High cholesterol does not have symptoms. But you increase your chances of getting it by doing any these things.
Since high cholesterol does not have symptoms, you might be putting yourself at risk without even knowing it. “Cholesterol is the waxy substance inside your blood. Your body has to have cholesterol to build healthy cells, but high levels of this can raise your risk of getting heart disease,” reports the Mayo Clinic. “Factors that can raise your risk of having bad cholesterol include” these things.
1 — Bad Diet
“Consuming saturated fat, which is found inside animal products, along with trans fats, found in some commercial cookies and crackers or microwave popcorn, can increase your cholesterol,” says the Mayo Clinic. “Foods that are filled cholesterol, like red meat and full-fat dairy, will also raise your cholesterol.”
2 — Obesity
“Having a BMI (body mass index) of 30 or more puts you at higher risk of having high cholesterol,” reports the Mayo Clinic.
3 — Lack of Exercise
“Exercise helps increase your body’s HDL, which is the ‘good,’ cholesterol while increasing the size of the particles that form your LDL, which is your ‘bad,’ cholesterol, this enlargement makes the LDL less harmful,” the Mayo Clinic says.
4 — Smoking
“Smoking hurts the walls of your blood vessels, causing them to be more prone to accumulating fatty deposits. Smoking could also lower your HDL, or ‘good,’ cholesterol,” the Mayo Clinic says.
5 — Your Age
Because a human’s body chemistry changes with age, your risk of having high cholesterol goes up. For instance, as you get older, your liver is less able to filter out LDL cholesterol.
6 — Diabetes
High blood sugar leads to higher levels of the most dangerous cholesterol called very-low-density lipoprotein (VLDL) and less HDL (good) cholesterol. High blood sugar also hurts the lining of your arteries.
7 — How to Stop High Cholesterol
The same lifestyle changes that can reduce your cholesterol can help stop you from having high cholesterol at all. To stop high cholesterol in its tracks, you can:
- Eat a low-salt diet with vegetables, fruits and whole grains
- Limit the animal fats and use good fats in moderation
- Lose your extra pounds and keep a healthy weight
- Stop smoking
- Exercise on most days for at least 30 minutes
- Drink alcohol only in moderation, if at all
- Manage your stress
Author: Scott Dowdy