The 'green' secret to perfect cholesterol

It's practically 2018... yet when it comes to cholesterol, your doc may as well be in the Stone Age.

We know that LOWER isn't always better.

We know that you actually NEED cholesterol, including the LDL cholesterol that's often dismissed as the "bad" kind.

We know that it's far BETTER and far SAFER to bring levels down slowly, naturally, and carefully.

We know ALL that and more -- this is mainstream science, after all -- but docs are STILL throwing dangerous, muscle-wrecking drugs at patients to bring LDL levels down rapidly and dramatically.

That's downright reckless, because there's one other thing we know about cholesterol: The typical heart attack patient has LOW levels of LDL.

NOT high.

If your own LDL levels are a little on the high side, don't rush out and blindly swallow meds. Look to science-backed nondrug therapies, including one that goes down great when the weather is cold.

Green tea is one of nature's best inflammation-fighters -- a powerful treatment known to fight cancer and protect the heart at the same time.

But it has one other trick up its sleeve.

The main healthy compounds in green tea -- EGCG, EG, EGC, and EC -- can bring cholesterol levels down safely and gradually. Over the course of the year, you can see your total cholesterol go down by 2.1 percent and your LDL by more than 4 percent.

That makes green tea between three and four times more effective than the placebo used in the study of older women.

The study doesn't show which of those compounds did the trick, but EGCG can stop your body from synthesizing and absorbing cholesterol.

While the women in this study were given supplements, that's not always necessary, especially if you enjoy the taste of green tea. You can get the same levels of EGCG simply by drinking two or three cups a day.

Because of how it works, you'll probably see the biggest benefit by drinking your tea -- or taking that supplement -- right around mealtime.

Just be careful about where your tea comes from, as it's very sensitive to the soil in which it's grown. It can pull metals such as fluoride or lead out of the ground and right into the leaves.

Avoid any tea grown in China, and try to stick to blends grown either in Japan or right here in the United States.

Don't stop with green tea. While this delicious drink can help bring cholesterol down a little bit, it might not be enough for everyone.

So, consider other healthy options like natural therapies and lifestyle changes.