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Is Chocolate Bad For Cholesterol

Beans: Healthy Pintos And Garbanzos Stand Out

Dark Chocolate For Bad Cholesterol Level

All types of;beans and other legumes; pinto, red, white, navy, black, garbanzo,;lima, and lentil, for example are excellent;sources of soluble fiber. Fiber;binds to cholesterol-laden bile salts in the small intestine and promotes their excretion along with waste. When this happens, the liver must use more cholesterol to produce more bile salts, therefore lowering the amount of cholesterol available to make;LDL.

Still,;results of;nutrition surveys published in January 2016 in;PLoS;One;show that awareness of the cholesterol-lowering benefits of beans is low. Eating as little as one half cup of cooked pinto beans per day may lower total cholesterol and;LDL;cholesterol significantly, noted a study published in the;Journal of the American College of Nutrition;in June 2007.

Are You Serious About Reducing Cholesterol

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Raises Hdl And Protects Ldl From Oxidation

Consuming dark chocolate can improve several important risk factors for heart disease.

In a controlled study, cocoa powder was found to significantly decrease oxidized LDL cholesterol in men. It also increased HDL and lowered total LDL for those with high cholesterol .

Oxidized LDL means that the LDL cholesterol has reacted with free radicals.

This makes the LDL particle itself reactive and capable of damaging other tissues, such as the lining of the arteries in your heart.

It makes perfect sense that cocoa lowers oxidized LDL. It contains an abundance of powerful antioxidants that do make it into the bloodstream and protect lipoproteins against oxidative damage (

However, dark chocolate also contains sugar, which can have the opposite effect.


Dark chocolate improves several important risk factors for disease. It lowers the susceptibility of LDL to oxidative damage while increasing HDL and improving insulin sensitivity.

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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 .;

Egg Yolk And Bad Cholesterol

The Many Benefits of Dark Chocolate

Only the egg yolk contains 200 mg of cholesterol and despite being a controversial food on the subject of cholesterol.

Both specialists and doctors indicate that its consumption should be restricted in people with problems regulating their cholesterol levels and those with a high risk of cardiovascular disease.

On the other hand, a study published by the NCBI investigated the relationship of the frequency of consumption of egg yolk with the development of diseases related to high cholesterol levels.

Data from 1262 patients at a Canadian vascular prevention clinic indicated that those with a 3x weekly consumption of egg yolk significantly raise cholesterol levels.

Concluding that frequent consumption of egg yolk is directly related to the risk of developing cardiovascular diseases.;

Nutritionally substitute for:;;On a nutritional level, the egg yolk can be replaced by flaxseeds, sesame, quinoa, seaweed, green leafy vegetables and fruits such as orange, papaya, among others.

Substitute in the kitchen: A good alternative to replace the ligneous texture of the egg is to use linseed molasses which allows the ingredients of preparation to be integrated just as the egg does

Also Check: How Many Strawberries A Day To Lower Cholesterol

Apples: Rich In Fiber And Beneficial Antioxidants

As with beans, apples are an excellent source of LDL-lowering soluble fiber, primarily pectin. Research published in December 2014 in the;European Journal of Nutrition;also shows that eating an apple a day can slow the oxidation of LDL cholesterol. This health benefit comes thanks to antioxidant polyphenols found primarily in apple skin .;Antioxidants;are important because inflammation and;plaque buildup in the arteries;are more likely to occur when LDL cholesterol interacts with free radicals and becomes oxidized.

Economical Ideas For Meals & Snacks

  • FISH
  • Grill and serve with peas or baked beans.
  • Boiled chicken gives stock for soup and gravy. Remember to allow liquids to cool and skim off solidified fat. To make gravy, flavour the stock with different vegetables and herbs. Thicken with corn flour.
  • Frozen turkey fillets are good value. There is no waste and they can be cooked and flavoured with vegetables, herbs or curry powder.
  • Remove the skin of chicken and turkey before eating. This contains fat.
  • Try lentils in a curry, or casseroles. Use only a small amount of oil in cooking. This makes a tasty, economical dish.
  • COTTAGE CHEESEGive extra flavour by adding:
  • Chopped chives and onions
  • A pinch of curry powder and some sultanas
  • Chopped celery
  • Serve with salad or something with s strong taste, like boiled beetroot.
  • Use less. Try swapping for Turkey or Pork mince -much less fat use chicken stock cube with it instead of beef, very tasty.
  • Skim off fat after cooking and bulk out the dish by adding lentils and/or lots of vegetables.
  • Try serving with wholemeal spaghetti, boiled brown rice, or jacket potatoes, for extra fibre.
  • STEW
  • Use a leaner cut of stewing beef, but by less. Add butter beans or kidney beans to make the dish go further .
  • Buy a small amount of lean beef ham per person and make beef olives. Use a finely chopped cabbage, onion, carrot and seasoning stuffing.
  • Small, thick slices of lean cooked pork shoulder can be lightly grilled with pineapple or tomato.
  • Tuna
  • Bananas or Tomatoes
  • Read Also: Are Baked Potatoes High In Cholesterol

