What to do to decrease you Triglycerides and increase your HDL


What are Triglycerides and HDL?

Triglycerides is what you need to worry most about. Just by decreasing it, you will increase your HDL. Let’s delve a little more into triglycerides. To begin, triglycerides is not entirely bad. It is good for your body when you don’t have more than what you need. They provide energy, they build cells as well as hormones. But like most things in life, the problem comes when we have extra. There are 3 ways you get triglycerides:

  1. By eating food that contains fats
  2. By eating extra food such as starches, fiber and sugars
  3. By getting it from fat storage in the body

Understanding your results




Normal: Under 150 mg/dl

Normal: greater than 40

High: greater than 150

Abnormal: less than 40


Harmful effect of high Triglyceride:



What you can do to lower your Triglycerides and raise your HDL?


The best way to fight off the triglycerides is to begin with lifestyle changes. Of course, you should consult with your Doctor to discuss if medication is also necessary.  In the table you can see the foods you should choose and those you should avoid.




Healthier Foods – Eat low fat diet and fiber rich foods (vegetables, fruits and wholes grains) and dark colored fruits such as blueberries, blackberries, and black raspberries.

Avoid Sugary drinks Do not drink sodas (pop), artificial juice, sugary water. Limit drinks that contain sugar to less than 6 ounces per day.

Weight Loss – losing 10-15lbs of weight can reduce your triglycerides by 20%.  For every 6 pounds of weight loss your HDL increases by 1 mg/dl.   

Avoid Large Portions –Starchy foods like bread, potatoes, pasta, cereal, rice, and noodles are broken down into sugars by your body. These sugars can become triglycerides if eaten in large amounts.

Exercise – getting 30 minutes of exercise daily, 5-7 days a week, helps the muscles to use triglycerides for energy. Gradually increase your activity level towards a goal of 10,000 steps each day.

Avoid high blood sugar – Keep your sugar in check.  If you have Diabetes, take your medications and keep your diabetes controlled.

Niacin-Rich Foods – eat turkey, chicken breast, green peas and mushrooms.

Avoid Smoking – smoking can raise your triglycerides, lower HDL, “good” cholesterol, and is a major risk factor for heart attack and stroke.

Healthy “Good” Fatsfats such as olive, canola or peanut oil, almonds, cashews, pecans, walnuts and peanuts, peanut butter, flaxseed and avocado.

Avoid Deserts – Doughnuts, cookies, crackers, muffins, pies, cakes, fried foods and baked goods etc.



Omega-3 Fatty Acids – eat fish such as salmon, tilapia or tuna. Eat walnuts, green-leafy vegetables. Take fish oil supplements 2000 mg/day.

Avoid Refined Carbohydrates – white bread, white rice, sugary cereal, potato chips, crackers, pretzels and rice cakes.

Soy Foods – eat edamame, tofu, soy nuts, and drink soy milk.

Avoid Alcohol use – Avoid alcohol if you have high triglycerides as it can increase it even more. Remember even small amounts of any type of drink, beer, wine, mixed drinks matter.

Benefits of decreasing Triglycerides and increasing your HDL

These simple lifestyle changes can have a huge impact on your overall health. The good thing is that, if you start choosing and avoid things as indicated above, it can start reducing your triglycerides in just a few days. The hard part is starting and continuing. Once you start,  if you keep at it, it will become easier. With discipline, commitment and the help and support of your family and friends you will not only be able to get those numbers back to normal but your overall health and life will be so much better. Why not give it a try?

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