Raising your HDL

There is a lot of confusion regarding cholesterol.  Some say low is good, others say specific HIGH. When it is pursued, confusion arises and frequently you encounter a mumbled response.. Here is what my sources have to say: Low HDL (high density lipoprotein) is a risk factor for heart disease, you know that you need to elevate it… but how? Why would you want to increase this form of cholesterol?  HDL is the “good cholesterol”. It acts like a cholesterol dump truck, gathering “bad” cholesterol from the arteries and carrying it back to the liver for clearance. This heart protective effect may even slow the buildup of plaque in the arterial walls of the heart. HDL may also have some anti-inflammatory effects that are beneficial to your heart. That’s why you want your HDL to be high, so it can better carry out these responsibilities, to protect your heart.

5 Foods that raise your HDL:

Nuts: walnuts, almonds, peanuts, pistachios, pecans and hazelnuts are all good sources of heart-healthy fats and are great to add to your diet to increase your intake. Add nuts to cereal, yogurt, salad, stir fries, pasta or rice.

Seafood: salmon, mackerel, albacore tuna and halibut are highest in omega-3 fatty acids, which can boost HDL.

Olive Oil: high in unsaturated fats, olive oil is great with salads and can replace butter with fried foods.

Avocado: Good healthy heart snack, use it in omelets, or enjoy with veggies or crackers.

Oatmeal: Fiber can help bump up your HDL while reducing LDL.

Along with these HDL boosting foods, don’t forget the daily exercise!

Regular exercise signals your body to produce more HDL, making physical activity one of the most important factors to raising your HDL. Start with just 5 to 10 minutes a few days a week, but gradually increase until you’re active for at least 30 minutes 5 days a week.



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