thus reduce cholesterol. You might also like to consider some kind of competitive sport. It doesn't matter what you choose as long as you are disciplined and consistent.

As a last resort if your cholesterol levels are not reduced by diet and exercise your doctor may prescribe a course of drugs that are specifically created for the purpose of lowering cholesterol. The manufacturers of these medicines claims that can reduce cholesterol levels anywhere between fifteen to thirty percent, and this claim is substantiated by many studies that have shown significant reduction of cholesterol after taking these drugs.

On the negative side, drugs that are used to reduce levels of cholesterol do have certain contraindications and should never be taken unless under the advice of a physician.

You can monitor the levels of cholesterol in your system by having regular blood tests taken by your doctor, and you can ensure you are doing all you can to prevent the cholesterol levels increase by carefully choosing food that is proven to be beneficial for this condition, wherever you are.

About The Author:
Abhishek has got some great tips on Lowering Cholesterol! Download his FREE 85 Pages Ebook, "How To Lower Your Cholesterol" from his website http://www.Health-Whiz.com/506/index.htm. Only limited Free Copies available.

Lower Cholesterol Level

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Bran For Lowering Cholesterol

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Bran For Lowering Cholesterol
By Robert Rister

When you eat a high-fat food, such as butter, ice cream, whipped cream, or, say, fried chicken, the contents of your digestive tract become "smoother" and more viscous. Sensitive cells lining your intestine detect a change in the fluidity of the food in your gut. They release a hormone called cholecystokinin. This hormone tells your brain that you have eaten a filling, satisfying food.

Bran does the same thing. The fibers in bran swell up with water and make the contents in your digestive tract "smoother." The cells lining your intestine sense a change in the fluidity of the food being digested and release cholecystokinin, just as if you had eaten fat. Even though you have consumed relatively few calories, you feel full. Cholecystokinin also tells the nerves lining your stomach to "hold" the food longer so fats can be digested completely-even if there is little fat in the food because you have been eating bran.

This keeps your digestive tract from dumping a load of sugar into your bloodstream causing the sugar highs and sugar lows. Men and women, however, differ in their responses to cholecystokinin. Women are more sensitive to the hormone, and more likely to feel full after eating bran. Men are less sensitive to the hormone, and more likely to continue to want any food that is in sight.

You have to be careful about combining bran and high-fat foods, however. Fat "revs up" the liver to make a chemical called triacylglycerol. This chemical stores fat. Eating bacon and eggs tells the liver to make triacylglycerol to store any excess fat that may come along. (Of course, if you are, say, on Atkins and all you eat is one strip of bacon and one egg, there may not be any energy left over to store.) Eating a bran bagel also tells the liver to "rev up" to store fat.

If you eat the bran bagel with butter and cream cheese, and also have bacon and eggs, your fat storage system is going to especially primed to soak up those calories, more than if you ate just the bacon and eggs and cream cheese, and more than if you ate just the bran bagel. If you eat fiber, save the fatty foods for another time.

If bran stimulates the storage of fat, how can it lower cholesterol? The answer is, it doesn't, if you are eating a high-fat diet. If you limit your consumption of fats, however, every time you eat bran your liver is a little less likely to "rev up" to store fat. After about six weeks of including oat or rice bran in a daily diet including five to nine servings of fruits and vegetables will raise your protective HDL cholesterol and lower the potentially destructive LDL cholesterol, usually in the range of 10 to 20 "points (mg/dl).

Wheat bran does not lower cholesterol. It raises it. The best bran for cardiovascular health is oat bran, which not only improves cholesterol but lowers blood pressure. If you eat an ounce and a half (45 g) of oats every day and you follow a low-fat diet, you can expect your upper number (systolic) pressure to fall up to 7 "points" (mm/Hg) and your lower number (diastolic) pressure to fall up to 10 points.

