High cholesterol is a very common condition in the world because of poor lifestyle choices, like lack of exercise and unhealthy diets.
Bad cholesterol that blocks heart arteries and causes heart attacks is known as LDL. Elevated LDL levels cause preventable heart attacks and premature death.
But what is Cholesterol – Can Whole foods lower Cholesterol?
Yes if your diet gave you high cholesterol, it can lower it, too
Did you know that eating some healthy, whole foods can help lower your cholesterol levels ?
Changing what you eat can lower your cholesterol and improve the armada of fats floating through your bloodstream.
Learn to make better food choice, which one is beneficial and the exact ways in which they help with your cholesterol.
How do Whole foods lower cholesterol?
Various foods work in different ways to lower cholesterol.
- Whole Foods provide soluble fiber that attaches to bad cholesterol and removes it from the body before it can enter the bloodstream.
- Whole Foods provide good fats that lower the bad cholesterol, known as, LDL.
- Whole Foods provide plant sterols and stanols that block the absorption of cholesterol.
19 Whole Foods To Lower Cholesterol Levels
Reduce Risk Of Heart Disease
High In Phytonutrients & Antioxidants
Excellent Sources Of Vitamins, Minerals And Fiber
Low In Calories
Beans are second only to wheat bran in soluble fiber content, and they are especially high in cholesterol-lowering soluble fiber.Studies have shown that eating, pinto, black, chickpea, kidney and butter beans can lower bad LDL by 10% in just 6 weeks.
Both beans and lentils contain soluble fiber and are slow to digest in the body, a lot of this fiber is the heart healthy variety that is a good replacement for animal proteins that contain a lot of unhealthy saturated fat that leads to high cholesterol levels.
Loaded with nutrients and low in calories.
Meaty and filling can substitute for a main dish and cut 400 calories from a meal.
Great source of B vitamins, selenium, potassium, riboflavin, niacin, copper, and vitamin D.
Oats, and specifically, steel cut oats also have a lot of soluble fiber and help keep bad cholesterol at bay.
Salmon and sardines have high amounts of omega-3 fatty acids that lowers LDL cholesterol. Sardines also have potent anti-inflammatories that greatly reduce artery clogging triglycerides that block heart arteries. Eating fish two or three times per week is a great way to replace unhealthy animal proteins, such as, red meat.
Avocado is super healthy and contains high amounts of heart healthy monounsaturated fat that helps to raise good cholesterol, HDL, while lowering the bad LDL. They also contain beta-sitosterol that helps to lower cholesterol absorbed from food. Both of these qualities make avocados a true cholesterol fighting powerhouse.Avocados are high in calories, so, it is recommended to eat them in moderation, but, since the Heart Association and other entities recommend a 15% intake of monosaturated fats daily, which means 30 grams in an 1800 calorie diet, one whole avocado fulfills this need as it has 30 grams of the good fat.
Many studies have shown that nuts, including, almonds, peanuts and walnuts are great for heart health and keeping bad cholesterol in check. The recommended 3 ounce of nuts per day can lower LDL and nuts have a variety of other nutrients and heart health benefits.A study conducted in 2008 showed that eating about 2 to 3 ounces of pistachios each day can cause significant improvements in high LDL cholesterol for those diagnosed with the condition.
These nuts supply phytosterols, which is the all-natural plant compound that blocks absorption of dietary cholesterol. Pistachios are also great sources of fiber, monounsaturated fat, and antioxidants, all nutrients essential for heart health.
Whole Grains –
The all-important soluble fiber for fighting cholesterol is found in high amounts in whole grains, like oats, oat bran, wheat bran and barley.
Eggplant and okra –
These two low-calorie vegetables are more good sources of soluble fiber.
Rich in vitamins A, C and Folate.Boosts immunity.Great source of magnesium.Provides beta carotene and lutein linked to anti-aging and prevention of vision related diseases.
Fiber supplements –
Supplements can also be used to fight cholesterol, take two teaspoons of psyllium fiber from products like, Metamucil and you will get 4 grams of heart healthy soluble fiber.
Vegetable oils –
Healthy oils that do not elevate bad cholesterol levels in the blood, include, coconut oil, canola, sunflower, safflower and extra virgin olive oil. Butter and lard are often culprits in high cholesterol and so it is better to use the heart healthy liquid oils instead.
Foods that are soy sources, include tofu, soybeans and soy milk. Studies have shown that consuming 25 grams of soy protein per day can lower LDL by about 5% to 6%.
Chia Seeds and Flaxseeds
Both chia and flaxseeds are extremely high in soluble and insoluble fiber, which can support detoxification and gut health and help with weight loss.
Green tea is the number-one beverage for anti-aging. It helps for heart health since it prevents LDL cholesterol levels from rising. Epidemiological studies suggest that drinking green tea can help reduce atherosclerosis and risk of heart disease, lower blood pressure, reduce inflammation in arthritis cases, and also improve bone density and brain function.
Sweet Potatoes provide a good dose of filling, artery-sweeping fiber in addition to loads of vitamins and antioxidants.
Contain soluble fiber to lower blood cholesterol and glucose levels.
Vitamin C to help the body form connective tissue and keep the capillaries and blood vessels healthy.
Packed with phyto-nutrients to prevent heart disease, some cancers and diabetes.
Promote healthy aging and improve short-term memory.
Excellent source of vitamin C and fiber.
Excellent source of vitamin C, vitamin A and fiber.Low in calories.
One lemon has 100% of daily vitamin C requirements that increases “good” HDL cholesterol and helps to strengthen bones. Flavonoids that inhibit growth of cancer cells and have anti-inflammatory properties.
This way of eating is closely related to the Mediterranean Diet — one of the most highly recommended dietary plans that doctors prescribe to their high-cholesterol patients. People in the countries surrounding the Mediterranean region rely heavily on eating what’s sourced and grown locally rather than packaged foods that are full of refined vegetable oils, sugar, sodium and artificial ingredients.
Foods to Avoid for High Cholesterol
The key to lowering heart disease risk factors, including high cholesterol, is reducing inflammation. Inflammatory foods include:
- packaged foods of all kinds
- refined grain products
- processed vegetable oils
- conventional dairy products (non-organic, homogenized and pasteurized)
- farm-raised animal products
- caffeine or alcohol
To Lower your Cholesterol, eat more of Whole Foods and less of harmful Foods,