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5 Natural Remedies For Lowering Cholesterol

5 Natural Remedies For Lowering Cholesterol

High cholesterol levels are connected to heart disease and a number of other health problems that can only get worse if you aren’t proactive about starting a healthy lifestyle today. So, to avoid future health problems, start taking an assertive and healthy approach to your everyday diet.

1. Rhubarb

Rhubarb stalks

    If lower cholesterol is your goal, rhubarb is a dietary choice you can make on a daily basis. This green, leafy, long-stalked veggie has been studied by the National Institute of Health and found to be beneficial. How’s that for an endorsement?

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    The study results showed that while the bad cholesterol levels (LDL) were reduced by 9 percent and total cholesterol dropped by 8 percent, the good cholesterol levels were unchanged. Recommended quantity of rhubarb stalk is 27 grams a day for the maximum benefit.

    But be warned that the leaves of the rhubarb plant should not be eaten either cooked or raw, as they contain a toxic chemical. Eat healthy, stay smart.

    2. Artichoke

    Artichokes being prepared
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      Preventing cholesterol from being produced in the body is one of the advantages of the artichoke leaf extract, which can be obtained by eating a properly prepared artichoke. Like rhubarb, it reduces both total cholesterol and bad cholesterol levels. What’s interesting about this herbal alternative is that prescription drugs called statins used to treat high cholesterol contain ingredients that have the same enzyme inhibitor.

      One study resulted in feedback from patients who were taking anti-cholesterol prescription drugs that the effects of taking artichoke leaf extract were equal to or better than their medication. Do it naturally so you don’t have to do it by prescription.

      3. Oat Bran

      Oats - rich in fiber
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        Prevention is always better than cure, and the benefit of oat bran is that it prevents absorption of cholesterol into the bloodstream. If you are a fan of oat bran, two-thirds of a cup per day may give you the amount your body needs to make an impact on your total cholesterol levels.

        Beta-glucan (soluble fiber) is one of the key components in oat bran. Each gram you take in may reduce your bad cholesterol level by about 1 percent. Keep in mind this is just for comparison purposes, as 100 g of oat bran will provide about 15 grams of soluble fiber. It should be mentioned that there are certain gastrointestinal side effects that go with overeating oats.

        4. Garlic

        Peeled garlic gloves
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          Garlic has long been known to clean the blood and prevent plaque buildup in the arteries, which lowers the risk of cardiovascular problems. It also has been proven to have a cholesterol-lowering effect in its unprocessed state, so using garlic in cooking brings about the same benefits as taking garlic pills or capsules. The added benefit to using it in your meals is there are no side effects to worry about.

          The effects garlic has in lowering cholesterol levels is generally thought to be temporary. So make it a daily or every-other-day ingredient in your home cooking to achieve its greatest effect. A daily intake of 500 to 1000 mg of garlic is recommended, but pay attention to any side effects that consuming too much garlic may have. Remember, moderation in all things.

          5. Green Tea

          Green tea leaves

            Studies show that green tea has a multitude of health benefits for everyone. Like artichoke and rhubarb, it lowers bad cholesterol levels, but green tea actually increases the good cholesterol levels. A double benefit that attacks the problem from two fronts.

            The reason green tea has a better health reputation than regular tea is that there is no processing of green tea leaves; they are simply dried out and steamed. The result of this is an antioxidant, ECGC, is retained in higher concentrations and maximizes the benefit to your body. That’s why green tea has such a positive effect on preventing cancer and many other health conditions. Going green can be internal as well as environmental.

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            Last Updated on May 22, 2019

            10 Simple Morning Exercises That Will Make You Feel Great All Day

            10 Simple Morning Exercises That Will Make You Feel Great All Day

            There are lots of studies that show if you do some exercise in the morning, you will be in a better mood all day long. You will have more energy and you will certainly be a better colleague, friend or partner.

            One psychologist at Duke University has researched the effects of exercise on depressed patients and he has come to the conclusion that exercise has a definite role in treating this condition and has an important role in preventing people from relapsing.[1] According to the New York Times, scientists have now established that exercise also boosts your brain power.[2]

            In addition, there are studies from the Appalachian State University which show that blood pressure can be reduced by doing regular morning exercise.[3]

            Here are 10 simple morning exercises that will help you feel great the whole day long. You can include some of them in your morning exercise routine or do them all at home without having to enrol in a gym. Consult your doctor before starting any form of exercise routine if you are new to this.

            1. Cat Camel Stretch

            Stretching exercises are useful for muscle toning and also preventing arthritis. They can either be dynamic or static.

            Dynamic ones such as the cat camel stretch, are particularly useful for doing other exercises in the morning. They are also beneficial at other times of the day, especially after long periods of sedentary work. This one is great for spinal flexibility and is a good warm up exercise.

