Foods That Fight High Cholesterol
It’s easy to eat your way to an alarmingly high cholesterol level. And the reverse is true too changing what you eat can lower your cholesterol and improve the composition of the armada of fats floating through your bloodstream. Fresh fruits and vegetables, whole grains, and “good fats” are all part of a heart-healthy diet. But some foods are particularly good at helping bring down cholesterol.
How? Some cholesterol-lowering foods deliver a good dose of soluble fiber, which binds cholesterol and its precursors in the digestive system and drags them out of the body before they get into circulation. Others provide polyunsaturated fats, which directly lower LDL, or “bad” cholesterol. And those with plant sterols and stanols keep the body from absorbing cholesterol. Here are 5 of those foods:
Are You Serious About Reducing Cholesterol
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Whats The Difference Between Good Cholesterol And Bad Cholesterol
Cholesterol swims in your blood bound to proteins called lipoproteins. These come in two versions LDL bad cholesterol and HDL good cholesterol.
LDL is the bad type of cholesterol because its high levels in the blood can form plaques in your arteries.
HDL is the good type because it carries cholesterol back to the liver where its broken down.
Cholesterol tests show the results for both.
Ideally, the HDL levels should be above 1mmol/L and the LDL levels under 3 mmol/L.
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Lower Cholesterol To Prevent Heart Attack And Stroke
If you need to lower your cholesterol, you can take steps each day that will help. First, if you’re taking a cholesterol-lowering drug, remember to stick to your daily medication schedule. If you can then pick up some heart-healthy habits, you may see your numbers start to improve in only a matter of weeks, says Chauncey Crandall, MD, a cardiologist at Palm Beach Gardens Medical Center and Good Samaritan Medical Center in West Palm Beach, Florida.
Lowering your cholesterol not only reduces your risk for heart disease, but also helps prevent heart attack and stroke. So what are you waiting for? Heres a weeks worth of tips one a day that will have you seeing better numbers in no time.
Is Fasting Good For High Cholesterol
Intermittent fasting alternates between periods of eating and periods of fasting. The fasting method you follow depends on goals and comfort level. For example, some people follow the 16/8 method, which involves fasting daily for 16 hours and eating for 8 hours. Another popular fasting style is the eat-stop-eat method which requires fasting for 24 hours once or twice per week.
When it comes to fasting and high cholesterol, one2021 study published in Frontiers in Nutrition found that intermittent fasting may protect cardiovascular health by improving lipid profile. More specifically, the researchers found that it raises HDL levels, which is the good or protective cholesterol.
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Triglycerides In Your Blood
In addition to cholesterol, your blood also contains a type of fat called triglycerides, which are stored in your bodys fat deposits. Hormones release triglycerides to make energy between meals.
When you eat, your body converts any extra energy it doesnt need right away into triglycerides.
Like cholesterol, your body needs triglycerides to work properly. However, there is evidence to suggest that some people with high triglycerides are at increased risk of heart disease and stroke.
If you regularly eat more energy than you need, you may have high triglycerides .
Diet To Reduce Cholesterol
Making a few changes to the diet you follow on a daily basis can reduce cholesterol levels to a great extent. Why resort to drug therapy, when you can achieve the same results by going on a TLC diet instead? A TLC or Therapeutic Lifestyle Change Diet is a diet low in trans and saturated fats and high in soluble fibres and proteins. The TLC diet is an effective way to reduce cholesterol levels. If you get on this diet, you are supposed to consume less than 7% of your total calorie requirement from saturated fats and intake dietary cholesterol below 200 milligrams. You are encouraged to up your fruit, whole grain, vegetable, poultry, fish, lean meat and low-fat dairy product intake as part of the TLC diet.
Individuals on the TLC diet are advised to only consume as many calories as they require, to avoid unnecessary weight gain. You are asked to maintain a healthy weight on this diet. Soluble fibers, which have LDL-lowering capabilities are advised for consumption as part of the diet.
Cholesterol reducing foods such as high fibre food, I.e. bran, oatmeal, olive oil, pear, apples and food with plant sterol additives are healthy food items that you should include in your daily diet to keep the problem at bay. Ideally, one must follow a balanced diet to ensure no unnecessary weight gain so that you can keep your cholesterol levels down. Learn more about the ideal diet plan for you here.
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Try Having One Vegetarian Meal Every Week
Dont let the word vegetarian scare you. By choosing a smartly prepared vegetarian meal, youre hitting multiple cholesterol-lowering goals at the same time, like eating healthier fats and getting more soluble fiber. Plus, many vegetarian meals are just as flavorful and filling as their meaty cousins.
