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How to Reduce Cholesterol Level?

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How to Reduce Cholesterol Level?

3 min read


High levels of cholesterol are harmful. It can be reduced by lifestyle changes and medications. This article will discuss the management techniques of cholesterol in detail.

Medically reviewed by

Dr. Lekshmipriya. B

Published At November 13, 2013
Reviewed AtJune 30, 2022


If people are obese, diabetic, hypertensive, or have a family history of heart disease or stroke, they need to get their cholesterol figures down. They do not need to be a millionaire in cholesterol figures. Even if one is not, trust me, they should still eat healthily and exercise because it is the only field in which one can become a millionaire and they would not even come to know. The good news is that it is good to increase the figure of one type of cholesterol- HDL (high-density lipoprotein). It is also called "the good cholesterol". But how? That is a big question. The below-given measures are found to produce effective results in reducing cholesterol levels. We often read these kinds of articles on the internet, in newspapers, and in health columns, but most of us just read and do not follow them. But, you have no option if you are a rich man when we talk about cholesterol figures, and you really wish not to meet doctors in-hospital emergencies.

Excessive cholesterol in the blood leads to heart attacks, stroke, and many other diseases. Cholesterol can be reduced by eating healthy and doing regular exercise. Lifestyle modifications are mandatory to bring down the increased cholesterol levels. Medications alone will not help.

  • If one is obese, losing those extra pounds will help.

  • If the person is diabetic or hypertensive, the levels have to be maintained at the normal range with medications and lifestyle changes.

One may also be required to take medications to reduce cholesterol if indicated. Very often people ask the doctors what they should eat to control their cholesterol levels. Which oil should they use? The following points may help them to find answers and may help them to keep themselves fit and disease-free.

What Are the Foods to Avoid to Keep the Cholesterol Levels in Check?

  • It is good to avoid oil because it is bad for coronary artery diseases. Strict moderation is required. Palm oil is not at all recommended as it contains high amounts of unsaturated fats. Coconut oil and palm kernel oil can be avoided too.

  • Food items containing cream should be avoided. In general ice creams and full-fat milk should be eliminated.

  • Egg yolks, butter, cheese, curd, etc., are bad for cholesterol levels and have to be avoided.

  • It is better to avoid meat from organs like the liver, kidney, and brain.

  • Fried foods and fast foods are bad enemies paving way for bad cholesterol levels to spike up.

  • The next set of enemies would include bakery food items made with egg yolks, saturated fats, and trans-fat.

  • In general, it is good to avoid too much intake of rice and potatoes. Though rice is the staple food of so many nations, it should be consumed in moderation.

  • Alcohol should be practically avoided. But in a few cases, having alcohol in moderation is acceptable, like having it once in a blue moon, provided the blue moon does not appear every day. Red wine has only been shown to be effective for maintaining heart health in some studies. But many studies have not found it useful though. It is up to you which studies you want to go with. Most important thing is, that once a person starts drinking, again moderation is required, which might be difficult. There are people who started with just 30 ml of red wine a day to keep their heart healthy but landed into consuming a full bottle in a day giving excuses for its benefits. We have better ways to control our cholesterol rather than depending on red wine.

What Are the Healthy Alternatives?

  • Consuming fruits and green leafy vegetables are a great option. Four to five servings of fruits and vegetables in a day is recommended.

  • Only unsaturated vegetable oils like canola, corn, olive, safflower, and soybean oils should be used in moderate quantities.

  • Fat-free or low-fat milk products can be included in the diet.

  • Consuming lean meats and poultry without skin will show good results in lowering and maintaining cholesterol levels.

  • Consuming fiber-containing products like whole-grain bread, cereal, pasta, and brown rice will help.

  • Nuts, seeds, and legumes (dried beans or peas) can be taken in moderated quantity

  • Oatmeal contains soluble fiber, which reduces LDL (low-density lipoprotein) or the bad cholesterol, even if they do not, it at least makes people avoid their favorite, mouth-watering fried and oil-soaked breakfasts like poori, paratha, kachori, etc.

