Cholesterol is a waxy substance produced by our liver to maintain the normal functioning of our body. High level of cholesterol (hypercholesterolemia) in our blood not only affects our health, it also increases the risk of heart attack and stroke. If you want to lower your cholesterol level, you must adopt some lifestyle changes like healthy eating, controlling your weight, exercising and taking medications such as statins.
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What kind of food help reduces the LDL level?
When it comes to healthy eating habits to lower cholesterol, here are some of the most important rules to remember:
- Go for low-fat dairy, Whey Protein and monounsaturated fats instead of Saturated Fats
- Eliminate Trans fats
- Choose foods that are rich in Omega-3 fatty acids
- Eat more soluble fiber
But not all foods from the above categories contribute the same amount in helping to lower cholesterol level. That’s why we have made this list of Cholesterol Buster foods:
Fruits and Vegetables
Vegetables like yams, sweet potatoes, peas, Brussel sprouts, and carrots are high in soluble fibers which lower LDL (low-density lipoprotein), the “BAD” Cholesterol. Among fruits, berries, passion fruit, oranges, pears, apricots, nectarines, and apples are also high in soluble fiber.
Beans and Legumes
Beans and legumes can be a great low-fat replacement for animal protein. They can help lower LDL cholesterol when they are prepared:
- Without seasoning, canned, frozen and in organic condition
- Without salt, sauce or butter added
Examples: kidney, navy, pinto, black, chickpea, or butter beans.
Whole grains are full of fibers and antioxidants, are good for our health, and lower cholesterol level. Examples include whole wheat, oats/oatmeal, rye, barley, corn, popcorn, brown rice, wild rice, buckwheat, triticale, bulgur (cracked wheat), millet, quinoa, and sorghum.
Low-Fat Dairy Products
Although dairy products like milk, cheese, and yogurt are high in fat, they are also a good source of nutrients. So, instead of totally avoiding them, try including 2-3 servings of low-fat dairy food like skim milk, fat-free cheese, nonfat yogurt into your regular diet to lower your cholesterol level.
Bread can lower your cholesterol level
Bread can help lower your cholesterol level as long as it doesn’t contain saturated and trans fats. Bread that is made of whole grains and whole wheat can help reduce your cholesterol level.
Snacks & Drinks
Snacking at regular intervals is important to maintain healthy blood sugar, blood pressure & cholesterol. Some healthy choices for snacks can be popcorn (whole grain & fiber), nuts (healthy fats), homemade potato chips (fiber & potassium) & oatmeal (soaks up cholesterol). Also, lemon juice contains various natural compounds that help reduce the amount of cholesterol circulating in our blood. Black tea, green tea & tomato juice are also good for lowering LDL level.