Triglycerides are the most common type of fat in the body. Foods consumed, whether of animal or vegetable origin, can influence the level of triglycerides in the blood. There are many types of fats, from polyunsaturated fats in olive oil to saturated fats in red meat. They all contribute to the level of triglycerides in the body, but in different ways. When a person eats more calories than their body needs, their body stores those extra calories as triglyceride fats. When the body needs more energy later on, it consumes these fats.

Triglycerides are important for health, but high levels increase the risk of heart disease. Lowering triglyceride levels and reducing other risk factors can decrease a person’s likelihood of developing heart disease. There are many ways to lower triglyceride levels safely. The best method may depend on the cause of the high triglycerides.

1. Calories: Reduce Intake

Salads and other dishes that contain vegetables tend to have fewer calories and more fiber, two things that can help lower triglyceride levels.
Regularly consuming more calories than the body can burn leads to excessive triglycerides in the body. One way to lower blood triglycerides is to eat fewer calories each day. A 5-10% weight loss can reduce triglyceride levels by 20%. There is a direct correlation between the extent of weight loss and the decrease in triglycerides.

2. Fats: choose the right ones

The body needs fat to function properly, but some fats are healthier than others. Choosing healthy fats can help lower triglyceride levels.
Solid fats come from meat, full-fat dairy products, and some tropical oils, such as coconut oil and palm oil. These foods contain trans fats and saturated fats. Trans fats and saturated fats raise triglyceride levels, so try to replace them whenever possible.
Unsaturated fats, especially polyunsaturated fats, can help lower triglyceride levels. Avocados and olive oil contain monounsaturated fats, which are also a healthy choice. Omega-3 fatty acids are found in cod liver oil, flax seeds, and cold-water fish, such as salmon and sardines.


Instead of a steak or burger, which are high in saturated fat, you can opt for a salmon fillet or a tuna sandwich. Animal products, such as lean meats, skinless poultry, fat-free or low-fat dairy products, and seafood, are also good options. Fats should represent between 25 and 35% of the diet.

3. Carbohydrates: Eat the right kinds

It’s best to limit their total carb intake to less than 60% of their recommended daily calorie intake. If a person eats more carbohydrates than necessary, the body stores them as fat. An increase in triglyceride levels appears to accompany diets with a carbohydrate intake above 60%. Certain carbohydrate-containing foods, including certain grains, may be beneficial in a diet. However, refined carbohydrates, such as white bread, are low in nutrition and add calories to the diet.


For healthier carbs, choose whole grains, oatmeal, and vegetables, like carrots. For dessert, opt for fresh or frozen blueberries, blackberries or raspberries rather than sweet pastries. These fruits can reduce sugar cravings while providing healthy carbs. Unrefined carbs are not only a source of dietary fiber, but they provide faster and longer lasting satiety than refined carbs because they release their energy more slowly.

4. Sugar: Reduce your consumption

Sugars are a form of carbohydrate, and they are high in calories. Foods high in simple sugars, especially refined fructose, can raise triglyceride levels.

Added sugar comes in many forms, including:

white sugar
Brown sugar
cane syrup
fruit juice concentrate
syrups, such as maple, agave and molasses syrups.
Concerned individuals should avoid added sugars to help lower their triglyceride levels.


Instead of sugar, sprinkle spices, such as cinnamon or ginger, on cereal or oatmeal to add flavor. Opt for fruit-based desserts rather than sticky puddings or ice creams. When buying ready-to-eat products, remember that many of them, including some savory products, such as tomato ketchup, contain added sugar. Therefore, check the label before buying a product and try to find one that is low in sugar.

Each 4 grams (g) of sugar equals one teaspoon. Ensure a maximum daily sugar intake of 25 g (about 6 teaspoons) for women and 36 g (9 teaspoons) for men.

5. Drinks: Choose carefully

Drink water instead of sugary drinks. Even bottled juices can be high in sugar. Beverages often contribute significantly to overall carbohydrate and sugar intake. Fruit drinks, sodas and other sugary drinks are among the main sources of added sugars in the diet. Alcohol also has a direct effect on triglyceride levels in some people. People looking to lower their triglyceride levels may find it beneficial to avoid alcohol. By taking steps to avoid beverages with added sugars, one can significantly reduce overall calorie intake.


Instead of drinking drinks with a high content of added sugars, one can opt for drinks with a low calorie content, such as water or tea. On a hot day, instead of having a carbonated drink, try adding a drop of 100% fruit juice to a glass of sparkling water.

6. Exercise

Physical activity also plays a vital role in lowering triglyceride levels. By burning calories, the body uses more triglycerides. Any exercise is beneficial, but the magnitude of its effects depends on the following:

the initial level of triglycerides of the person concerned
the amount of exercise
the intensity level of the exercise


Walking 30 minutes a day is a great way to start, as is engaging in low-stress activities like cycling or swimming.

For adults: engage in at least 150 minutes of moderate aerobic activity, 75 minutes of vigorous aerobic activity, or a combination of both each week.

7. Medications that can raise triglycerides

Some medications help raise triglyceride levels. According to a 2017 study, these include:

– oral estrogens
– corticosteroids
– derivatives of retinoic acid
– beta-adrenergic blocking agents
– thiazide diuretics
– protease inhibitors
– bile acid sequestrants
– antipsychotic drugs
– cyclosporine and tacrolimus
– L-asparaginase
– interferon alpha-2b

A person should not stop taking any medicine without talking to their doctor first, as it can be dangerous. Anyone who is concerned about side effects from any medication they are using should also consult a healthcare professional.

8. Do a health check

A regular checkup can help you track your triglyceride levels. The most common causes of high triglycerides are related to diet and metabolism. Besides excess body weight and a diet high in fats and carbohydrates, several health conditions can increase the risk.

According to a study published in the journal Nutrients, other risk factors for high triglycerides are type 2 diabetes and kidney disease, such as uremia.
Genetic factors can also make a person more likely to develop high triglycerides under certain circumstances. If tests show a person has high triglycerides or has a family history of high triglycerides, the doctor may suggest additional tests or follow-up.
This measurement can help him determine if there is an underlying health problem or allow him to advise a person on how to keep their triglyceride levels low. Triglyceride levels can also increase during pregnancy.

Importance of triglyceride levels

If a person’s triglyceride level is too high, they are at increased risk for certain diseases and disorders. According to a Trusted Source study in The Lancet Diabetes & Endocrinology, high triglyceride levels play a role in cardiovascular diseases, such as coronary heart disease and atherosclerosis.

High triglyceride levels can have this effect because they can cause plaque buildup in the arteries. Plaque is a combination of cholesterol, triglyceride fats, calcium, cellular waste and fibrin, which is the material the body uses for clotting. The buildup of plaque increases the risk of heart disease because it blocks the normal flow of blood through the arteries. Plaque can also break off to form a clot, which can cause a stroke or heart attack. Triglyceride and cholesterol levels are two of the most important factors to monitor for a healthy heart. There is also a risk of damaging the pancreas if triglyceride levels are too high.

* criptom strives to transmit health knowledge in a language accessible to all. In NO CASE, the information given can not replace the opinion of a health professional.