High cholesterol: The 57p herb that causes levels to plummet by almost 20% – ‘effective’

Cholesterol has a bad name but much is misunderstood about the role it plays in the body. The waxy substance helps to build cells and makes vitamins and other hormones, for example. The confusion is often the result of conflating cholesterol with LDL cholesterol – the “bad” type that clogs up your arteries, thereby hiking your risk of heart disease.

In addition to lowering harmful cholesterol levels, the sage extract also increased HDL levels.

HDL cholesterol counters the harmful effects of LDL cholesterol by picking it up and transporting it to the liver where it is flushed out.

“The results suggest that sage may be effective and safe in the treatment of hyperlipidemia [high cholesterol],” the researchers concluded.

General dietary tips

The single most important dietary intervention you can make is to cut down on saturated fat, according to cholesterol charity Heart UK.

How do I know if I have high cholesterol?

High cholesterol does not typically cause symptoms. You can only find out if you have it from a blood test.

The NHS explains: “Your GP might suggest having a test if they think your cholesterol level could be high.”

According to the health body, this may be because of your age, weight or another condition you have (like high blood pressure or diabetes).

“Ask your GP surgery for a cholesterol test if you have not had a test before and you’re over 40, overweight, or have high cholesterol or heart problems run in your family.”

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