Lowering Cholesterol Naturally

James Duke, Ph.D. discusses lowering cholesterol naturally using these healthy plant-based foods.

| December 2001/January 2002

Learn how these healthy foods and herbs can help with lowering cholesterol naturally.

The cholesterol story began in 1951, when the Pentagon sent pathologists to Korea to study the bodies of servicemen killed in the war there.

Although almost no one under 35 dies of coronary heart disease, autopsies revealed that more than 75 percent of the soldiers, average age 21, had yellow deposits of atherosclerotic plaque on their artery walls. The Army pathologists' reports shocked the medical community because, until these autopsies, doctors had assumed these artery-clogging deposits were found only in much older men.

Soon after, cholesterol was identified as a major contributor to the buildup of plaque and to the risk of heart disease. More recently, scientists have discovered that for every 1 percent drop in cholesterol level, there is a 2 percent decrease in heart attack risk.

Understanding Cholesterol Numbers

The total cholesterol level of the average American is higher than 200 milligrams per deciliter (mg/dl) of blood. Because heart attack risk rises sharply above that level, the American Heart Association urges everyone to take measures to reduce cholesterol if it's anywhere near that high.

How far below 200 should you go to feel that your risk is significantly less? Research suggests that very low cholesterol levels, below 150 or so, increase risk of death from other causes, including liver cancer, lung disease and certain kinds of stroke. My reaction is that people should strive for a cholesterol range of 170 to 190.

5/26/2015 9:40:56 PM

I love the concept of eating good fats and seeing those benefits when you have a seemingly 'fat related' condition. More education on healthy diet choices and less statins would benefit so many I shared a few thoughts on natural alternatives to cholesterol management recently too:

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