Cholesterol doesn’t have to be a scary demon that’s impossible to tame. If you’ve been stressed over your cholesterol levels or concerned that yours may be over the limit, it might help to know the truth behind the numbers. Because you aren’t alone in your fears, we thought it was time we busted some cholesterol myths!
Myth #1: All Cholesterol Is Bad
Cholesterol isn’t all bad. In fact, your body needs it for some crucial functions like creating hormones like testosterone, estrogen, and nutrients like vitamin D.
Myth #2: Cut Out All Fats From Your Life To Cut Cholesterol
You shouldn’t cut out ALL fats. Just break up with the trans fats and the unhealthier saturated fats that can mess with the balance of cholesterol. Foods like olive oil, fatty fish (tuna and sardines), and avocados are a source of healthy fats that are good for the body and don’t elevate LDL.
Myth #3: You Don’t Need Any Cholesterol, Your Liver Makes Enough
Your liver caters to about 75% of your body’s cholesterol requirements. The balance needs to come from healthy sources in your diet. Think fatty fish, healthier oils, nuts, and homemade nut butters.
Myth #4: Diet Control Is The Only Way To Fix Cholesterol Problems
Lifestyle changes like exercising regularly and quitting smoking can also help improve cholesterol levels. To improve HDL levels, regular physical activity is important. Lowering LDL and triglycerides requires more intense activity, like high-intensity aerobic exercise which can improve your lipid profile overall.
Myth #5: I’d Be Able To Feel It If I Had High Cholesterol
Most people with high cholesterol never have any symptoms at all. And the symptoms that do appear are potentially life-threatening, like having a stroke or heart attack. A few people may develop cholesterol-rich deposits on the skin called xanthomas, but this isn’t common. Which is why healthi recommends that everyone be tested regularly for their cholesterol levels, especially if you are in an at-risk category due to age, weight, family or medical history.
There’s plenty more about cholesterol that might surprise you! Click here to discover things you may not know and pick up tips to manage your cholesterol better.