Heres one idea for a low-cholesterol recipe: Try a freshly prepared salad with a sesame vinaigrette and some grilled, spiced tofu. For dessert, add some fresh blueberries, strawberries and oats to low-fat vanilla yogurt.
The key here is to build up a routine, like making every Tuesday night vegetarian night. Once that becomes the norm, try expanding to different nights, or add a weekly vegetarian lunch, too. You can also be flexitarian by just eating smaller portions of meat. Over time, these modifications can really add up and pay off.
Thursday: Savor Some Salmon For Dinner
Get into the habit of choosing salmon over steak and youll be doing your heart a favor. Adding fish to your diet is beneficial in two ways, according to the American Heart Association. First, youre replacing meat, which is often high in LDL-raising saturated fat, with fish, which is low in saturated fats. Youre also getting beneficial omega-3 fats from fish, which lower triglyceride levels . Thats a double win, Kramer says.
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Aspects Of Cholesterol Problems
In and of itself, cholesterol is not a bad thing: It’s present in every cell in the body and does a lot of goodsupporting the production of hormones, digestion, and converting sunlight into vitamin D. Approximately 75 percent of the cholesterol present in the blood is produced by the liver, but the rest is derived from the diet, which is why making dietary changes is an effective way to keep cholesterol levels healthy.
There are two types of cholesterol:
- Low-density lipoprotein cholesterol is regarded as “bad cholesterol.” It’s the soft, waxy stuff that can accumulate in the bloodstream and interfere with the flow of blood.
- High-density lipoprotein the so-called “good cholesterol”helps keep blood vessels clear by carrying LDL cholesterol to the liver for disposal.
|Cholesterol Level Guidelines for Adults 20 and Older|
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Treatment For High Cholesterol
Making lifestyle changes, especially changing some of the foods you eat, and regular physical activity, are very important to help reduce high LDL cholesterol.
You may also need to take cholesterol-lowering medicines to help manage your cholesterol and reduce your risk of having a heart attack or stroke. Talk to your doctor about finding the most appropriate treatment for you.
Excess Bad Cholesterol Can Lead To Heart Disease Or Stroke So Take Into Account A Few Steps To Manage Your Cholesterol Levels
Written by Editorial Team | Updated : April 16, 2014 4:02 PM IST
Excess bad cholesterol can lead to heart disease or stroke, so take into account a few steps to manage your cholesterol levels. Here are five foods that can bring down cholesterol levels:
Superfruits: Following recent nutritional studies, several fruits have been labeled ‘superfoods’ due to their ability to combat harmful fats and reduce bad cholesterol. For instance, it was recently revealed that strawberries have the ability to reduce LDL, the harmful form of cholesterol, by nearly 14 percent, according to research carried out by Universit Politecnica Delle Marche in Italy. Read fruit juices VS fruits – which is healthier?
Unsaturated fats: Consuming omega-3 essential fatty acids, found in unsaturated fats, will help to lower the levels of bad cholesterol in the blood. Unsaturated fats include oily fish, nuts and seeds, ground flax seeds, olive oil and certain vegetables and fruits such as avocado.
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What About Eggs Should I Avoid Them
For years, medical professionals have told people to avoid eggs because of their cholesterol content . I see it quite often, patients come to me and have swapped their protein-rich egg breakfast for a cold cereal higher in sugar and lower in protein.
The effect of the cholesterol we eat on the cholesterol content in our blood is not strong . In fact, the U.S. Dietary Guidelines for Americans even removed their cholesterol restriction in 2015. We shouldnt be eating 5-egg omelets every day with highly processed meats. But, 1-2 eggs paired with high fiber foods can be a healthy breakfast option to keep us satisfied until our next meal or snack.
Drop The Ketosis And Eat More Fiber
There is a common misunderstanding that a low-carb diet has to be ketogenic.
That is, that carbs should be low enough for the body to start producing ketones out of fatty acids.
This type of diet appears to be the most effective for people with epilepsy. Many people also claim to get the best results, mental and physical, when theyre in ketosis.
However more modest carb restriction can still be considered low-carb.
Although there is no clear definition, anything up to 100-150 grams per day can be classified as a low-carb diet.
It is possible that some individuals see cholesterol increases when theyre in ketosis, but improve when they eat just enough carbs to avoid going into ketosis.
You can try eating 1-2 pieces of fruit per day maybe a potato or sweet potato with dinner, or small servings of healthier starches like rice and oats.
Depending on your metabolic health and personal preferences, you could also just adopt a higher-carb version of paleo instead.
