Cholesterol is synthesized in the liver and has many important roles. Cholesterol keeps the cell wall flexible and is involved in the synthesis of certain hormones. Like other substances in the body, high cholesterol in the wrong areas can lead to health problems. Like other fats, cholesterol is insoluble in water. Instead, cholesterol is transported in the body by lipoproteins, which have a similar role for fat and fat-soluble vitamins. Lipoprotein varieties have different effects on the body. For example, an excess of low-density lipoprotein (LDL) can accumulate in the vascular wall of cholesterol and cause problems such as vascular obstruction, stroke, heart attack and renal failure. In contrast, high-density lipoprotein (HDL) allows cholesterol to be transported through vessels and reduces the risk of developing these diseases. The liver produces the required amount of cholesterol to the body and carries cholesterol through very low density lipoprotein (VLDL). When VLDL transfers the fat it carries to the cells, it converts to a low-density lipoprotein (HDL) that carries cholesterol where necessary. The liver also synthesizes high-density lipoprotein (HDL), which is responsible for restoring unused cholesterol. This process is called reverse cholesterol transport ve and protects the body against vascular blockages and heart diseases. Some lipoproteins, especially LDL and VLDL, are prone to damage by free radicals as a result of oxidation. Oxidized LDL and VLDL are very harmful to the heart. Although food companies market their products as low cholesterol, cholesterol from food has no significant effect on the amount of cholesterol in the blood. This is because the liver produces cholesterol based on the amount of food you consume. If the amount of cholesterol you get from the food you eat is high, the liver produces less cholesterol. In a study, individuals selected among 45 adults increased the amount of cholesterol taken from food by consuming two eggs per day. As a result of the study, there was no difference in the cholesterol and lipoprotein levels of the participants with high cholesterol. Although cholesterol from food does not have a major impact, the different nutrients you consume, genetics, smoking and still life can increase this effect. Here are some ways to lower cholesterol.
Consume Unsaturated Fat
Unlike saturated fats, unsaturated fats are used differently in the body because they contain at least two double bonds. Mono-unsaturated oils contain only one double bond. Although some experts recommend limiting fat consumption for weight loss, a review of 10 people over 6 weeks shows that low fat consumption reduces LDL (bad cholesterol) but also lowers HDL (good cholesterol). In contrast, a monounsaturated fat-rich diet reduces the amount of LDL and maintains a certain level of HDL in the blood. A study of 24 adults with high blood pressure showed that a monounsaturated fat-rich diet increased HDL by 12%. Monounsaturated fats also inhibit lipoprotein oxidation, which is the cause of vascular obstruction. A study involving 26 individuals found that consuming monounsaturated fat instead of polyunsaturated fat reduces oxidation. Monounsaturated fats are very healthy because they lowered LDL cholesterol and reduce oxidation. Unsaturated fat sources: olives, olive oil, canola oil, almonds, walnuts, pecan nuts, hazelnuts, cashew and avocado.
Consume Polyunsaturated Fats Like Omega-3
Polyunsaturated fats are used differently in the body because they contain at least two double bonds. Research shows that polyunsaturated fat consumption reduces LDL and the risk of heart disease. In a study of 115 adults, participants consume polyunsaturated fat instead of saturated fat for eight weeks. After eight weeks, the LDL cholesterol level decreased by 10%. In another study with 13,614 participants, individuals consumed polyunsaturated fats equivalent to 15% of their daily calorie needs instead of saturated fat, and the risk of developing coronary artery disease was reduced by 20%. Polyunsaturated fat consumption also reduces the risk of developing metabolic syndrome and type 2 diabetes. In a study of 4220 adult dietary changes, it was observed that individuals receiving 5% of their daily calorie needs from polyunsaturated fats instead of carbohydrates had decreased blood sugar and fasting insulin levels and risk of type 2 diabetes. In particular, omega-3 fatty acid is a polyunsaturated fat useful to the heart. It is found in seafood and supplemental fish oil. Omega-3 fatty acid is found in high amounts in oily fish such as salmon, mackerel, herring, tuna and white tuna. Lower proportions of shrimp and shellfish also contain this fatty acid. Omega-3 is also found in seeds and nuts other than peanuts.
Stay Away From Trans Fats
Trans fat is an unsaturated fat whose structure is changed by a process called hydrogenation. The purpose of this process is to make the unsaturated oil contained in vegetable oils more stable. Many margarines and fats contain partially hydrogenated vegetable oil. As a result of, trans oil although not saturated, is solid at room temperature. Since it is more viscous than unsaturated oils, it is used in cream, pastry and cookies by food companies. Partial hydrogenated trans fat has body-damaging aspects. Trans fat increases the amount of cholesterol and LDL, while reducing the level of HDL seen as good cholesterol by 20%. A study of global health data shows that trans fat is responsible for 8% of heart disease-related deaths. Another study showed that the trans fat would reduce heart disease-related deaths by 4.5%. In many countries, food companies are obliged to specify the amount of trans fat contained in their products. However, not everything written on the packaging may be correct because companies do not have to show this amount if the amount of trans fat per serving in a product is less than 0.5 grams. If you want to avoid this, you should read the content list of the product. Products with partial hydrogenated vegetable oil in the list of ingredients contain trans fat and it is recommended to avoid these products.