            Kneel down on all fours. Start by rounding your back just like a camel so that your head will try to meet your pelvis. This is the camel position. Then lower and lift your head so that your lower back is arched. This is the cat position. Do these movements slowly and smoothly. About 4 or 5 times.

            Here’s a video to guide you through:

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            2. Go for a Walk or a Run

            This is better done outside so that you can connect with nature but running inside on a treadmill is almost as good. You can time yourself and increase length and time according to your fitness program.

            Always have new goals to reach. Start with brisk walking and work up to running. At my age, I am still walking!

            The health benefits are considerable. You can build stronger bones and you can help to maintain your weight.

            Also, you are helping your heart to stay healthy and keeping your blood pressure low.

            Learn more about the benefits of running here: 8 Benefits of Running 5 Minutes Every Day You Didn’t Know

            3. Jumping Jacks

            Michelle Obama is a great fan of this exercise and has become “Jumper in Chief.”[4] They are great for cardiovascular health and also for toning muscles especially the calves and the deltoids.

            Stand with feet together. Jump while spreading your arms and legs. Return to first position and keep going! You can start with doing these for 1 minute and then gradually build up to the number you are comfortable with. Here’s how:

            4. Abductor Side Lifts

            Watch the video below to see how to do this exercise. These muscles are important because you use them everyday to run, get into the car or onto and off a bicycle. They are very important also for your core stability and prevent the pelvis from tilting.[5]

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            Do about 10 to 15 raises for each side like this:

            5. Balancing Table Pose

            This is a classic yoga pose. It benefits the spine, balance, memory and concentration.

            Start with the table pose (hands and knees). Breathe in before starting each movement. As you exhale, raise your left leg parallel to the floor as you raise the right arm, also parallel to the floor. Breathe in as you lower arm and leg. Repeat for the other side. 10 repetitions on each side is a good starting point.

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              6. Leg Squats

              Not just legs are involved but also hips and knees.

              Stand with your feet a bit further out from your hips. Arms are out in front of you. Then lower yourself as if you wanted to sit down until you reach a 90 degree angle. You can go down further if you want to. Then return to the starting position. Repeat 15 times for 2 sets for beginners.

              The benefits are that these exercises help with knee stability and can benefit the leg muscles such as quadriceps, hamstrings and calves.[6]

              7. Push Ups

              You start lying down (face down) but with your body held up at arm’s length. Your hands should be in line with your shoulders. Breathe in as you lower your body. That is fairly easy. Now, as you exhale, you have to get back up to the starting position.

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              An easier version to start with is to bend your legs at the knees so you do not have to lift your whole body.

              Beginners may take up to a month to be able to do 100 push ups so you will have to start with a very small number and gradually increase it.

              This exercise is great for strengthening the chest, shoulders and the triceps. It is a great strengthening exercise for many muscle groups. In fact, most muscles from the toes to the shoulders are being used.

              8. Bicycle Crunches

              There are numerous crunch exercises targeting the abs. The bicycle crunch is a variation where you work more muscle groups. Aim for 15 to 20 reps to start off with.

              Watch the video to see how this is done correctly:

              9. Lunges

              Stand with feet shoulder width apart. Place your hand on your hips. Take one giant step forward with the right leg. Make sure the knee does not go too far forward, that is, past your toes. The left knee will go down to almost floor level. Alternate the legs as you go on.

              Try to do a set of between 8 and 12 reps for each leg. It is important to allow for a day of rest, so this exercise should be done on alternate days, especially if you are using weights.

              This exercise is great for strengthening and toning the quadriceps, glutes and hamstrings.

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              10. Bicep Curls

              You can do this sitting down so if you spend a lot of time on the phone, this is a great exercise to do.

              Choose suitable dumbbells or another household object that you can easily hold. Sit down with the dumbbell in your hand. You need to sit forward a bit so that your triceps can lean on your thigh to give you support.

              Then bring the weighted arm up to shoulder length and then down again. Exhale as you lift the weight and inhale as you lower it.

              Here’re some important notes before you start doing this exercise:

              Try to do one or two sets of about ten repetitions for each arm and then switch arms.

              These exercises are really useful for toning the arm muscles.[7] In addition, they can strengthen and tone the brachioradialis muscle located in the forearm. These are the muscles we use to pick up things when we flex the arm at the elbow so we use these muscles countless times a day.

              You may have to build in a rest day for the heavier exercises, numbers 6–10. On the rest days, you can do gentler stretching exercises and also some walking or running.

              Morning exercise is not only a great mood booster, but will help you keep your weight down and also sleep better![8] Start including one or some of these exercises in your morning routine!

              More Articles About Exercises for Beginners

              Featured photo credit: Unsplash via unsplash.com

              Reference

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