Walking, cycling and swimming help lower cholesterol
Cholesterol is needed for our body. But it is also dangerous, not only because it is a fat that circulates in the blood and that is gradually settling on the walls of the arteries, but also because we may have an excessive increase of it.
Preventing or reducing high cholesterol is not always easy because the causes of this increase may be related to several factors, such as taking medicines or an unhealthy lifestyle, and it may also be a genetic issue .
In this article we will focus on physical activity as a way to reduce or prevent cholesterol increase, since sport can be a great help in balancing cholesterol levels (good and bad).
Recall that this is composed of LDL cholesterol, or bad cholesterol, and HDL cholesterol, or good cholesterol, and that the sum of both is called “total cholesterol.”
The goal is to achieve ideal levels of total cholesterol in the blood between 1.8 and 2.0 g / l.
Thus, HDL should be greater than 0.35 g / l and LDL should not exceed 1.6 g / l, according to experts.
And to be able to be in these healthy values, then we can (and should) have some physical activity.
The reason is simple. Physical activity, regardless of the type of physical exercise, lowers bad cholesterol, but in addition, it is beneficial to raise good cholesterol.
However, efficacy is achieved consistently and with sufficiently long and intense sessions. But of course any physical exercise should be done according to our possibilities.
Walking and running:
In addition to running, fast walking is one of the most recommended sports. It’s basically about getting good shoes and comfortable clothing and increasing the exercise time.
Doing this three times a week in 45-minute sessions is a time and frequency that can already help us achieve results.
However, one must also respect the physical form of each one, and start running without increasing speed beyond 8 kms / hour.
Swimming is practiced almost only during holidays, when we have access to the beach, river, lake or open swimming pool, which is not an option if we want to be constant.
In the case of year-round swimming, we should do it two to three times a week, ideally in progressively longer sessions, but always without going overboard.
If swimming in the sea or in lakes and rivers, then it is important to be prudent, especially when you are starting. Generally speaking, we should be careful whenever we enter the sea because afterwards we will also have to return, so we should not stray too far from the shore.
Care must also be taken with the currents and the indications of the rescuer (if any), as well as pay attention to the colors of the flags.
Finally, if we swim in a place where we have feet, it will be easier in case there is any problem.
Ride a bike:
Pedaling two or three times a week during a session with a minimum of half an hour is also an interesting option to keep cholesterol under control.
Again, excesses are not recommended. In this case we have the advantage of the bicycle being an excellent tool to give us quiet walks and that help us to stay in shape, without making unnecessary efforts and that can be harmful to our health.
In short, walking, jogging, swimming or cycling are easy to combine exercises throughout the year, and even can be done in a complementary way. We should also complement exercise with a healthy lifestyle in other settings, such as diet or emotional well-being, escaping from stress.
Remember that before starting or restarting a physical activity, we must check in for the experts to advise us on the correct way to practice, as the type of sport that best suits our needs. Or, in some cases, do it very gently or even refrain.
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