High levels of LDL (low-density lipoprotein) cholesterol in the blood can increase the risk of heart disease and stroke. Adopting healthy lifestyle habits, including regular exercise, can help to lower LDL cholesterol levels and reduce the risk of these conditions. (1) In this article, we will explore some of the best exercises to reduce LDL cholesterol quickly.
Top 5 Exercises to Lower LDL Cholesterol Quickly
Aerobic exercises, also known as cardio, are activities that increase your heart rate and breathing rate. They are effective in lowering LDL cholesterol levels and improving overall cardiovascular health. Examples of aerobic exercises include brisk walking, jogging, cycling, swimming, and dancing. Aim for at least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity aerobic exercise per week, or 75 minutes of vigorous-intensity exercise per week.
Resistance training, also known as strength training or weightlifting, can help to increase muscle mass and reduce body fat. This can help to lower LDL cholesterol levels and improve overall health. Resistance training can be done using bodyweight exercises, resistance bands, or weights. Aim for at least two days per week of resistance training, targeting all major muscle groups. (2)
High-Intensity Interval Training (HIIT)
High-Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) involves short bursts of intense exercise followed by periods of rest or low-intensity exercise. HIIT has been shown to be effective in reducing LDL cholesterol levels and improving cardiovascular health. Examples of HIIT exercises include sprinting, jumping jacks, and burpees. Aim for at least two days per week of HIIT, with each session lasting between 20 and 30 minutes. (3)
Yoga is a low-impact form of exercise that can help to reduce stress and improve cardiovascular health. Some yoga poses, such as the Sun Salutation, can be effective in reducing LDL cholesterol levels. Aim for at least two days per week of yoga, incorporating poses that focus on strength, balance, and flexibility.
Pilates is a low-impact form of exercise that focuses on core strength, flexibility, and posture. Pilates exercises can help to reduce body fat and improve cardiovascular health, which can help to lower LDL cholesterol levels. Aim for at least two days per week of Pilates, incorporating exercises that target the abs, glutes, and back.
In conclusion, regular exercise can help to lower LDL cholesterol levels and reduce the risk of heart disease and stroke. Incorporating a variety of exercises, including aerobic, resistance, high-intensity interval training, yoga, and Pilates, can help to achieve optimal results. Consult with your healthcare provider before starting any new exercise program, especially if you have any underlying medical conditions.
- American Heart Association. (2021). Exercise and Cholesterol. Retrieved from https://www.heart.org/en/health-topics/cholesterol/prevention-and-treatment-of-high-cholesterol-hyperlipidemia/exercise-and-cholesterol
- Mayo Clinic. (2021). Strength training: Get stronger, leaner, healthier. Retrieved from https://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/fitness/in-depth/strength-training/art-20046670
- American Council on Exercise. (2013). High-Intensity Interval Training. Retrieved from https://www.acefitness.org/education-and-resources/lifestyle/blog/3323/high-intensity-interval-training/