Keeping cholesterol under control is an important part of maintaining your health as you age. 38% of Americans have high cholesterol. That also means they’re at higher risk for heart disease, heart attacks, and strokes.
Most of us know that we need to keep our cholesterol lower—but what is a healthy cholesterol range? How can we manage it? And is all cholesterol bad?
We have the answers to all of your cholesterol questions!
Read on to find out what the ideal cholesterol numbers look like, the difference between “good” and “bad” cholesterol, and six ways you can keep your cholesterol under control!
The Difference Between Good Cholesterol and Bad Cholesterol
Cholesterol is a waxy substance in your blood. It isn’t necessarily bad—in fact, your body does need cholesterol! You use cholesterol to make vitamins and hormones.
But there are two types of cholesterol—HDL (high-density lipoprotein) and LDL (low-density lipoprotein).
LDL is known as “bad” cholesterol. By itself, it isn’t inherently bad, but it can build up in your arteries, combined with fats. When that happens, you are at increased risk for a stroke.
HDL, on the other hand, is known as “good” cholesterol. HDL actually helps remove LDL out of your body by carrying it to the liver.
Another factor in your cholesterol level is the amount of triglycerides—the fatty acids that LDL combines with, leading to clogged arteries.
In order to stay healthy, your body needs higher levels of HDL, lower levels of LDL, and lower levels of triglycerides.
What Are the Ideal Cholesterol Levels?
So...how do you know if your cholesterol levels are right? You can get your numbers checked with a blood test at any general practitioner or health clinic.
According to the American Heart Association, here are the desirable cholesterol levels:
- Total cholesterol: less than 170 mg/dL
- Low LDL (“bad”) cholesterol: less than 110 mg/dL
- High HDL (“good”) cholesterol: 35 mg/dL or higher
- Triglycerides: less than 150 mg/dL
However, the association is also quick to point out that an overall picture of your disease risk is more important than the cholesterol levels by themselves.
They recommend routine testing for anyone over the age of 20, especially if you have a history of heart disease or high blood pressure in your family.
How Do I Keep My Cholesterol Under Control?
If you’ve been told that your cholesterol levels are too high, or if you are generally at higher risk for heart disease and want to maintain lower numbers, there are plenty of ways you can keep your levels under control!
1. Eat With Your Heart in Mind
A healthy diet is one of the best ways to keep your cholesterol levels in a healthy range and lower your risk of heart disease.
You want to cut back on saturated fats, which raise your cholesterol levels. These are found in dairy and red meat. (That’s why many doctors will recommend reducing red meat intake if you have high levels!)
Trans fats are another culprit for high cholesterol. Many fried and processed foods contain these because they’re inexpensive and easy to make. But they lower your HDL and raise your LDL, making them a bad choice for healthy cholesterol.
Instead, opt for more fruits, vegetables, and healthy lean meats that promote heart health! Aim to eat healthy fats, like nuts, seeds, and avocados, instead of saturated and trans fats.
2. Avoid Tobacco
If you’re a smoker with high cholesterol levels, one of the best things you can do for your heart is quit.
Not only does smoking make your LDL stickier and more likely to clog your arteries, but it also lowers your HDL levels.
Within just one day of quitting smoking, your HDL levels will start to rise!
3. Plan Regular Cardio Exercise
Regular cardio exercise can help keep your cholesterol levels desirable. Although any amount of exercise helps, the American Heart Association recommends moderate exercise 30 minutes a day for at least five days a week or strenuous exercise for 20 minutes a day three times a week.
If you find exercising difficult, try to pick up a hobby that will get your body moving—like bike riding, dancing, jump roping, or rollerblading!
4. Maintain a Healthy Weight
If your BMI is out of a healthy range, losing weight is a great way to target those cholesterol levels!
Being overweight can increase your LDL levels by more than 8%. Aim to lose weight in a healthy, steady way.
5. Reduce Stress
It’s easier said than done, but avoiding stress is an important part of your overall health—including keeping your cholesterol under control!
Pay attention to the stressors in your life and see which ones you can avoid. You won’t always be able to avoid stress, so do your best to manage your stress with meditation, deep breathing, and spending time outside!
6. Battle Your Oxidative Stress
When your body has an excess amount of free radicals, it can lead to oxidative stress. Oxidative stress in turn leads to high LDL levels.
Reducing your oxidative stress with antioxidants can help lower those levels.
Grape seed extract is linked to lower LDL levels and a decrease in triglycerides. Pine bark extract and green tea extract have both been shown to lower LDL levels. Red wine extract could boost HDL levels, helping your body move out more LDL.
OPCXtra contains all four of those powerful OPCs, along with other antioxidants. They combine together to boost each other’s effects, giving you the best chance at eliminating oxidative stress and keeping your cholesterol under control!
What Our Optihealth Family Says About OPCXtra
Many of our customers have seen firsthand how OPCXtra can impact their cholesterol levels:
“Brought my cholesterol down! I have been taking OptiHealth for about 9 months and my cholesterol numbers have come down by 40 points! My FP was so impressed, he said to keep taking OH! I am SO excited with the results because I canNOT take medication to reduce my cholesterol (negative side effects). OptiHealth provides ONLY positive results for me! You won’t be sorry!” -Lyndi
“Love OPCXtra. Have been using these products for several months now and don’t want to miss a day. Just had my blood work done and for the second time, my cholesterol is under control! Thank you for great customer service.”
“Great! Cholesterol level is down in my blood sugar level is being kept around normal all of my blood work is just great.” -Dale
Take Advantage of Our 365-Day Money-Back Guarantee
We want you to join the Optihealth family. And we also understand that adjusting to a new supplement takes time. You deserve to take that time and see if our product works for you!
That’s why we offer a 365-day money-back guarantee. We know that you will experience great results, and we want to make sure you can take the time to do that risk-free!
Shop OPCXtra today and start working your way toward healthy cholesterol!
Sources and Further Reading:
- American Heart Association
- HDL (Good), LDL (Bad) Cholesterol and Triglycerides
- What Your Cholesterol Levels Mean
- What should I know about the new cholesterol guidelines?
- Heart UK
- Oxidative stress leads to cholesterol accumulation in vascular smooth muscle cells
- Grape Seed Extract
- Effect of red wine and red grape extract on blood lipids, haemostatic factors, and other risk factors for cardiovascular disease
- Effect of green tea consumption on blood lipids: a systematic review and meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials
- Supplementation with a pine bark extract rich in polyphenols increases plasma antioxidant capacity and alters the plasma lipoprotein profile