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How to Increase HDL Cholesterol With Indian Food?

HDL (high density lipoprotein) cholesterol, colloquially known as “good” cholesterol, is one of the many types of lipoproteins that are present in the bloodstream.

HDL is the only lipoprotein for which higher levels are considered favorable, anything above 40 mg/dL is considered good, however, if you manage to have an HDL of 60 mg/dL or higher you can be considered “protected” from suffering heart diseases such as stroke and heart attack.

The reason why the higher your HDL number the better is that HDL acts by removing other forms of cholesterol from your bloodstream, thus decreasing the levels of lipoproteins such as LDL, which are considered bad for your health.

Interested to learn about ways to raise your HDL levels and lower the risk of heart diseases? Follow me in this article to discover how to increase HDL cholesterol with Indian food, with easy meal ideas so you can try out!  

How to Increase HDL Cholesterol with Indian Food

How to Increase HDL Cholesterol

Scientists have shown that the best alternative to raise HDL plasma levels is through lifestyle changes.

Such changes include a reduction of body weight, increase in physical activity, quit smoking, dietary changes, and many more. Below are some key points that might help you to raise your HDL levels.

Reduction of body weight

Overweight and obese people tend to have lower levels of HDL cholesterol. An interesting study conducted in Japan found that a 1-3%  reduction of body weight can result in HDL cholesterol increase.

Moreover, the study concluded that losing excess weight can help with many other health indicators, such as lowering LDL cholesterol levels, reducing blood pressure and blood glucose levels.

Physical Activity

Maintaining an active lifestyle is part of any healthy recommendation. Physical activity brings a myriad of benefits to human health and studies have shown that many types of exercises, including aerobic and strength routines, can help to raise HDL plasma levels.

Smoking cessation

It is well known that smoking habit has a number of negative effects on overall health. If you are looking to improve your heart health indicators, quitting smoking should definitely be on your list.

Scientists have studied the effects of smoking cessation on lipoproteins and the results concluded that although quitting smoking did not affect LDL levels, it significantly raised HDL blood levels. 

Dietary changes

The famous saying “you are what you eat” is the first thing that comes to mind. If you are trying to raise your HDL cholesterol levels, changing your dietary habits should be on the top of your list.

The good news is that this doesn’t mean that your food will be tasteless as there are many delicious ingredients that you can incorporate such as oats, whole grains, beans, nuts, vegetable oils, vegetables, kaali daal (black lentils), and fruits.

No Alcohol

Alcoholic drinks are also famously known for their harmful effects on overall health. It has been proven that high alcohol intake is associated with elevated triglycerides, lower HDL cholesterol, and cardiovascular disease.


In some cases, medication is needed. Pharmacological therapy with fibrates and stains has shown a significant rise in HDL cholesterol levels.   

Supplements to Increase HDL

In terms of supplements, there is a wide variety that you can include in your daily diet that will help you increase HDL cholesterol levels. One of the most used is Niacin, a type of vitamin B.

This vitamin can increase HDL levels by more than 30%, however, some side-effects are associated with the ingestion of high doses of niacin, the most common of which is an upset stomach, but other less common side-effects include liver damage and high blood sugar, so always be careful when taking supplements. 

LDL Cholesterol Foods to Avoid

Diet changes are intrinsically attached to promoting overall health. As you read, incorporating some key foods can help you increasing HDL levels. However, there are also some foods you should limit in order to help you with this task. 

Some foods have an elevated amount of saturated fatty acids and they are associated with an increase in LDL (bad cholesterol), these bad cholesterol foods are fatty meat cuts, fat dairy products, fried products, processed foods, snacks, pastries, and margarine. 

Indian Food Ideas to Increase HDL Cholesterol Levels

If your goal is to raise HDL cholesterol levels, you should incorporate in your diet ingredients that can help you with that. Indian cuisine is known for its use of spices, herbs, vegetables, and fruits. All of which can potentially raise HDL levels. 

Here are some delicious and easy to prepare ideas of Indian food that you could include in your diet. 

Malai Kofta: This is a very popular vegetarian dish. It is the equivalent of meatballs made from a mix of potatoes, carrots, peas, beans, and sweet corn in addition to paneer (Indian cottage cheese). This meal is very easy to prepare and is filled with nutrients and fibers.

Chole: chickpeas, assorted spices, flour, and bhatura yeast. Although the list of ingredients looks daunting, this is relatively easy to prepare. Charged with great nutrients, this meal is perfect to feed the whole family. 

Palak Paneer: Paneer cubes, which is the equivalent of cottage cheese, in spinach gravy. This flavorful and healthy food is made with only spinach, panner, and traditional Indian spices, filled with vitamins, minerals, and fibers it should definitely be on your list. 

How to Increase HDL Cholesterol Conclusion

Increasing your plasma HDL cholesterol level is associated with lowering the risk of stroke and heart attack.

Luckily there are some actions you can take in order to raise this number, changing lifestyle habits is the standard recommendation of the Adult Treatment Panel (ATP) and the American Heart Association. 

These changes include weight management, physical activity, quitting smoking, adhering to a healthy diet, and decreasing alcohol consumption.

Adhering to this lifestyle will promptly raise your HDL cholesterol levels and lower your heart diseases risk factors in no time and the best part is that you don’t even need to adhere to a tasteless diet in order to achieve that, you can increase HDL cholesterol with Indian food and take advantage of all their condiments and spices.


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