Best Exercise to Reduce Cholesterol and Triglycerides
The best exercise to reduce cholesterol and triglycerides is primarily cardiovascular exercise. This is not to say that resistance exercise is not effective or relevant, it’s just not the optimal type of exercise for improving your heart health.
Cardiovascular exercise puts a significant demand on the heart. Much more so than other types of exercise. This, in turn also increases caloric expenditure. Thus, greatly increasing triglyceride reduction.
Often times we look at exercise as more of a chore rather than a necessity for our health. This misconception can’t be further from the truth. Exercise is a very important part of lowering your cholesterol and triglyceride levels.
Below, I’ll go over some of the best modes of exercise to reduce cholesterol and triglycerides. Adding in an exercise regimen with a heart healthy diet will help create an internal environment that encourages the reduction of harmful triglycerides and artery clogging cholesterol. Doing these things consistently will help you to improve your cholesterol levels insurmountably.
Interval training is a type of exercise that works by utilizing two or more activities back to back with little to no rest. A perfect example of interval training is a method originating form Sweden called fartlek training. This protocol works by having you simply switch up your speeds throughout your run. For example, you can walk for 5 minutes, jog for 5 minutes, walk for 5 minutes, jog for 5 minutes, and simply repeat.
Tabata training is another very effective type of exercise to reduce cholesterol and triglycerides. Tabata training is a 4 minute workout that works by engaging in an exercise for 20 seconds, resting for 10 seconds, doing another exercise for 20 seconds, resting again for 10 seconds, and so on until 4 minutes have elapsed. Full body exercises like burpees and mountain climbers work great with tabata training as it will get your heart rate up very quickly due to the great demand that those types of exercises put on the body.
If you’re sedentary or if you’re not able to handle intense exercise, then you’d be better equipped for walking or jogging. There’s a misconception that you need to engage in vigorous exercise to see results. The intensity of your exercise sessions should depend greatly on your current fitness levels and your goals.
You can start by just taking a 10 minute walk once a day. This may seem like nothing, but if you don’t exercise at all, then this small amount of exercise will put a demand on your cardiovascular system that it’s not used to. And it is this demand that will create the internal changes necessary to help you lower your cholesterol and triglyceride levels.
Swimming is a great exercise to reduce cholesterol and triglycerides. It’s especially useful if you suffer from any joint pain that makes walking or running difficult. Swimming can be very demanding on the muscles and the cardiovascular system, especially if you use challenging strokes like the breast stroke or butterfly stroke.
You can try mixing it up by using a different stroke every time you complete a lap. For instance, you can start your first lap with a sidestroke, then do your second lap with a backstroke, your third lap with a freestyle stroke, and so on. This variety will help you to keep your adherence by keeping things fun and interesting.
If you’re not one for exercising outdoors, then using a treadmill may be the fix you’ve been looking for. You can increase the demand put on your cardiovascular system by not only increasing the speed, but also by increasing the incline of the treadmill and by not holding onto the side railings.
Conveniently enough, most gyms have high quality treadmills that have TV’s built in them to keep you from getting bored as you run. You can also buy a treadmill for your own home to save you time and increase convenience. Either way, jogging on a treadmill will put a significant demand on your heart, which in turn will help you to improve your cholesterol and triglyceride levels.
Using stationary bikes are great for those of you who suffer from slight knee pain. The fluid motion of pedaling is much less demanding on the joints than the sheer forces evoked during treadmill training. Besides this, using a stationary bike makes it easy for you to read a book or magazine while you exercise to help keep your mind busy.
You may be thinking that stationary bikes are not very effective at helping you to burn off triglycerides due to you being in a seated position throughout the workout. Whether you’re standing or sitting is irrelevant. What matters is where your heart rate is. If you can keep your heart rate relatively high, then you can rest assure that you’re contributing to improving your cholesterol and triglyceride levels.
There’s no question that the best exercise to reduce cholesterol and triglycerides is anything that will put a great demand on the heart such as with cardiovascular exercise. Interval training is very effective as its short rest periods encourage an increased heart rate. Jogging and swimming are also very effective methods for lowering cholesterol as it’ll also be an excuse for you to go outside and get some fresh air.
Using treadmills or stationary bikes are great as well. These cardio machines (e.g. stair-masters, elliptical machines, etc.) put a great deal of stress on the cardiovascular system.
This stress will evoke changes in your body that will help to improve the fluidity of blood throughout your arteries, as well as the overall status quo of your heart.