Low-carb diets are usually very healthy and safe. Yet for some people, they can cause a spike in the levels of LDL, the so-called “bad” cholesterol. It is thus important to know how to lower your cholesterol and prevent the negative effects of high LDL.
What Causes Cholesterol Spikes?
The basic principle of the low-carb ketogenic diet is to reduce your intake of carbohydrates. In theory, the fact that your body has fewer extra carbs to convert into fats should help you lose weight. But some people tend to consume lots of fats while on this diet. This, in turn, can contribute to the elevated cholesterol levels.
In some cases, underlying medical conditions can also be the cause of high LDL. Thyroid problems are among the most common culprits. Also, if you’ve lost a lot of weight recently, it could also lead to a temporary spike in cholesterol levels.
How to Lower Your Cholesterol
Some of the foods you eat may be rich in saturated fats. While they don’t usually put you at risk of heart problems, they could be the cause of your high LDL levels. It might thus be a good idea to replace them with monounsaturated fats. You can start by cooking with olive oil instead of butter, as it can protect you from the negative effects of LDL.
Many people also like to complement their ketogenic diet with the so-called “bulletproof” coffee. This is regular coffee with a few teaspoons of coconut oil and butter mixed in. But butter has a high content of saturated fats. As such, ditching the “bulletproof” coffee could be enough to lower your cholesterol.
What works for some people might not work for others. It is thus important to find the diet that can help you achieve your body goals without causing any side effects. So, if your problems persist, you might want to ditch the ketogenic diet altogether. You can still be on a low-carb diet while eating some fiber-rich fruits every day.