Dr. Zachary F. Solomon is a cardiac surgeon who commonly works with patients who have struggled with cholesterol. Many people receive news after routine bloodwork that their blood showed signs of elevated cholesterol. This is a critical moment as people can either make lifestyle changes that improve their cholesterol levels or make choices that compound their problems. Today, Dr. Zachary Solomon will discuss different lifestyle shifts that can help anyone looking to get more positive news next time they undergo a blood test.
For starters, Dr. Zachary Solomon believes a person needs to strongly consider making some changes to their diet. The first step is starting to read nutrition labels at the grocery store. Not only will labels have cholesterol information on the label, but they will also show which foods have saturated fats. Decreasing the amount of saturated fats consumed is the first step towards lowering cholesterol levels in the body. Another thing to look out for is partially hydrogenated vegetable oil, this is just another way to say trans fat. They have no nutritional benefits whatsoever.
When it comes to things to look for on nutritional labels, Dr. Zachary Solomon recommends seeking out foods with Omega-3 fatty acids. Typically, you will find omega-3 fatty acids in walnuts, flax seeds, salmon, and mackerel. Those who suffer from high blood pressure can also benefit from incorporating omega-3 fatty acids into their diet. Dr. Zachary Solomon also recommends looking into foods containing soluble fiber. The reason soluble fiber is valuable is that it actually helps reduce the amount of cholesterol absorbed into the bloodstream. Some common foods that contain soluble fiber include kidney beans, brussel sprouts, pears, and apples.
Increasing physical activity is the next step, and when a person begins to increase their physical activity they should consider replacing a meal with a whey protein shake. Whey protein as a supplement has been linked to lowering both blood pressure and cholesterol levels in the body. In terms of physical activity, Dr. Zachary Solomon represents finding something that a patient enjoys doing. The ideal physical activity pattern will be at least 30 minutes of exercise five days a week, and aerobic activity is encouraged. If attending a gym isn’t the proper fit, walking, running, riding a bike or starting to play a favorite sport can all help a person lower their cholesterol levels.
Diet and physical activity are important in lowering weight. Even a few extra pounds of weight can cause an increase in cholesterol levels. Losing weight is easier when it is done through lifestyle changes as opposed to following a fad diet. Small things like switching from soda to water or starting to take the stairs and avoiding the elevator can and will add up over time. Those who smoke should quit immediately There are countless studies that show significant drops in cholesterol levels after as little as three months.
Anyone who has high blood pressure needs to be honest about their drinking habits. Adults can drink in moderation, but binge drinking can lead to serious issues with high blood pressure – amongst other health concerns. Dr. Zachary Solomon recommends making a concerted effort to drinking in moderation.