Low HDL – What it Means and Remedies

If you have had your cholesterol test recently, you might be familiar with the term HDL and LDL. Above the age of 30, doctors prescribe a cholesterol test every year. Why they do so ? C’mon let us see the importance of HDL in our health.

What is HDL ?

HDL is High Density Lipoprotein. In a layman’s term, it is the good cholesterol. It reduces the risk of heart diseases. I hope this simple explanation is enough to go ahead.

What does low levels of HDL implies ?

It implies that the risk of getting heart disease is a bit more.

What are the reasons for low HDL ?

  • very sedentary lifestyle which involves less or no exercise would result in low HDL
  • smoking decreases HDL
  • high body mass index is a reason for low HDL
  • food habits with very less amount of fat is also a reason for low HDL
  • eating more sugars or simple carbohydrates increases LDL and decreases HDL.

Can we increase HDL with decreasing fat intake ?

NO. Decreasing fat by a low fat diet decreases both HDL and LDL. Instead we need to lower LDL and increase HDL for a healthy heart.

Can we increase HDL with increasing fat intake ?

NO. Increasing fat intake increases both LDL and HDL.

What is the solution than ?

  • If you are smoking, you could reduce it.
  • If you are obese, try to reduce body weight.
  • If you are having a sedentary lifestyle, try to do cardio exercises.
  • If you are not having a proper food diet, consult a dietician and discuss with him/her. They could frame you a heart healthy diet.
  • Reduce the intake of saturated and trans fats.
  • Increase foods with more mono and polyunsaturated fatty acids. 

What are the foods those help to increase HDL ?

  • Oils – Olive Oil, Canola Oil and Peanut Oil
  • Nuts – Walnut, Peanut, Pistachios and Almonds
  • Fruits – Apple, Avocado
  • Seeds – Flax Seeds and Chia Seeds
  • Beans and Legumes
  • Oats
  • Fish – Salmons and Sardines

Nuts like Almonds, Peanuts, Brazil Nuts, Pistachios and Walnuts

Chia Seeds, soaked

Flax Seeds

Beans and Legumes

Apples and Avocados

Avocados 

Oats absorbs LDL and increases HDL

Salmon fish is rich in Omega 3
Sardine or Chala Meen or Mathi is rich in Omega 3

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