Reduction in blood pressure when you eat oats every day is greater than if you lose weight or take medication without eating oats. Scientists do not know why oat bran lowers blood pressure and other kinds of bran do not, but there seems to be something in the soluble fiber of oats that stops the production of insulin, which helps the kidneys eliminate salt without losing other minerals, which lowers blood pressure. A word of caution on eating oat bran: Don't eat oat bran if you have gallstones. Eating oat bran stimulates the release of bile, and can make your gallbladder painful.

Read Red Yeast Rice for High Cholesterol and Could Curcumin Lower Cholesterol Robert Rister is the author or co-author of nine books on natural health including Healing without Medication.

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Robert_Rister

Lower Cholesterol Level

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Natural Cholesterol Reducer Verses Popular Statin Drugs

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Natural Cholesterol Reducer Verses Popular Statin Drugs

Cholesterol knows no boundries, it can be a problem for anyone. The problem is when it becomes a problem it has been elevated for to many years. I have found the best way to lower cholesterol is with phytosterols. What are phytosterols you ask?

Phytosterols come from plants and are chemically similar to cholesterol; phytosterols replace cholesterol in the digestive system, preventing cholesterol from entering the bloodstream.

The Journal of the American Medical Association, 2003 stated this, The combination of eating a high fiber diet and supplementing with phytosterols is just as effective at lowering cholesterol as popular statin drugs-of course without the adverse side effects.

Lipitor is often the drug of choice. Side effects of this drug are;

1. Headache-- in up to 16.7 percent

2. Infections -- up to 10.3 percent

3. Muscle pain -- up to 5.6 percent

4. Diarrhea -- up to 5.3 percent

5. Joint pain -- up to 5.1 percent

6. Inflammation of the sinuses (sinusitis) -- up to 6.4 percent

7. Accidental injury -- up to 4.2 percent.

Other common side effects that were observed in more than 2 to 4 percent of people included: Unexplained rash, abdominal pain (stomach pain), General feeling of weakness (asthenia), the flu, Back pain, Allergic reaction, Constipation, Inflammation of the sinuses (sinusitis), Sore throat (pharyngitis). There are a number of side effects with Lipitor that you should report immediately to your healthcare provider. These include, but are not limited to: Signs of liver damage, such as yellow eyes or skin, upper right abdominal pain, dark urine, and elevated liver enzymes. Muscle pain, tenderness, or weakness, especially if you also have a fever or feel ill, since these may be signs of serious breakdown of muscle, known as Rhabdomyolysis. Significant, unexplained changes in the amount of urine you produce (which may be a sign of kidney problems) Signs of an allergic reaction, such as: A rash, Itching, Hives, Wheezing or difficulty breathing, swelling of the mouth, tongue, or throat.

Two lawsuits are currently in progress; Wilson, one of the 2 plaintiffs who has filed a lawsuit: took Lipitor for 17 months from 2002 to 2003 and blames the drug for memory loss, nervous-system damage, and weakness in his arms and legs, which caused him to leave his job, according to Krum (the plaintiff's lawyer). Mazzariello blames Lipitor for memory loss and muscle damage, said Krum, and he needs a cane to walk.

My intention is not to bash Lipitor but to help people realize there are much safer alternatives, that work just as well or better. What has out of these studies is that phytosterols are most effective when taken with a high fat diet. This raises a quandary as to how can we use them to lower cholesterol when we need fat in our diet to get the full benefit of what they do?

A process has been developed where the plant phytosterols are combined with omega-3 fatty acids and the combination has proven very effective. Not only is cholesterol reduced but triglycerides are reduced as well. What is really beautiful is the fact there are no side effects experienced at all. Independent clinical studies show phytosterols reduce cholesterol up to 29%. Let's compare a few products with phytosterols to fight cholesterol that are available now;

Coromega Omega-3 Packets contain 650mg of Fish Oils & Omega 3's and cost about $1.01 cents per day. There are no phytosterols for cholesterol in this product.

Twinlab's Cholesterol Success has 900mg of phytosterol Esters but no Omega-3's and costs about $0.89 per day.

Enzymatic therapy's Cholesteril Plus has 400mg phytosterol esters and no Omega-3's and costs about $1.02 per day.

