Exercises to Lower Cholesterol
Exercise can help keep cholesterol levels down and to ensure that good cholesterol makes up a larger proportion of the cholesterol in the blood. It is not necessary to spend hours exercising every day in order to benefit from the effects of exercise on cholesterol levels, it is enough to enjoy some moderate exercise on a regular basis.
The American Heart Association advises that people who want to use exercise to lower their cholesterol levels should take about half an hour of exercise five times a week. Moderate intensity exercise such as walking, cycling, swimming, jogging or even dancing is sufficient to help lower cholesterol levels, so it is possible to pick an activity that you enjoy, incorporate your exercise into your daily activities, or switch between different types of exercise in order to vary your routine. Even spending some time working in the garden or cleaning the house can be classed as moderate exercise, and it is also possible to spread the thirty minutes of exercise out through the day, rather than spending a solid thirty minutes exercising.
More intense exercise can have a stronger effect on cholesterol levels, but it is important to begin exercising slowly and gradually build up to longer or tougher workouts. Intense exercise can help people to keep healthy and to ensure that their cholesterol levels stay low, but it is not necessary to exercise hard in order to experience a benefit. Moderate exercise in combination with a healthy diet will usually be sufficient.
Although it is known that exercise can help to lower cholesterol levels, scientists have not yet discovered the reason that it can do so. The reduction in cholesterol levels that are experienced due to exercise may be because it helps people to maintain a healthy weight or to shed excess weight. People who are overweight tend to have higher levels of cholesterol in their blood.
There are also some other ways through which exercise can help to lower cholesterol levels. Exercising could help to stimulate certain enzymes that can move bad LDL cholesterol out of the blood vessels and into the liver, from where they can be excreted out of the body or converted into bile and used in digestion.
Exercise could also affect the size of the protein carriers that transport cholesterol in the blood. By making these protein carriers larger, exercising could help to limit the damage that cholesterol in the blood is able to cause. When the lipoproteins carrying cholesterol are bigger, they are less dangerous because they are unable to pass into the small spaces in the linings of the blood vessels, where they can cause serious problems.