HDL or High Density Lipoproteins are known as good cholesterol found in the bloodstream. HDL cholesterol is believed to help clear cholesterol from our body system, protects against heart disease. Good cholesterol decreases the risk of heart attacks, serves several vital biological functions. It helps clear excess cholesterol from the blood and helps control the formation of beta-amyloid, the leading component of the protein plaques found in the brains. A level under 40 mg/dL is low and is regarded a major risk factor because it increases your risk for developing heart disease.
Low HDL Cholesterol
Low HDL cholesterol (less than 40 mg/dL for men, less than 50 mg/dL for women) puts you at higher risk for heart disease. In the average man, HDL cholesterol levels range from 40 to 50 mg/dL. Weight reduction can result in elevation of the HDL cholesterol level. Some drugs such as fibrates and nicotinic acid can help elevate the HDL cholesterol level.
Hdl Cholesterol Ratio
Finding a good balance between HDL and LDL is very essential. The total cholesterol to HDL cholesterol ratio is a number that is useful in predicting an individual’s risk of developing atherosclerosis. Total blood cholesterol is made up mainly of “bad” cholesterol and “good” cholesterol. An average ratio would be about 4.5. Ideally we want to be better than average if we can. Thus the best ratio would be 2 or 3, or less than 4. Total fat intake, particularly saturated fat and trans fat, plays a larger role in blood cholesterol levels than intake of cholesterol itself.
Hdl Cholesterol Foods
1. You can eat certain good HDL cholesterol foods to raise HDL cholesterol and avoiding certain foods that raise LDL. Eating fish include salmon, sardines, herring, albacore tuna and mackerel a couple times a week can have positive effects on your cholesterol numbers. Saturated fats and trans fats should be avoided. These fats have a negative impact on your heart health.
2. The best cooking oils? Knowing the healthy ones and the non-healthy ones can make a big difference in your cholesterol levels. Here are some good oils: canola oil, olive oil, grapeseed oil, flax seed oil.
3. Unsalted, unsweetened walnuts or almonds can help you lower your cholesterol. A study found that eating 25 almonds a day for 1 month cut bad LDL cholesterol by 4 percent and raised good HDL cholesterol by 5%.