    Flavanol Content In Dark Milk And White Chocolate

    The cocoa content of dark chocolate varies widely from 35% to 95%. In general, the higher the cocoa content the higher the flavanol content and the more bitter the flavour, although this is not always the case as the processing method also has an impact.

    Manufacturers dont include flavanol content on their labels so it is not possible to know the exact flavanol content, but to give a rough idea: ;

    • 20g of dark chocolate contains 34mg of flavanols
    • 20g of milk chocolate contains 14mg of flavanols
    • 20g of white chocolate contains no flavanols.

    Health Benefits Of Dark Chocolate

    Oat Chocolate Smoothie – Helps Control Cholesterol

    In addition to heart health, dark chocolate is also linked to other wellness improvements, including the following:

    • Lower body mass index
    • Enhanced eyesight
    • UV protection

    Not a fan of dark chocolate? Try swapping out almonds instead. Almonds have been proven to possess many of the same benefits as dark chocolate, when eating one-third cup.

    Limiting your intake of LDL cholesterol can help keep your arteries free from cholesterol buildup and lower your risk of heart disease. By incorporating dark chocolate into your daily nutrition, you can improve your well-being and create a heart-healthy diet.

    Want to learn more about your heart health? Take our free, online heart risk assessment today.

    Also Check: What Do My Cholesterol Numbers Mean

    Cholesterol And Your Body

    Cholesterol is a waxy substance created by the liver. Its attached to most cells in your body. Cholesterol performs many essential functions, such as forming cell membranes, regulating hormones, and producing vitamin D.

    Low-density lipoprotein is known as the bad cholesterol. Its ratio of fat to protein is high. Doctors may get concerned with high LDL cholesterol levels because too much can cause heart disease, which is currently the leading cause of death in America for both men and women.

    Unlike popular belief, not all cholesterol is bad and the body needs it. High-density lipoprotein cholesterol, or the good cholesterol, has a higher ratio of protein to fat. It helps prevent buildup, which can lead to stroke, by transporting excess cholesterol to your liver for breakdown and removal.

    HDL cholesterol can be improved by

    • quitting smoking
    • pastries
    • processed foods

    Your blood cholesterol levels are not significantly impacted by the cholesterol found in food, but rather are more influenced by the types of fat you eat, whether unsaturated, saturated, or trans.

    The American Heart Association recommends that all adults over age 20 have their cholesterol checked annually. You are more likely to develop high cholesterol if you:

    • smoke
    • are over 45 or 55
    • have a family history of high cholesterol
    • live a sedentary lifestyle

    Eat More Plant Sources Of Protein

    Excellent plant proteins include beans all beans, like lentils, red beans, pinto beans, and soybeans. Rather than raising blood cholesterol levels, as animal sources of protein do, beans actually help lower cholesterol.

    Beans also help reduce blood sugar and insulin levels, and may even lower cancer risk.

    Recommended Reading: Can High Cholesterol Cause Elevated Liver Enzymes

    Organic Cows Milk And Cholesterol

    Whole cows milk contains 146 calories, 5 grams of saturated fat, and 24 milligrams of cholesterol in a 1 cup or 8 ounce serving. Its a tremendous and nutrients, contains essential vitamins and minerals, and provides a third of a persons daily recommended intake of calcium, Krivitsky says.;Cows milk also;contains potassium, which may help prevent;high blood pressure;. What’s more, a;study published in December 2013 in the journal PLoS One;found that organic cows milk contains significantly more anti-inflammatory omega-3 fatty acids than conventional milk, which is important because omega-3s promote heart health.

