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September 12, 2014 • Heart Health

Raising Your HDL (good) Cholesterol Levels

A healthy HDL level (>50) is associated with less risk of heart attack, stroke, Alzheimer’s and colon cancer. Follow these simple strategies to raise your HDL (good) cholesterol level. (Mine is 93!)

Happy Heart

  • Lose weight if overweight.
  • Engage in at least 30 minutes of moderate aerobic activity (brisk walking) most days of the week. (Talk to your healthcare provider first if you have any cardiovascular risk factors)
  • Stop using tobacco products.
  • Include alcohol in moderation — 1 drink a day. Red wine best. (Talk to your healthcare provider before drinking alcohol to see if it is safe for you.)
  • Strictly avoid trans fats (processed and fast foods that contain partially hydrogenated oil, shortening and stick margarine).
  • Restrict the “Great White Hazards” — white flour products, white rice, white potatoes, sugars/sweet.
  • Regularly consume foods that are known to raise your HDL: whole soy foods, green tea, shitake mushrooms, chili peppers, onions, garlic, oily fish, olive oil, avocado, nuts, seeds, whole grains and beans.