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Food choice is not the only factor affecting your cholesterol levels. The following are sneaky bad habits that can increase your cholesterol.

The body naturally produces all the cholesterol we need, but we can increase our levels through our diet and lifestyle habits. There are three main types of cholesterol: LDL cholesterol (the “bad” kind), HDL cholesterol (the “good” kind), and VLDL (which carries triglycerides).

While it’s a good idea to increase your HDL cholesterol levels, it’s not so good if you’re increasing your LDL and VLDL levels. In fact, you might be doing it without even realizing it. The following is a list of bad habits that can increase your cholesterol.

1. Smoking

Bad Habits That Can Increase Your CholesterolSmoking can increase your LDL cholesterol and can affect your heart health, lung health, and brain health. “It’s really bad for your lungs. But these risk factors are additive,” says cardiologist Leslie Cho, MD. “So you smoke and you have high cholesterol, you have now doubled your risk. You smoke, you have high blood pressure, and you have cholesterol, it’s additive. It’s really additive. So it’s really important for your children, for yourself, for your longevity, but for your quality of life that you don’t smoke.”

2. Obesity

While obesity can increase your risk of high cholesterol, losing weight can effectively manage the condition and other health conditions. “If you are obese and have high cholesterol, losing weight should help lower your cholesterol,” says Johns Hopkins Medicine. “[It can also lower] your risk for other obesity-related conditions including diabetes and cardiovascular disease.”

3. Alcohol

“People who drink a lot of alcohol, because alcohol is made from sugar, they have very high triglycerides,” explains Cho. “And really high triglyceride increases your risk for diabetes, for pancreatitis, and having high triglycerides in women is especially problematic because it increases your risk for stroke. And so it’s really important to try to control your triglyceride.”

4. Unhealthy Diet

Certain foods, like oatmeal, nuts, and fatty fish, help to keep your cholesterol levels in check,” says Stephanie Watson, Executive Editor, Harvard Women’s Health Watch. “And not all high cholesterol foods are bad for you. For example, eggs are high in cholesterol, but they’re also packed with protein and other nutrients. It’s the foods that are high in saturated fat that you need to worry about because they can raise your cholesterol levels AND make you gain weight.”

The Outlook

L-arginine PlusThese are only some of the ways in which you may have been unknowingly increasing your cholesterol. If you want to manage your levels, then start exercising, eating healthily, changing unhealthy habits, and taking supplements like L-arginine Plus.

Its ingredients effectively promote cholesterol health, blood pressure health, circulation, and more. Start giving your cholesterol health the support it deserves by embracing healthy habits and taking L-arginine Plus.

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