    But when it comes to your cholesterol levels, high-fat dairy could get you into trouble, says John Day, MD, cardiologist and medical director at Intermountain Heart Rhythm Specialists in Salt Lake City. Saturated fat in your diet raises LDL cholesterol, which increases your risk of heart disease and stroke, according to the American Heart Association.;If you drink cow’s milk, most doctors recommend low-fat or nonfat versions. A 1-cup serving of skim milk has 83 calories, no saturated fat, and only 5 mg of cholesterol.

    Coconut Milk Beverage: No Cholesterol High In Saturated Fat

    Is Chocolate Bad For High Cholesterol

    This option adds natural sweetness to your coffee, oatmeal, or cereal, and has only 45 calories in an 8-oz glass and no cholesterol. One cup of unsweetened;coconut milk beverage contains 4 g of saturated fat, but most of it is made up of medium-chain fatty acids, which may have some health advantages. Some populations eat a lot of coconut and dont get heart disease, Day says.

    But there’s not enough research to conclude that coconuts and coconut milk are a heart-healthy choice when you have high cholesterol.

    The final verdict is still out, says Lavinia Butuza, RD, a nutritionist in Sacramento, California. Heart patients need to be careful with anything coconut, and treat all saturated fats as the same, for now.

    Read Also: Is Shrimp Bad For Your Cholesterol

    The Benefits Of Eating Chocolate

    • Combat depression. Eating chocolate significantly increases levels of serotonin, the neurotransmitter responsible for pleasure and well-being, which is very low in depressed states.
    • Increased libido. Chocolate is an amazing natural aphrodisiac, and its intake is linked to libido levels, especially for women.
    • Rich in magnesium: This mineral is found in cocoa, and chocolate is an excellent antioxidant.
    • Keep your heart healthy: In addition to all the benefits you may experience, chocolate keeps your heart strong and healthy thanks to its high flavonoid content.
    • This article is purely informative not authorized for any medical prescription. If you have any illness or discomfort, you are advised to consult your doctor.

    Does Stress Cause High Cholesterol

    There is compelling evidence that your level of stress can cause an increase in bad cholesterol indirectly. For example, one study found that stress is positively linked to having less healthy dietary habits, a higher body weight, and a less healthy diet, all of which are known risk factors for high cholesterol.

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    The 20 Worst Foods For High Cholesterol

    Cholesterol is a strange thing: too much, and youre in a trouble, too little, and youre in just as much. With too little, our bodies cant function normally. With too much, we increase our risk of heart disease, stroke, blood clots, and a litany of other unmentionables. While low cholesterol isnt a concern for the vast majority of us, high cholesterol is. While the condition can sometimes be inherited , most of the time its down to lifestyle choices. Even if you exercise enough to look trim and healthy, you could still be in for a world of trouble if youre regularly filling your belly with less than optimal foods.

    The real kick in the teeth is that high cholesterol is symptomless: unless you take a blood test to detect your levels, the first time most people realize they have the condition is when they fall ill as a result of it. Of course, regular testing is a great way of working out exactly whats going on in your body , but prevention is always better than cure.

    Fortunately, a few tweaks to your lifestyle can slash your risk of developing the disease, keeping you trouble-free and healthy into a ripe old age. The first thing to understand is what factors increase the risk of bad cholesterol .

    Make Your Own Macaroni And Cheese With A Healthy Twist

    10 Good Cholesterol Foods For You

    The typical mac-and-cheese ingredients whole milk, butter, and cheese are loaded with saturated fat. But this all-American comfort recipe does not have to be a cholesterol-inducing food. By substituting 1 percent milk and evaporated milk for butter and whole milk, and using reduced-fat cheese, you can decrease the calories and have;macaroni and cheese with about a third less fat and saturated fat compared with the traditional recipe.

    Read Also: How Many Mg Of Cholesterol A Day

    Here Are Some General Guidelines To Follow:

    Many of us add unnecessary fat to a meal because of the way we cook. ;Suitable methods of cooking include boiling, baking, stewing, or steaming .