Lipitor the drug alternative costs about $3.12 per day, the side effects were discussed above.

The supplement I used and highly recommend reduced my cholesterol to safe levels costs $0.67 per day and has 1500mg of plant phytosterol esters and 1000mg of Omega-3's. The two together are a wonderful team. The fish oil supplies the fat needed for the plant phytosterols to really do their job at attaching cholesterol while at the same time the Omega-3's do their job with triglycerides and many other functions in the body. There you have it; the best of science and the best of nature working together and bringing a super cardivascular benefit to you

About The Author:
I'm John and I have had high cholesterol and high blood pressure and have found how to control them with natural means and am so excited that I can write these articles and share what I have found with you and others. If this makes your life better I'm happy. If you need more information visit my website and Help Your Heart Health with some more really good information. You can also call me direct at my home office: (918) 543-2675 or e-mail me at john@secrettohearthealth.info. I look forward to speaking with you and answering any questions you might have. Call now before you put it off and forget. Leave your name, number and the nature of your call. I promise you at least a 30 minute consultation to help you in your search for better health.

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=John_Wayne_Miller

John Wayne Miller - EzineArticles Expert Author

Lower Cholesterol Level

Sunday, January 4, 2009

Lower Your Cholesterol by Eating Almonds

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Lower Your Cholesterol by Eating Almonds

Almonds are a high-fat food with the unexpected application of lowering cholesterol. Researchers at St. Michael's Hospital in Toronto conducted an experiment involving twenty-seven men and women with high cholesterol who agreed to snack only on foods that the hospital provided for thirty days. One-third of the study participants sate a 150-calorie low-fat whole-wheat cookie three times a day, one-third ate a 150-calorie snack that contained equal calories from whole wheat and almonds three times a day, and one-third ate a 150-calorie snack that contained only almonds three times a day.

At the end of the month, none of the study participants had gained or lost weight. In the whole-wheat group, LDL cholesterol and total cholesterol levels were the same at the end of the study as at the beginning of the study, and the half-wheat/half-almond group experienced an average reduction of 4 percent in LDL cholesterol levels and 9 percent reductions in total cholesterol levels. Meanwhile, the almonds-only group experienced 8 percent reductions in LDL cholesterol and 12 percent reductions in total cholesterol.

A similar study at Louisiana State University, in which participants were given 400 calories in almonds a day for a month found reductions of 21 percent in LDL and 29 percent in total cholesterol. Researchers at the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation in Australia found that almonds lower cholesterol even if they are consumed in candy, but by only 7 to 9 percent.

The beneficial effect of almonds on cholesterol seems to be due to their high content of unsaturated fat. Despite their high-fat content, eating almonds on a regular basis does not lead to weight gain. Nutritionists at Loma Linda University in California instructed a volunteer group of non-athlete men and women aged twenty-five to seventy-five who were not on a heavy exercise program to eat 320 calories in almonds in addition to their regular intake of food every day for a year.

Food diaries showed that participants ate more 50-150 total calories a day when they ate almonds, although most had a diminished appetite for other high-fat foods.

At the end of the year, participants were weighed and measured, and underwent blood tests. One of the surprising results of the study was that participants who were overweight when the study began lost weight, despite taking in more calories when they ate almonds. The only participants in the study who gained weight-by eating more calories-were the few who were underweight at the beginning of the study. Surprised by this result, the researchers did blood tests for the presence of plant lectins that confirmed that participants actually ate the almonds.

The cholesterol-lowering compounds in the almonds are the monounsaturated fatty acids found in the oil. Almond oil, which is available in grocery stores and can be used in place of other cooking oils or fats, also lowers cholesterol. Almond oil also contains vitamin E, which may reduce the oxidation of LDL cholesterol, a key event in the development of cardiovascular disease. Other nutrients important to cardiovascular health are found in the non-fatty part of the nut and, therefore, are not found in almond oil. The cholesterol-lowering effects of eating whole almonds are greater than those from the consumption of an equivalent amount of almond fat supplied as almond oil.

