Tips to find good cholesterol

We all need cholesterol for many reasons, to help produce a variety of substances in our body.

  • Mar. 4, 2015 1:00 p.m.

We all need cholesterol. It helps produce cell membranes, hormones, vitamin D and bile acids.

It’s when we get too much of the wrong kind that health problems start to develop.

The “bad” cholesterol is LDL (low-density lipoprotein), which builds up on artery walls and increases our risk of cardiovascular disease. The “good” kind is HDL (high-density), which actually helps rid our bodies of LDL.

Here are some tips to help naturally normalize your cholesterol levels:

1. Maintain good sugar levels. Our bodies turn sugar into fat, which in turn leads to high cholesterol – particularly LDL.

2. Eat fewer saturated fats and red, processed or cured meats. These items have been linked to higher levels of bad cholesterol. If a fat is solid at room temperature, it’s not very healthy; reach for olive and avocado oils rather than butter.

3. Eat more garlic. Studies show that garlic can lower total cholesterol by 10 to 12 per cent, so aim for one clove of crushed raw garlic a day. Garlic supplements are a decent backup choice, and onions offer similar benefits.

4. Get enough dietary fibre, which binds with cholesterol in the gastro-intestinal tract before being excreted through the stool. Aim for 30 grams a day. (A cup of black beans is 15 grams; an apple is 5 g; a cup of brown rice is 8 g; a cup of green peas is 9 g). Fruit and vegetable sources typically provide more vitamins and nutrients than cereal sources.

5. Exercise daily for 30 minutes to reduce LDL and elevate HDL levels.

6. Consume more Omega-3 fatty acids. Cold-water fish are a great source.

7. Eat antioxidants such as berries and supplements. LDL is bad because it has oxidized; antioxidants help reduce the number of free radicals that cause that oxidization.

Dr. Erika Kneeland is a naturopathic physician and owner of Braidwood Naturopathic Clinic in Courtenay. For appointments, call 250-334-0655 or visit

Just Posted

Local musicians inducted into Comox Valley Walk of Achievement

Seven local musicians have earned their spot among some of the Comox… Continue reading

North Island Hospital Comox Valley looking for funds to open fourth operating room

One of the priorities of the Comox Valley Hospital is to significantly… Continue reading

Increased accessibility an uphill battle for former Courtenay resident

Brian George wheeled himself up Ryan Road as part of his Halifax Oddesy Tour

Is your Foodsafe certification still valid?

According to B.C. Ministry of Health, approximately 800,000 B.C. Foodsafe Level 1… Continue reading

PHOTOS: Garlic Fest takes over Merville Hall

There was garlic galore at Merville Hall on Sunday as Garlic Fest… Continue reading

A look at B.C. wildfire smoke from space

NASA provides a timelapse of smoke covering B.C. from space

Bridge collapses in Genoa, Italy killing 11

Five more people are injured and in serious condition

Man plows truck into Houses of Parliament in London

UK police treat Parliament crash as terrorism, man arrested

Child dies in boating incident in Okanagan

A North Vancouver family was boating on Kalamalka Lake in Vernon when the incident occured

B.C. Wildfires 2018: Province calls for federal aid

More fires have burned in B.C. already this year than did in all of 2017

Kayak in Indian Arm waters off B.C.’s Deep Cove and feast on famous doughnuts

About a half hour drive from Vancouver, Deep Cove is a great kayaking spot for locals and tourists

Smokey skies across Vancouver Island expected to last until Wednesday

The province of B.C. has issued a special bulletin for all of Vancouver Island

Child, 4, attacked by cougar near Fernie

The BC Conservation Officer Service said it happened while the family was fishing

Trans Mountain pipeline protesters practise resisting police at Camp Cloud

Last week, a Supreme Court judge granted the City of Burnaby an injunction ordering protesters to remove everything from the site

Most Read