There are several common ways of lowering your cholesterol. Popular suggestions include taking prescription medications, following a specific diet, and exercising. There are ways to naturally lower your cholesterol that do not involve taking prescription medications, implementing methods that take considerable time before you see results, or other means of lowering your ‘bad’  cholesterol that seem too difficult.

Lower your cholesterol naturally with these lesser-known, and perhaps surprising, means of helping you reach and potentially maintain healthier cholesterol levels.

Read nutrition labels on those ‘healthy’ and ‘diet’ foods

Do you eat frozen meals that claim to be healthy or that follow a specific diet plan? One popular brand of low-calorie frozen roast beef and potatoes meal contains a whopping 65 milligrams of cholesterol. Women in particular are at greater risk of developing high cholesterol, and are possibly more likely than men to consume ‘healthy’ frozen meals, low-fat fruit muffins, and other foods with high amounts of cholesterol.

Read the nutrition label before you buy, or you potentially end up consuming unhealthy amounts of cholesterol from ‘healthy,’ or ‘diet’ meals. When a food item is low-fat or low calorie, that does not necessarily mean that it has low cholesterol.

Laugh more stress less

Laughter is a great way to naturally lower cholesterol. Results of some studies indicate that laughter raised good cholesterol, while lowering stress levels. Stress potentially affects your LDL, or ‘bad’ cholesterol level.

Results of several studies demonstrate the positive effects of laughter on health, including a study where laughter increased HDL or ‘good’ cholesterol levels. Study authors Lee S. Berk and Stanley Tan included mirthful laughter as a preventive adjunct therapy in 20 diabetic study participants. Study results showed that participants experienced a 26 percent increase in HDL levels after spending just 30 minutes a day laughing.

Include Indian Gooseberry or Amla in your diet

Studies show that Indian Gooseberry has the ability to naturally lower cholesterol in individuals with high LDL levels. One study showed that Amla, the supplement form of Indian Gooseberry, had the same effect of lowering LDL cholesterol levels as a prescription medication. It raised HDL levels with no reports of negative side effects.

Eat Indian Gooseberry in Indian rice dishes. Make Amla juice, or add Amla powder to foods and experience the benefits of a Vitamin C level equal to that of two oranges, and powerful antioxidant properties.

Kiwi do more than taste good and provide nutrients

Several sources mention the fact that kiwi fruit provides good levels of nutrients, including Vitamin C, Vitamin E, and potassium. Few sources reveal that some studies demonstrate that kiwi is an excellent way to naturally lower cholesterol.

Participants of one study included 13 men and 30 women. Researchers tested cholesterol levels of each participant before they began the study, and again at the four-week and eight-week interval. Study participants consumed two kiwi fruit each day for eight weeks.

After eight weeks of consuming the kiwi as directed, researchers determined:

  • HDL concentration significantly increased
  • LDL concentration significantly decreased
  • Vitamin C and Vitamin E levels increased significantly

Know your fish

You likely heard that eating red meat possibly raises your bad cholesterol levels and that fish is a good option.

Shrimp is not a good healthy cholesterol choice. Shrimp contains an estimated 190 milligrams of cholesterol per serving, even if you skip the deep fryer.

The common cholesterol-lowering foods, drinks, and medications are sometimes boring to some individuals looking for alternative ways of naturally lowering cholesterol. Consider these options and you likely discover that you raise your good cholesterol while lowering your bad cholesterol level and possibly giving a boost to your overall health.