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How to lower cholesterol levels? Here are some top cholesterol lowering foods that can help you with lowering your cholesterol levels very quickly.
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Foods That Lower Cholesterol

What Are The Cholesterol Lowering Foods To Eat?

Double your daily fiber intake and watch yourself lose weight quickly.

Whether you have been diagnosed with high cholesterol or you just want to keep a check on your cholesterol levels, knowing about cholesterol and how it functions inside your body is the first and foremost thing.

What is Cholesterol?

Cholesterol is a fat, wax-like substance present in all of our body cells. The basic function of cholesterol is to help body produce hormones, vitamin D and digestive fluids such as bile acids. Our body can make all the cholesterol it needs and liver is a great production source for cholesterol. The foods that are rich in saturated fats such as meat, dairy products, eggs and chicken also produce cholesterol in the body.

Cholesterol present in our bodies is usually in the form of lipoproteins and there are two types of lipoproteins:

  1. Low Density Lipoproteins (LDL) LDL is also known as bad cholesterol because it causes a buildup of cholesterol in your arteries and can lead to heart diseases.
  2. High Density Lipoproteins (HDL). HDL is known as good cholesterol because it carries all the excess cholesterol from your body to the liver and is eventually flushed out of your body.

If you want to lower your cholesterol levels you must eat foods that lower LDL levels and increase HDL levels.

Top 5 foods that lower cholesterol levels:

The strive against cholesterol levels requires a lot of patience, perseverance and a consistent effort. After you have acquired the basic knowledge about cholesterol levels, the next step is to find the foods that help in lowering your cholesterol levels. The key is to replace the saturated, fatty foods in your diet with whole grain, naturally processed foods. Here is a list of foods that lower cholesterol levels and help you live a well-balanced, healthy life.

  1. High-fiber Foods: High fiber foods such as wheat, oats, barley and beans contain a soluble fiber which can absorb the excessive blood cholesterol from your body and flush it out. Fruits such as apples, pears, bananas, oranges, prune, and berries are also rich in fiber. Fiber plays an important role in lowering your LDL’s and the overall cholesterol levels. According to FDA, adults should consume 25-30 grams of fiber in a day.

    There are several ways to incorporate 30 grams of fiber in your diet. Some of the examples include:

    Breakfast: A 1-1/2 cup of oatmeal contains 6 grams of fiber. You can top it off with a handful of bananas and berries to increase the fiber intake to 10-12 grams. Two whole wheat biscuits contain about 5.5 grams of fiber Lunch: Two slices of whole-grain bread contain 3.4 grams of fiber. You can make a sandwich with whole grain bread and complement it with a salad serving. 2 cups of lettuce salad provides 2.4 grams of fiber and a topping of tomatoes, carrots, apples or any other vegetable can add another 4 grams of fiber. This makes a total of 9.8 grams of fiber intake.

    Dinner: Rice, beans and fiber rich vegetables are a great source of fiber and can be taken at dinner time. One cup of brown rice contains 3.5 grams of fiber and ½ cup of kidney beans contains 5.5 grams of fiber. You can take rice with a serving of chicken or baked potato to add another 4 grams of fiber to your meal and, to complement it further, you can added vegetables and fruits as a side dish. One cup of beans salad topped with apples, broccoli or spinach also makes a great fiber rich meal of around 12 grams.

    Here is a list of fruits rich in fiber with complete nutrition facts
    Here is a list of Veggies rich in fiber with complete nutrition facts
  2. Omega-3 fatty acids:

    Omega-3 fatty acids are considered as good fats and actually help in lowering the cholesterol levels. Fish is a great source of omega-3 fatty acids and proteins. It helps in prevention of sudden heart attacks by keeping the cholesterol levels in control. Fish such as Salmon, Mackerel, Sardines and Lake trout contain the highest amount of omega-3 fatty acids.

    The American Heart Association recommends two servings of fish per week. One serving of fish contains ¾ cup of flaked fish or 3.5 ounce of cooked fish. Season your fish with low sodium and low fat seasonings such as herbs and lemon juice and it’s best to bake or grill your fish instead of frying.
  3. Nuts:

    Nuts are rich in fiber, unsaturated fats, vitamin-E and magnesium which can help greatly in lowering the cholesterol levels and maintaining a healthy heart. Nuts are considered as good cholesterol and according to a research, munching on 1.5 ounces of whole walnuts for 6 days a week can lower your cholesterol by 5.4% and LDL by 9.3%, in a month’s time. Almonds, Cashews, Hazelnuts, Chestnuts and Peanuts also contribute as foods that lower cholesterol. On average, consuming 30-35 grams of nuts in a day can lower the overall cholesterol levels by 5%. However, nuts are also rich in calories therefore you should exercise portion control. Two tablespoons of chopped nuts or a handful of mixed nuts can make up for your 35 grams of daily intake but to keep a balance you can also skip for a day or two.

    Here is a list of Nuts and Seeds rich in fiber.
  4. Soy:

    Soy is a great replacement for saturated fats present in our meat and dairy foods. Soy foods contain the protein value of meat and are a good source of cholesterol lowering unsaturated fats. A compound present in soy known as isoflavones plays an important role in lowering the LDL levels in our blood. Some common examples of soy foods are: tofu, soy nuts, soy flour and soy milk. According to FDA recommendation, an adult should consume 25 grams of soy protein in a day.

    There are several ways to incorporate these 25 grams of soy protein in your daily diet:

    Breakfast: A bowl of cereal with soy milk contains 7 grams of proteins or two soy patties contain 11 grams of soy protein. Soy smoothie can provide for 11 grams of your daily intake.
    Lunch: Soy nuts provide 11 grams of soy protein and soy chips or soy nut butter sandwich can make up for 7 grams.
    Dinner: Soy pasta and stir fry with tofu can be great dinner choices. Both contain 13 and 10 grams of soy protein.
  5. Fruits and Vegetables:

    Fruits and vegetables are rich sources of soluble fibers and great sources of unsaturated fat foods. Soluble fibers play a vital role in decreasing the LDL levels in our blood. They can be taken as snacks or as a side dish with lunch and dinner meals.

    One portion is a handful of fruits and veggies and it can include: 3 tablespoons of vegetables, 1 medium tomato, carrot, sweet potato, apple or banana. A bowl of salad or a tablespoon of dried fruit and a 150 ml glass of fruit juice. You can include one or two portions into your daily diet.

Following are some best practices guidelines for lowering and managing your cholesterol level:

  • Incorporating low-fat, unsaturated and natural foods in your diet can help greatly in lowering your cholesterol levels and maintain a good healthy heart.
  • Replace the saturated, processed foods in your diet with natural, whole grain foods and start with baby steps.
  • Begin with small changes like prefer to buy whole wheat bread, cook brown rice instead of white.
  • Use olive oil for cooking food
  • Choose baked or grilled over fried
  • Try to replace meat with sea-food and soy food
  • Keep a track of your cholesterol levels and try to stay in the lower limit.
  • Get in the habit of detoxifying your body once in a month; it helps greatly to lower your cholesterol levels quickly.

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