1) It is a fact that Alcohol in moderation can actually slightly reduce your overall cholesterol levels and the good news is that it is not necessary to drink red wine to get this effect. Almost all types of alcohols would have the same effect on your cholesterol. Nor will having the alcohol with meals make any difference to its beneficial properties. The Key word however is moderation. One should preferably restrict to two 30 ml drinks for men and one or less than that for women per day.
But this small benefit should not be the reason to start drinking as the amount restrictions are not always followed when you are in a party mood and it can harm health in other ways like increasing the blood pressure.
2) If you already have high cholesterol levels, you should be particular about reducing the amount of Trans- fat in your diet. Check food labels for the amounts of Trans- fat or partially hydrogenated oils which could specifically increase your bad cholesterol and reduce your good cholesterol. Trans- fats are commonly used in bakery stuff, commercially available snacks, margarine, and fried stuff. The best diet when you are trying to reduce your cholesterol levels would be to reduce Trans- fat consumption to close to zero.
3) When a person has cholesterol issues, it is very important to look at the Triglyceride levels also. This is the kind of extra fat that is stored in the fat cells for a possible future use by the body. One should try to keep the TG levels below 150mg/dl. A high level on its own irrespective of normal total cholesterol can cause heart disease.
4) The best form of exercise to lower the total cholesterol is circuit training. Though all exercises are good for the body, one would need to do strength training mixed with vigorous cardio to get the full benefit. Slow walks or Yoga if done slowly, are good for general health and flexibility but may not help to reduce cholesterol significantly. Power Yoga may help to specifically reduce the cholesterol levels.
5) Watching your cholesterol levels in your young age may keep your mind sharp even when you get old. High cholesterol is known to cause blockages in the small tiny blood vessels of our brain which are too small to notice otherwise but cause brain shrinking and memory loss later on in life.