This can also be a very healthy diet, as demonstrated by long-living populations like the Kitavans and Okinawans, who ate a lot of carbs.
Although ketosis can have many incredible benefits, it is definitely not for everyone.
Exercising, getting better sleep and minimizing stress levels can also help.
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Remove Bulletproof Coffee From Your Diet
Bulletproof coffee is very trendy in the low-carb and paleo communities.
It involves adding 1-2 tablespoons of MCT oil and 2 tablespoons of butter into your morning cup of coffee.
I havent tried it myself, but many people claim that it tastes delicious, gives them energy and kills their appetite.
However, even though normal amounts of something are good for you, it doesnt mean that massive amounts are better.
All the studies showing that saturated fat is harmless used normal amounts that is, amounts that the average person consumes.
There is no way to know what happens if you start adding massive amounts of saturated fat to your diet, especially if youre eating it instead of other more nutritious foods. This certainly isnt something that humans evolved doing.
Ive also heard reports from low-carb friendly docs (Drs Spencer Nadolsky and Karl Nadolsky. They had low-carb patients with massively increased cholesterol whose levels normalized when they stopped drinking bulletproof coffee.
If you drink bulletproof coffee and have cholesterol problems, then the first thing you should do is try removing this from your diet.
Try removing bulletproof coffee from your diet. This alone may be sufficient to solve your problem.
Whole Grains And Oat Bran
Oat bran is an excellent source of a soluble fiber known asbeta-glucan, which may reduce the amount of cholesterol in your blood. Also, increasing your intake of whole grains like brown rice, bulgur, quinoa, and steel-cut oats can help lower LDL cholesterol levels, according to a 2015 systematic review published in The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition.
There are two types of fiber: soluble fiber and insoluble fiber. Soluble fiber is the main cholesterol-lowering fiber type. Blatner says fiber can act like a sponge to soak up excess cholesterol and remove it from the body. Including foods with soluble fiber in your diet can helpreduce LDL cholesterol.
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Use Alcohol In Moderation
When used in moderation, the ethanol in alcoholic drinks increases HDL and reduces the risk of heart disease.
A study of 18 adult women found that drinking 24 grams of alcohol from white wine daily improved HDL by 5%, compared to drinking equal amounts of white grape juice .
Alcohol also improves reverse cholesterol transport, meaning cholesterol is removed from blood and vessel walls and taken back to the liver. This reduces the risk of clogged arteries and heart disease .
While moderate alcohol intake reduces heart disease risk, too much alcohol harms the liver and increases the risk of dependence. The recommended limit is two drinks daily for men and one for women .
12 drinks per day may improve HDL cholesterol and reduce the risk of clogged arteries. However, heavier alcohol use increases heart disease risk and harms the liver.
What Is Cholesterol And What Role Does It Play In The Body
Cholesterol is a type of fat and has a soft, waxy consistency. Its a crucial component of your cell membranes, bile, vitamin D and several hormones.
Small cholesterol particles float in your blood as they are transported either from or to the liver for processing.
Generally, cholesterol is recycled in the digestive system. The liver uses it to make bile, which is stored in the gallbladder. It then travels into the small intestine to help the digestive process. About 50% of this bile is then reabsorbed through the gut back into the bloodstream.
Your body produces its own cholesterol according to its needs so you dont need it in your diet.
The trouble is, your body makes cholesterol from saturated and hydrogenated fats you eat and theres no limit. So long as you keep supplying these fats, your body keeps making cholesterol from them.
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What Is ‘bad’ Cholesterol
Whilst cholesterol is seen as the enemy of a healthy diet, we actually need the fatty substance to stay healthy. “It’s needed to make cell membranes, various hormones, certain vitamins and bile salts which are important for the digestion of fat,” explains Garton.
The problem comes when there are high levels of cholesterol in the blood, increasing the risk of heart disease, stroke and vascular dementia. The risk increases the longer the higher cholesterol is left untreated.
There are actually two main types of cholesterol involved: low-density lipoprotein and high-density lipoprotein .
“LDL is the main carrier of cholesterol in the blood and is often called ‘bad’ cholesterol because too much LDL cholesterol can build up in your arteries and cause narrowing,” says Garton. “HDL is often called ‘good’ as it picks up excess cholesterol from the arteries and takes it back to the liver where it can be removed from the circulation. As well as LDL cholesterol, other non-HDL cholesterol is considered ‘bad’ as it can also contribute to fatty build-up in the arteries.
“The ideal situation is to have low non-HDL cholesterol. It’s also important that your HDL cholesterol does not drop too low.”