  • DO NOT FRY,;GRILL instead.If necessary, add a little corn oil or sunflower-seed oil in place of lard, dripping or blended vegetable oil. Non-stick pots and pans are easier if you are only using a little oil.
  • POTATOESboil or bake in these skins. Eat homemade chips cooked in corn oil, occasionally as a treat. Drain them well.
  • EAT MOREChicken and fish. Always trim fat off meat.
  • SELDOM EATMeat products like pies, bridies, sausages, black pudding, haggis, pate and salami. These contain large amounts of saturated fats, the main fats that need to be reduced.
  • MILKUse semi-skimmed milk or, better still, skimmed milk, instead of ordinary full-cream milk . Look for skimmed milk or skimmed milk with added vitamins A and D. Try low fat yoghurts.
  • EGGSEat no more than two or three eggs a week. We eat hidden eggs in various products and recipes. Yolks contain fat and cholesterol.
  • CHEESEIf you eat a lot of cheese, try to limit this to small quantities, twice a week. Try the types which have less fat than cheddar, like Edam, Camembert or slimmers cheeses, which have half the fat of ordinary cheese. Cottage cheese has very little fat.
  • EAT LESSButter and margarine. Use a thin spread only. Try a low fat spread or a soft margarine. High in polyunsaturates. Use sparingly.
  • Dont increase sugar and sugary foods.
  • Eat less salt.
  • How Chocolate Is Made

    First the beans of the cacao tree are fermented, which helps develop their flavours and aromas. They are then cleaned, dried and roasted. The outer casing of the beans is discarded, leaving behind cacao nibs. These nibs are ground down into liquid form, also known as chocolate liquor.

    Chocolate liquor contains around 50% cocoa solids and 50% cocoa butter. Cocoa butter is the natural fat found in cacao beans, and when you press it out, you are left with cocoa solids. These solids can then be ground into a powder; these solids are the ones that provide the majority of chocolates health benefits.

    Chocolate liquor is processed to give you the three types of chocolate:

    Dark chocolate

    This type of chocolate is mostly made up of cocoa solids and cocoa butter, and a little bit of sugar. If you have eaten dark chocolate before, you know the packaging comes with percentage labels such as 85% cacao or 70% cacao.

    This number tells you how much cocoa solids and cocoa butter the chocolate contains. The rest of the dark chocolate is made up of other ingredients.

    Milk chocolate

    Milk chocolate contains milk powder, which is added to give it a creamier and milder taste. It also tends to have larger amounts of added sugar than dark chocolate, to make it more palatable.

    White chocolate

    White chocolate is made from cocoa butter, sugar & milk and does not contain any cocoa solids.

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    If That Was Not Enough Chocolate May Not Only Be Safe In Diabetes But Even Helpful

    The main problem in Type 2 diabetes mellitus is that the body becomes resistant to insulin.

    Since the cells of the body need insulin in order to absorb sugar, insulin resistance leads to low amounts of sugar in the cells and increased levels of sugar in the blood .

    The flavinoid molecules in chocolate may reduce insulin sensitivity.

    In other words, dark chocolate and cocoa has chemicals within it that can delay or improve diabetes.

    Chocolate And Cholesterol References

    Is Chocolate Bad For High Cholesterol

    Allen RR, Carson L, Kwik-Uribe C, Evans EM, Erdman JW Jr. Daily consumption of a dark chocolate containing flavanols and added sterol esters affects cardiovascular risk factors in a normotensive population with elevated cholesterol. J Nutr 138:725-31.

    Bonanome A, Grundy S. Effect of dietary stearic acid on plasma cholesterol and lipoprotein levels. N Engl J Med 318:1244-8.

    Grassi D, Necozione S, Lippi C, et al. Cocoa reduces blood pressure and insulin resistance and improves endothelium-dependent vasodilation in hypertensives. Hypertension 46:398-405.

    Kris-Etherton PM, Derr JA, Mustad VA, Seligson FH, Pearson TA Effects of a milk chocolate bar per day substituted for a high-carbohydrate snack in young men on an NCEP/AHA Step 1 Diet. Am J Clin Nutr 60:1037S-1042S.

    Kris-Etherton PM, Mustad VA. Chocolate feeding studies: a novel approach for evaluating the plasma lipid effects of stearic acid. Am J Clin Nutr 60:1029S-1036S.

    Tholstrup I, Marckmann P. Jespersen J, Sandstrom B. Fat high in stearic acid favorably affects blood lipids and factor VII coagulant activity in comparison with fats high in palmitic acid or high in myristic and lauric acids. Am J Clin Nutr 59:371-7.

    Tholstrup I, Marckmann P. Jespersen J, Vessby B, Jail A, Sandstrom B. Effect on blood lipids, coagulation, and fibrinolysis of a fat high in myristic acid and a fat high in palmitic acid. Am J Clin Nutr 60:919-25.


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