And that's not all the benefits of almonds in heart health. Almond kernels are rich in the amino acid arginine, a dietary precursor for nitric oxide, which keeps blood vessels pliable and open. Almonds are a significant source of the trace element magnesium. A 2-ounce serving of almonds contains about one-third of the body's daily requirements of this nutrient. (Even if you take magnesium supplement, you should eat some magnesium-rich foods such as almonds to provide a steady supply of the element to your body.) Almonds also contain cardioprotective copper in significant concentration.

Eat almonds raw or roasted. You might try almond butter as a substitute for peanut butter. Almond butter contains all the nutritional value of whole almonds. The oil in almond butter sometimes rises to the top of the jar, but you can just stir it back in before use.

Almond milk also contains all of almonds' nutrients. It's made from ground almonds suspended in water and usually sweetened with rice syrup. Drink almond milk like milk or use to make fruit smoothies. Almond milk goes exceptionally well with apricots. There's no lactose in almond milk, so you can drink it even if you are lactose intolerant.

About The Author:
Read about Diet & Lowering Cholesterol and Lowering Cholesterol with Red Yeast Rice. Robert Rister is the author or co-author of nine books on natural health.

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Robert_Rister

Lower Cholesterol Level

Thursday, January 1, 2009

Total Cholesterol - What Does it Mean?

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Total Cholesterol - What Does it Mean?
By Matt Morrison

With all of the new information that has been given to us concerning cholesterol over the recent years, it isn't hard to get lost in the fray of HDL, LDL, triglycerides and total cholesterol counts. On average, people just don't know what it means anymore, let alone how to calculate it. Even if they figure out how to calculate it, what does any of it mean? Cholesterol is a double-edged sword, and while it is getting constant attention, it needs to be truly understood in order to harness its pros and cons.

Going to your doctor and requesting a simple lipid panel is the best way to get accurate cholesterol results. Be sure to plan your blood work ahead of time, though, as you need to refrain from eating and drinking (besides water) for twelve hours before the exam. Depending on your medical coverage, results should be in within about a week, and they should be sent to your home so that you can do the calculations on your own.

The blood test will contain three categories, HDL cholesterol (this is good cholesterol), LDL cholesterol (this is bad cholesterol), and triglycerides (another form of fat that is found in your blood). Remember, the numbers are measured in mg/dL, which is milligrams per deciliter of blood. At first glance, some things to look at concerning your numbers are as follows: HDL cholesterol should be above 40mg/dL in men, and above 50mg/dL in women. Anything lower than this represents borderline to high risk levels of cholesterol. On the LDL scale, an optimal number is below 100mg/dL, though a healthy amount can be measured all the way up to 130mg/dL. Above 130mg/dL and below 160mg/dL are borderline high risk, and anything above 160mg/dL is considered a high risk amount of LDL cholesterol. Finally are your triglyceride levels. On average, these numbers should be below 150mg/dL. So, on to the calculations.

With these three numbers in hand, the formula to find your total cholesterol is simple. First, you add your LDL and HDL levels. Then, take your triglyceride level, divide it by five, and add it to the sum of your LDL/HDL levels. (i.e. if HDL = 45, LDL = 105 and Triglycerides = 160 the formula should look like this: [45+105] + [160/5] = total cholesterol of 182mg/dL). This number is your total cholesterol level, and the desirable number here is below 200mg/dL, though borderline high risk goes up to 239mg/dL.

With all of the concern focused on having a high total cholesterol, many other factors are often overlooked. Runners tend to have a very high HDL cholesterol count and a very low LDL count as a result of the amount of exercise they do. This affects their total cholesterol, and may still put them in to the borderline zone of total cholesterol, but that doesn't mean that they are high risk. Many doctors are now looking at maintaining a healthy HDL/LDL ratio as opposed to worrying bout total cholesterol. The target here is to keep the ratio of these two cholesterols somewhere above 0.3, while the ideal ratio is 0.4.

To learn how to increase hdl and get your heart disease statistics in check, visit: http://www.decreasecholesterol.com

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Matt_Morrison

Lower Cholesterol Level