Consume Soluble Fiber
Soluble fibers are water-soluble plant parts that are indigestible to humans. However, beneficial bacteria living in the intestinal flora can digest this fiber and even make use of it as a nutrient. These beneficial bacteria, also called probiotics, reduce the levels of harmful lipoprotein, LDL and VLDL. A study of 30 people who received 3 grams of soluble fiber supplements daily for 12 weeks revealed that participants LDL levels increased by 18%. In another study on nutritional supplement cereals, it was observed that soluble fibers obtained from pectin decrease LDL by 4% and soluble fibers obtained from cauliflower decrease by 6%. Soluble fiber also increases the effect of statin drugs. In a 12-week study involving 68 adults, 15 grams of fiber supplements were added to the diet of individuals taking 10 milligrams of lipid-lowering drugs daily. This has been shown to have more effect than 20 milligrams of statin consumption without fiber reinforcement. Soluble fiber reduces the risk of disease. A review of research on this topic shows that consumption of highly soluble and water-insoluble fibers reduces the risk of death by almost 15%. Another study on the eating habits of 350,000 people revealed that individuals who meet their fiber needs from cereals and cereals have a 15-20% lower risk of death during a 14-year study. The richest sources of soluble fiber are beans, peas, lentils, fruit, oats and whole grains. Fiber reinforcement is also a safe and inexpensive method.
Exercise is perfect for heart health. It benefits your physical health and prevents obesity, but lowers LDL and increases good cholesterol (HDL). A study of 20 obese women shows that a 12-week aerobic and resistance exercise program reduces the amount of oxidized LDL. Participants participated in activities such as walking, aerobic movements, resistance exercise and low-tempo dance for 15 minutes three times a week. Even low-paced exercises like walking increase the amount of HDL. Increasing the duration and intensity of exercise increases its benefits. According to 13 studies, exercising 30 minutes five days a week balances cholesterol levels and reduces the risk of heart disease. While aerobic exercises should increase the heart rate to 75% of the maximum rate, 50% of the maximum effort is used for resistance exercises. Activities that increase the heart rhythm to 85% of the maximum value increase the amount of HDL and decrease the amount of LDL. The longer the duration of the exercise, the greater the benefits. Medium-intensity resistance exercises not only lower LDL levels, but intense exercises increase the amount of HDL. Increasing the number of repetitions also increases the benefits.
Try to Lose Weight
One’s diet affects the body’s absorption and production of cholesterol. According to a two-year study on 90 adults using three different diets, the amount of cholesterol taken from food increased and the body’s cholesterol production decreased after weight loss. During the two-year study, participants HDL levels increased while LDL levels remained stable and their risk of developing heart disease decreased. In a similar study conducted on 14 male participants, LDL levels decreased as a result of weight loss. Another study with 35 women showed that individuals had decreased cholesterol production even six months after they had lost weight.
Smoking increases the risk of heart disease in different ways. One of them is to disrupt the body’s cholesterol balance. The immune system cells of smokers cannot transport cholesterol from the vessel wall back to the liver. The source of this problem is the tar contained in cigarettes rather than nicotine. Failure to perform these functions can lead to vascular blockage. A comprehensive study of thousands of individuals in the Asia-Pacific region has shown that smoking causes a decrease in HDL levels and an increase in cholesterol. Fortunately, quitting smoking eliminates these harmful effects.
Don’t Consume Excessive Alcohol
In the decision, alcohol consumption increases the HDL level and reduces the risk of heart disease thanks to the ethanol present in the drinks. A study of 18 years adult women found that drinking 24 grams of alcohol daily by consuming white wine increased the HDL level by 5% over the same amount of grape juice. Alcohol also improves reverse cholesterol transport, which allows cholesterol in the blood and vessel walls to be transported back to the liver. This reduces the risk of vascular occlusion and heart disease. Consuming alcohol in moderation reduces the risk of heart disease, while too much alcohol damages the liver and increases the risk of addiction. The recommended daily consumption is two for men and one for women.
Use Herbal Sterol and Stanol
Many supplements are promising about nutrient cholesterol. Sterol and stanol are the vegetable equivalents of cholesterol. Because they resemble cholesterol, they are absorbed in the same way by the body. However, as their chemical structure differs from cholesterol in humans, there is no benefit to vascular obstruction. Instead, they reduce the amount of cholesterol by competing with the cholesterol produced by the body. When sterol absorption occurs, cholesterol absorption stops. Vegetable oils and butter alternatives contain small amounts of stanol and sterol. A study of 60 participants showed that consumption of one gram of stanol reduced yogurt consumption by 15%. In another study, this rate was found to be 20%. Despite these benefits, stanol and sterol have not been proven to reduce the risk of heart disease. Sufficient research has not yet been conducted on supplementary foods containing dense stanol and sterol.