So many times when we hear dietitians or physicians talk about major health concerns due to wrong eating habits; we hear the words cholesterol and blood pressure. Here is an insight into what cholesterol is all about, and foods that lower cholesterol.
First of all, we need to know what cholesterol is. Cholesterol is a lipid found in the cell membranes of our tissues. Cholesterol is produced by the liver and transported in the blood plasma. The thing to be remembered about cholesterols is that there are two types of cholesterols âthe good cholesterol and the bad cholesterol. The bad cholesterol is the low-density lipoprotein (LDL), which tends to build up on the walls of arteries that provide blood supply to heart and brain. This happens if excess amounts of LDL are circulated through blood. The good cholesterol or the high-density lipoprotein (HDL) helps to remove the bad cholesterol from the arteries and thus prevents blockage of arteries and further complications.
Hence it is clear that cholesterol has a deep impact on our health and the optimum cholesterol ratio (calculated as total cholesterol / HDL cholesterol) should be 3.5 or at least less than 5. Thus, the food that we need to consume to maintain healthy cholesterol levels should be such that they decrease the bad cholesterol and increase or maintain the good cholesterol levels. Here are some of the best and healthiest food options that can potentially lower your bad cholesterol and help you lead a healthy life.
Oats and other whole grains
Whole grains are known to contain high amounts of soluble fiber, which are essential for reducing bad cholesterol. In addition to oatmeal, oat bran and other whole grains, the other sources of soluble fiber that helps to lower the low-density lipoproteins are kidney beans, Brusselsâs sprouts, pears, apples and prunes. The soluble fiber binds to the bile and helps in its elimination via excretion. It is seen that five to ten grams of fiber intake per day can reduce about 5% of LDL cholesterol. So make sure you include wholesome amounts of oats, whole grains, and soluble fiber sources to keep a check on your bad cholesterol.
Walnuts and Almonds
Walnuts and almonds are great foods that reduce your bad cholesterol levels. Walnuts are also rich in polyunsaturated fatty acids that make the blood vessels healthy and elastic. However the walnuts and almonds need to be consumed in moderation since too much intake can cause a problem. Use a handful of walnuts or almonds in your daily meal, either as munching or as a addition to raw salads, and cooked vegetables.
Research says that garlic has blood thinning properties and play a major role in reducing levels of bad cholesterol or low density lipoproteins. Garlic contains a substance called allicin, which supposedly prevents the retention of LDL cholesterol by the body. It is shown that consumption of one clove of garlic per day can lessen the LDL levels by almost ten to fifteen percent.
Blueberries contain a compound known as pterostilbene (which is also seen in several varieties of grapes). This compound helps to lower cholesterol very efficiently. In addition to that blueberries contain wholesome amounts of vitamin C and are great antioxidants.
These foods that lower cholesterol should be included in adequate quantities in your diet to ensure your bad cholesterol levels are brought down. Always eat healthy, exercise and keep smiling!
The best way to lower cholesterol its to eat a lot of fruits, exercise and be an active person. Walking and doing exercise will help you to lose weight and you will be a healthy person. Dont get in a diet just be careful with your food. Eating healthy will provide you a better and long life.
What about Avocados, Olives, and Olive oil? From what Iâve read, 26 of the 30 grams of fat in an avocado are heart-healthy, unsaturated fats that can increase your levels of HDL cholesterol. Donât the good fats in avocados, olives, and olive oil protect against heart disease and diabetes too? Iâve also read that flax seed oil can lower blood pressure in men with high cholesterol. I read a study that concluded that black soybeans lower LDL cholesterol, and reduce the risk for type 2 diabetes as well. I drink pomegranate juice regularly after I read a National Academy of Sciences study that showed how pomegranate juice reduces cholesterol plaque buildup.
Any more tips? What about supplements to reduce cholesterol?
There was actually a study a while back on Soy products and they find that they are not that great after all just an average food.... I find this interesting because I remeber a lot of hype on soy products to reduce cholesteral and such Thank you for the advice! Mine has actually lowered by 100! I'm cutting down to 15 - 20 fat grams a day
Thanks for the advise on various foods that lower cholesterol. I think we should also be aware of the foods that can raise cholesterol too such as EGGS. I remember one time I ate a plate of deviled eggs and the next day I had a scheduled appointment for the doctor for an annual check-up. Immediately following the appointment, the doctor called me hysterically and told me that my cholesterol was unusually high. I had to explain to the doctor that prior to the day of the appointment that I had been eating deviled eggs and it was definitely the eggs that raised my cholesterol. I had to return back to the doctor that found that the cause of my high cholesterol on that day was the EGGS! So now I know to stay away from having too many eggs because it raises my cholesterol. Now I am more aware of my health and I try to stay on top of things like cholesterol health especially.
Eggs have gotten a bad rap! This can be misleading. Deviled eggs are full of mayonaise which contains bad fats. Eggs themselves are a pure form of cholesterol, while it will make a difference what the hens have been fed. Consumer hatchery chickens fed a high corn diet the eggs will be higher in fats and cholesterol, while free range or organic hens will produce eggs much healthier for consumption. I raise my own chickens and eggs and found that my 3 month cholesterol actually decreases with a daily breakfast of eggs *poached, scrambled etc vs oatmeal breakfast. Also a PLATE full of deviled eggs moderation in all things helps lol
Here's what I consume every day...diet culled from extensive research.Very high antioxidant level.
A small saucer of nuts every morning...comprising 2 brazil nuts,4 almonds,4 walnut pieces,4 pecans,4 unsalted peanuts,4 pistcios,3 hazlenuts,2 macadamias. And one square of 85% cocoa chocolate. All these have a huge ORAC antioxidant score.
Four cloves of pickled garlic. 2 silverskin picked onions. 10 mixed olives.
Small pot of Japanese green tea.
Bowl porridge,made with water,and added 2 tablespoons of Linwoods Q-10/linseed/walnut/almond mixture.
The ratio between omega-3 and omega-6 is very important. The food that we typically consume is very rich in omega-6, but not in omega-3. This breaks the balance between omega-3 and omega-6 - that's why omega-3 foods are so much needed.
We need foods rich in omega-3 in order to have the right balance. Having the incorrect ration can cause heart related problems.
I would check out foods fortified with plant sterols, which are natural cholesterol reducers found in foods like nuts, seeds, and veggies. It's hard to get the recommended intake of plant sterols in these foods alone, so many companies are now adding plant sterols to their food and beverage products. Minute Maid Heartwise orange juice and Smart Balance HeartRight milk have CoroWise plant sterols. There are also Corazonas tortilla chips.