High blood cholesterol is considered a major risk factor for heart disease and stroke. The official methods of treating this disorder are lowering LDL cholesterol (bad cholesterol) and raising HDL cholesterol (good cholesterol) and changing your lifestyle. How can you support the treatment process?
There is no official confirmation that any dietary supplements or alternative treatments can safely treat high cholesterol levels. However, some supplements may be helpful in combination with traditional therapy.
Vitamin B3 (Niacin).
Vitamin B3 lowers triglyceride levels, lowers LDL cholesterol, raises good cholesterol and reduces the risk of atherosclerosis by reducing lipoprotein A. Vitamin B3 should be used under the supervision of a doctor, because it has undesirable side effects, including skin redness, flushing, nausea, indigestion, diarrhea or gout. It can also negatively affect stomach ulcers or cause hepatitis.
According to many sources, fiber reduces the level of “bad” cholesterol because it absorbs cholesterol in the digestive system.
Soluble fibers combine with cholesterol and are excreted from the body. Popular sources of fiber are: oats, barley, rye, legumes (peas, beans), apples, dried plums, carrots, brussels sprouts, broccoli.
5-10 grams of soluble fiber reduce LDL cholesterol by about 5%.
Plant sterols and stanols.
Plant stanols and sterols can help lower cholesterol levels because their structure is similar to that of cholesterol, and this blocks the absorption of cholesterol from the intestines. Thanks to them, the action of other methods of lowering cholesterol is more effective.
Artichoke leaf extract works by limiting the synthesis of cholesterol in the body and increasing bile production in the liver.