What Is HDL? -- 5 Must-Eat Foods To Increase HDL Level

What is HDL? 
It is considered a good cholesterol. High Density Lipoprotein gathers all bad cholesterol in your body from the arteries and carries it back to the liver. It has anti-inflammatory effects that are beneficial to your heart. And this is one of the reasons your HDL level must be high so it can protect your arteries from plaque build-up.

The ideal HDL levels must be over 40 mg/dL for men and 50 mg/dL for women. Although genetics can affect the level of your HDL, you can still change that by improving your lifestyle choices. These are the foods that can help you increase this good cholesterol level.

1. Nuts
They are good sources of healthy fats, which are good for your heart. What is good thing about them is that you can easily add them to your cereal, salad, pasta dishes and rice. They can be eaten raw, toasted or baked.

2. Salmon, mackerel and other seafood choices. 
You must aim for fatty fish options like halibut, albacore tuna, salmon and mackerel. They contain omega-3 fatty acids, which are known to be beneficial for your heart. They can reduce the risk of death. The recommended serving is at least 2 servings per week. Fish oil supplements are also great if seafood is too hard to find.

3. Olive oil. 
This, too, is great in elevating your HDL level as it contains high level of unsaturated fats. Instead of using butter, you can cook your food in an olive oil. But, even though it is healthy, it is still oil. So, you must only use it in moderation.

4. Avocado. 
It may be high in fat but it is also good for your heart. You can spread it on your sandwich or add it to your omelets.

5. Oatmeal. 
It is not only rich in fiber but it is also great in bumping up your HDL. While it increases your good cholesterol, it also reduces LDL. It is an excellent source of fiber just like bran, dried peas and beans.

6. Exercise .
You must incorporate these foods with daily exercise to produce more HDL. Aim to become active for 30 minutes each day and your heart will thank you for it.

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