Are you suffering from High blood cholesterol? It is imperative for you to keep your cholesterol levels in check. Your body needs some cholesterol to make hormones, vitamin D, and substances that help you digest foods. Your body makes all the cholesterol it needs. However, cholesterol also is found in some of the foods you eat. It only becomes a matter of concern when the levels of cholesterol exceed the required amount. The higher the level of LDL cholesterol in your blood, the GREATER your chance is of getting heart disease. The higher the level of HDL cholesterol in your blood, the LOWER your chance is of getting heart disease. Know your cholesterol level and eat healthy in order to avoid any inconvenience.
Foods that lower cholesterol!
- Spinach – Popeye Had It Right:
Spinach is a great food to lower cholesterol naturally and can provide some other impressive health benefits. Spinach contains lutein, which helps protect arteries from clogging while also combating other diseases such as macular degeneration (a condition which affects eyesight). Spinach and beans together can be the foundation for a variety of meals that are filling, low in calories and powerful for reducing cholesterol levels
- Cranberry Juice:
Cranberry juice is another food that has been shown by scientific studies to contribute to good cholesterol levels. Like tea cranberry juice is also high in antioxidants that give it other powerful positive health effects.
Garlic has long been used to add flavor to meals, but it also has some significant health benefits. Garlic been shown to help reduce the occurrence of clotting in the blood and can thus help prevent the build-up of plaque in the arteries during the early stages of atherosclerosis. However it may not have any significant effects for someone already suffering from heart disease as a result of high cholesterol levels.
Soy, high in fiber, low in saturated fat, and cholesterol free, is the only complete plant-based protein, which means it’s an equal swap for animal sources like meat and dairy. A study published in 2010 in The Journal of Nutrition found that eating soy daily, and adding it to your diet to replace foods high in saturated fat that can help lower LDL cholesterol by nearly 8 to 10 percent.
- Walnuts, almonds and other nuts:
Walnuts, almonds and other nuts can reduce blood cholesterol. Rich in polyunsaturated fatty acids, walnuts also help keep blood vessels healthy. Eating about a handful (1.5 ounces, or 42.5 grams) a day of most nuts, such as almonds, hazelnuts, peanuts, pecans, some pine nuts, pistachio nuts and walnuts, may reduce your risk of heart disease. Just make sure the nuts you eat aren’t salted or coated with sugar. All nuts are high in calories, so a handful will do. To avoid eating too many nuts and gaining weight, replace foods high in saturated fat with nuts. For example, instead of using cheese, meat or croutons in your salad, add a handful of walnuts or almonds.
- Green Tea:
Fire up your water kettle, because according to a new meta-analysis of 14 studies, green tea significantly reduced total and LDL cholesterol levels (by 7.20 mg/dL and 2.19 mg/dL, respectively). In some studies participants drank tea; in others, they took green tea supplements.
Beans are another type of food to lower cholesterol that are rich in soluble fiber. Beans actually combine well with many other healthy foods like leafy green vegetables to create filling, tasty cholesterol lowering meals.
Beans have another added benefit in that they make you feel full without pushing your energy intake too high. That means you can eat relatively large quantities of beans without taking in more calories than you burn on any given day (which is how your body ends up storing fat, when your incoming energy supply exceeds your true energy requirements).
- Cocoa: Sounds like heaven
In good news for chocoholics, a meta-analysis in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition found that cocoa consumption lowered LDL cholesterol by more than 5 mg/dL in people at risk of heart disease. Most studies lasted about one month and looked at the effects of dark chocolate and cocoa powder. But the study authors caution that more research is needed to know whether the effects last or how much to eat to achieve results.
- Flaxseed Oil:
Foods to lower cholesterol aren’t only limited to the ‘big picture’ foods – little things like oil may also make a difference. Flaxseed oil is a good healthy oil option that has similar effects to fish oil. If you tend to use butter for cooking, just replacing that with flaxseed oil can make a huge difference to your cholesterol intake. Also, since many vegans and vegetarians prefer not to eat any animal products, flaxseed oil is a good alternative to fish oil if you’re conscientious about animal rights.
- Red wine – Pour a glass for yourself:
Some wine when consumed in moderation can act as a food to lower cholesterol. There’s an obvious reason for that – wine is made of grapes and contains the same fiber that grapes do, so it produces the same effects of lowering LDL. The key, however, is not to overdo it, as many studies have shown that excessive alcohol consumption has negative effects on cholesterol levels, as well as bringing many other health risks with it.
Avocados are also becoming widely viewed as a kind of super food to lower cholesterol naturally because of their monounsaturated fat content. While saturated fats and trans fats are, generally speaking, bad for you (this goes particularly for the trans fats), you will want to try to include ‘good fats’ (polyunsaturated and monounsaturated) in your diet where you can. Some people are not aware of the difference and steer clear of avocados because of their high fat content. Don’t be fooled by the modern fat hysteria, not all fats are the same.
Various lentils too can be made part of your staple diet if you’re looking to lower your cholesterol levels naturally. The best thing about lentils, like beans is that you can combine them with many different kinds of healthy food. Lentils are also low calorie food so you don’t have to worry too much about weight gain while incorporating lentils in to your diet for the purpose of lowering cholesterol.
Keeping your cholesterol levels in check will no longer be an issue. These natural foods will also enhance your health and be beneficial as a remedy for other diseases/disorders.