High cholesterol is one of the main factors that lead to cardiovascular disease and in turn death. This is why it is important that cholesterol counts be kept within a healthy range. When it is too high, doctors can prescribe medications to help lower it. There are also cholesterol lowering supplements that can help to lower cholesterol levels and help lower the amount of medications needed.
Cholesterol numbers are broken down into HDL and LDL, high density and low density cholesterol. These represent the count of combined protein and cholesterol, known as lipoproteins.
HDL is often referred to as ‘good cholesterol’. These lipoproteins are responsible for helping the body get rid of excess cholesterol that is not being used in the liver.
LDL transports cholesterol to the necessary organs and tissue in the body from the liver. When the amount of LDL is too large and the HDL is not high enough to handle the excess plaque begins to form in the arteries and cardiovascular disease is the end result. Plaque buildup can also cause heart disease, paralysis, and stroke.
Cholesterol Lowering Supplements
In addition to following doctors orders and taking prescription medications that are suggested, there are a number of things a person with high cholesterol can do to help lower it and prevent the damaging effects on the body.
Fiber, either as a supplement or directly from foods, is one way to help the body naturally lower its cholesterol numbers. Fiber, especially from whole grain, is soluble and will help to lower LDL and raise HDL.
This has been known by medical science for years but has recently been promoted more heavily than in the past. Oat bran and whole grain foods are not the only sources of fiber that will help to lower cholesterol. Fiber can be taken as a supplement and is available in pill, powder and liquid forms.
Other supplements that are good for fighting cholesterol are Omega-3 fatty acids. These supplements are generally in the forms of fish oils and are available as both a supplement alone and as an ingredient in most supplements that are designed for lowering cholesterol.
Vitamins such as the family of B vitamins, including B-6, B-12, and Niacin have also proven to be beneficial in both lowering bad cholesterol while raising the good cholesterol numbers. However, because Niacin can cause liver damage if taken in excess it is important to take as directed.
Vitamin E has shown great benefits in reducing cholesterol. Even when used in small amounts, this Vitamin lowers bad cholesterol and helps to raise good cholesterol.
Antioxidants are powerful combatants of cholesterol and should also be added to a nutritional program when trying to lower cholesterol. Antioxidants are available as supplements and are found in many foods.
Lowering cholesterol is important in keeping the heart healthy in order to live a longer and fuller life. Cholesterol lowering supplements in addition to a healthy diet and exercise can be beneficial in reaching the lower cholesterol numbers that are needed for good health.