Just a little change in your diet and lifestyle will help lower your cholesterol. It’s so easy to spike up your cholesterol level by putting every tom, dick and harry in your mouth, not minding their nutritional content.
A high cholesterol level is unhealthy for the system and is a leading cause of heart disease. Good thing is, lowering your cholesterol isn’t also as hard, all you need to do is implement a few changes. One of the major changes that could reduce your cholesterol level is in your diet. The key is in eating foods that lower LDL and avoiding foods that boost LDL. LDL (low density lipoprotein) is the dangerous particle responsible for carrying cholesterol and causing atherosclerosis involving the clogging of arteries. Doing both guarantees that you are getting rid of the cholesterol and avoiding it once and for all.
There are indeed foods that could lower LDL cholesterol and consuming them is ten steps in the right direction. Some of them are rich in soluble fiber. Fiber has the ability to get rid of cholesterol before they get circulating by binding them and their precursors in the digestive system. Some other foods contain polyunsaturated fats which possesses the ability to reduce LDL directly. Still others contain stanols and sterols found in Plants. These prevent the absorption of cholesterol.
FOODS THAT LOWER CHOLESTEROL
Avocado is one of the most nutritionally rich foods. It is filled with fiber and monounsaturated fats which are effective in the lowering of LDL and in the increasing of HDL, which is the good cholesterol. Several studies have been carried out to prove this stance. One of such studies was carried out on obese and overweight people who had high LDLs. Part of them were expected to eat an avocado daily while the other part was expected not to. At the end of the study, it was found that the individuals who ate an avocado everyday had lower LDLs and the ones who ate no avocados had an almost unchanged LDL level.
Garlic is an extremely popular cooking ingredient and well-known medicine. It’s been turned to over and over for its marvellous effects on the body. Garlic contains a compound known as allicin which is its active ingredient. According to several studies, it was able to reduce blood pressure and LDL. You will have to be consistent enough with this if you’re going to get substantial results.
Oatmeal, oat bran and high-fiber foods
Oatmeal has soluble fiber which helps to decrease cholesterol absorption into the blood stream. Infact, according to studies, taking more than 5grams of fiber a day could have huge effects on your LDL levels. From breakfast of oatmeal, you’ll be getting about 4grams of fiber, add a few fruits to the diet and you have your ideal fiber requirement. Other foods you’ll find soluble fiber include brussels sprouts, apple, pears and kidney beans.
Soya beans =healthy diet! They’re rich in lots of nutrients like minerals, fat and protein and help keep LDL low too. It could easily replace milk and dairy products like yoghurts and custard and is actually a much safer option. You could have soya yoghurts, soya milk, soya custard, soya desserts, soya meat like a soya sausage or burger, tofu and you could even get soya nuts which is referred to as roasted edamame beans.
Nuts are super foods that are highly nutritious. They’re rich in potassium, magnesium, vitamin E, protein, plant sterols and a host of other nutrients that keep the immunity high and the body constantly healthy. Nuts also contain unsaturated and saturated fats even though there’s much lower saturated fats and the unsaturated fats. Both along with each other work to make sure the cholesterol level is normal. The fiber they contain help prevent cholesterol absorption in the bloodstream while also keeping you full therefore preventing you from helping yourself with more food that could be unhealthy. To get the best cholesterol lowering results from nuts, aim for about thirty grams of nuts daily and your cholesterol would have reduced by at least 5%. Always go instead for the unsalted nuts though as too much salt could spike up your blood pressure levels and you don’t want that happening while you’re trying to shed some cholesterol. The ones that have their skin intact and are unroasted are also a healthier option. There are lots of nuts to chose from. The almonds, chestnuts, cashew nuts, hazelnuts, peanuts, brazil nuts, macadamias, walnuts, pistachios etc.
Fruits and vegetables
These should have been number one on the list, but oh well! Saving the best for the last. Fruits and vegetables are one of the healthiest food choices, well… the healthiest. They’re known to prevent strokes, cancer and heart disease. They contain lots of minerals and vitamins and possess certain chemicals that contribute to the health and disease-free state of the body. They’re pretty low in calories which make them a good diet option and contain close to no fat. Fruits and vegetables are extremely rich in fiber which helps lower the cholesterol by preventing its absorption as we have previously seen. Okra, avocado, pepper, beans, sweet potatoes, apple, strawberries, prunes, cauliflower, kidney peas, chick peas, lentils and aubergine are good examples of some fruits and vegetables you should begin snacking and feeding on as you ditch your unhealthy foods. Other fruits and vegetables you could try out include pumpkin, oranges, banana, carrots, turnip, leek, tomato, grapes, mangoes, pineapple, plums, satsumas and so much more! You could even make a fruit salad from so many tasty fruits! There’s also the option of fruit juices. If you have no juice extractor, you could get one. It is advised to have your fruits and especially vegetables raw to avoid ruining and getting rid of important nutrients. That would mean rendering the diet powerless. So eat them fresh. Also avoid the canned ones. You could even grow your garden if you have the time, you won’t regret it.
Having high levels of LDL cholesterol and doing nothing about it is a careless thing to do, you could be putting your heart at risk. Fortunately, there are easier ways to get to work on your cholesterol levels. Increasing your intake of these foods will do wonders to your body system, not to mention, you’ll be healthier and feel more invigorated for it.
Get eating already!