  • Fatty fish contains omega-3 fatty acids which are known to be good for the heart. But it is not advised to deep fry the fish as it will add unhealthy fat. It is good if the fish is baked or grilled.

  • Lastly, be it any food items, boiling or grilling instead of frying will provide good health.

Trying to follow these dietary habits initially may seem difficult, but trusting the process and once we achieve our targets, people will be asking others to follow this. In fact, that particular person can become an idol of many cholesterol millionaires, who may come to you for advice.


Cholesterol is often mistaken for something simple, due to a lack of awareness regarding what would happen if cholesterol levels increase or decrease. Getting the levels checked frequently and seeking a doctor’s advice if the levels of cholesterol are borderline or higher, will help fight it at the earliest. A healthy lifestyle is the only preventive measure to prevent cholesterol levels from rising. Exercising at least a minimum of 2.5 hours per week will help maintain the cholesterol levels in the healthy range.

Frequently Asked Questions


How to Reduce Cholesterol Levels Quickly?

Changes in diet can bring quick alterations to cholesterol levels. Replacing HDL (high-density lipoproteins) with LDL (low-density lipoprotein) should be done. The diet should be rich in fiber-containing foods. Along with diet, good exercise can yield better results.


Can Walking Help in Reducing Cholesterol Levels?

Walking can aid in lowering bad cholesterol (LDL) levels. Brisk walking for 30 minutes can promote healthy living by lowering cholesterol levels. It can bring about a reduction in cholesterol levels even without significant weight loss.


What Causes High Cholesterol Levels?

Various factors may cause high cholesterol levels. High-fat diets, a sedentary lifestyle, obesity, lack of exercise, smoking, and alcohol abuse can cause an increase in cholesterol levels. At times high cholesterol levels can also be attributed to genetic reasons.


Which Foods Can Cause High Cholesterol Levels?

High cholesterol levels can be caused by red meat such as pork, beef, and lamb. They have high saturated fat levels. High cholesterol levels can also be caused due to fried food. Full-fat dairy items such as full-fat milk and cheese can increase cholesterol levels. Processed meat and food can also cause a rise in cholesterol levels.


What Foods Are Rich in Good Cholesterol?

Food items rich in fiber are invariably rich in good cholesterol. Fiber-rich food items may include barley, oats, nuts, etc. fruits and vegetables are also good sources of good cholesterol. Seed varieties such as chia, flax, and pumpkin seeds can also serve as sources of good cholesterol.


Can You Eat Rice With High Cholesterol Levels?

Some evidence says that white rice can lead to an increase in cholesterol levels. White rice can be alternated with other varieties of rice, such as brown rice. Other whole grains such as oats, jowar, barley, and ragi can also be explored as they increase the fiber content in food.


Can Lack of Sleep Increase Cholesterol Levels?

Yes, lack of sleep or chronic sleeplessness can cause an increase in cholesterol levels. Sleep deprivation is one of the factors for heart conditions. Individuals who sleep less than six hours per night have a higher risk of developing cardiovascular conditions.


Does Stress Lead to an Increase in Cholesterol Levels?

Yes, chronic stress can affect a person’s cholesterol levels. Stress can cause variations in cholesterol levels. This is mainly linked to the eating habits of the person. Under stress, a person may consume high amounts of fats and carbohydrates. Lack of exercise can worsen this condition. 


Are Vitamin-D and Cholesterol Levels Interrelated?

Vitamin-D supplements have been shown to have good effects on reducing cholesterol levels. Higher the vitamin-D levels, the higher the HDL levels. It can also lower bad cholesterol levels. Vitamin-D levels are beneficial for the overall metabolism.


Which Organ Is Responsible for Cholesterol Metabolism?

The liver is the organ that is responsible for cholesterol metabolism. The liver produces the cholesterol necessary for the smooth functioning of the body. It also stores fat. The cholesterol levels are also monitored by small intestines.
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Dr. Anshul Varshney
Dr. Anshul Varshney

Internal Medicine


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