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10 Hacks to a Healthier Heart

Your yearly visit to your doctor’s office comes with a weigh-in, blood pressure check, and blood work.

A more comprehensive workup will include a CMP (complete metabolic panel) that checks many things, and one of the most important is your triglyceride level.

At normal levels, triglycerides are a good thing. They are the fat in your bloodstream that your body uses for energy. They are also known as lipids.

When you have the right amount of them, everything is great, but if you have more than you need or use, they get stored for later.

They may end up on your hips or turn to belly fat. They can also jeopardize your health.

high-triglycerids-cause-belly-fat

When you have too many triglycerides in your blood it can lead to heart disease.

Normal levels of triglycerides are expressed as less than 150 milligrams per deciliter. If your levels are between 150 and 199 they are worrying, and between 200 and 499 is considered high.

If your levels are above 500, there is real cause for concern.

The good news is that a high triglyceride level isn’t something that you’re stuck with forever. 

You can make lifestyle changes to lower it. Diet and exercise are the key.

Top 10 Ways to Lower Your Triglyceride Levels.

1. Get moving. Getting moderate exercise at least five days a week can make a big difference. Just make sure that you talk to your doctor first to make sure that what you are doing is safe for your current health.

2. Lose some weight. If you are over the weight your doctor suggests, losing even a small amount can help. It’s especially important to lose belly fat.

3. Cut out “bad” fats. Eating healthier overall is important, and it is especially important to cut out bad fat. Trans fats and cholesterol are tied to high lipid levels.

4. Cut out beer, wine and other alcohol. If you are drinking more than one a day beer makes triglycerides higher (for women) or two a day for men, you are increasing your levels.

5. Eat more wild caught fish. Fish that are high in omega-3s, like salmon, albacore tuna and sardines are all good for your lipid levels.

6. Cut out sugar. Want to know who has low triglyceride levels? People who take in less than 10% of their daily calories in sugar.

The American Heart Association says that added sugars should only make up 5% of your daily calories.

For women that means 100 grams and for men just 150 grams per day.

7. Eat more fiber. Eating whole grains, prunes and other fiber rich foods like fresh fruits and vegetables go a long way towards cutting your lipid levels.

8. Cut your “bad” carbs. Simple carbs easily turn into triglycerides in your bloodstream and get stored as fat. People who eat diets low in simple carbs tend to also have lower blood lipid levels.

9. Eat more “good” fats. Fats like those found in olive oil, avocados, and nuts can lower lipid levels.

10. Try herbal supplements. There are studies that have shown that garlic extract, guggul and curcumin can all drop blood triglycerides.

Yours in health and happiness,

Danette

P.S. Please help me spread the word about keeping hearts healthy by sharing this with your loved ones.

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