Best Way To Lower Cholesterol Through Diet

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How to Reduce Cholesterol Through Diet

Itâs no secret that certain foods can help you lower your LDL cholesterol, which causes a buildup of plaque in the arteries that leads to heart disease, heart attacks, and stroke. But what may surprise you is that many of these foods are delicious and easy to incorporate into your everyday meals without sacrificing flavor or fun.

Start A Healthy Plan And Make A Delicious Recipe

One of the best ways to reduce or prevent high cholesterol is to cut back on the foods that cause it. Those include trans fats, often listed as partially hydrogenated oil on cookie and cracker packages, and saturated fats, found mostly in meat, cheese and butter. To replace those foods, eat more high-fiber plant foods and heart-healthy fats the foods known to lower cholesterol. We list seven of these superfoods below. If overhauling your entire diet sounds too hard, try making just one change per week to make healthy changes that stick.

Week 1: Opt for oats for breakfastOats just might be the perfect way to start your day. They energize you, keep you regular and have more soluble fiber the kind that kicks out bad LDL cholesterol than any other grain. You dont even have to cook them see below for the easiest recipe ever. Other good grain choices are oat bran, barley and whole grains in general.

Week 2: Add an apple a dayApples are high in pectin, another type of soluble fiber that lowers LDL cholesterol. Strawberries, blueberries, grapes and oranges also pack loads of pectin and other nutrients that give them their vibrant colors, so load up.

Week 4: Have a handful of nutsSnacking on a small handful of walnuts, almonds, peanuts, hazelnuts or pistachios every day can lower bad cholesterol by about 5 percent, studies show. The unsaturated fats in nuts are good for your heart too, unlike the saturated or trans fats in salami, cheese and many crackers.

Stop Smoking If You Smoke

If you are a smoker, then you probably already know all the reasons why you shouldn’t smoke.

But did you know that if you are a smoker with high cholesterol, and a close family member already has heart disease, then you have a ten times greater risk of developing heart disease than somebody with a normal cholesterol who doesn’t smoke?

Smoking is hard on your arteries. It damages their lining, leading to inflammation which increases the build-up of plaque – plaque is a waxy substance composed of cholesterol, fibrin, and calcium that narrows your arteries, making it harder for your heart to pump blood around your body.

Smoking also increases LDL and triglyceride levels. At the same time, it lowers HDL cholesterol levels. But research has shown that within a few weeks of quitting, HDL levels have mostly returned to normal in ex-smokers. Within a few years, your risk of a heart attack has also decreased significantly.

We all know quitting is hard, so gather up some support and take advantage of a number of free resources available, such as:

  • 1-800-QUIT-NOW: Free phone-based service with coaches and referrals to local resources
  • Smokefree.gov: Web-based quit-smoking advice
  • 1-800-DÃJELO-YA : en Espanol.

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When A Doctor Will Recommend Medication

“For some patients who don’t respond well to lifestyle changes, it is necessary to take medication,” says Massachi. This may include those with a family history of high cholesterol, and those who also have cardiovascular diseases or type 2 diabetes.

In these cases, Massachi says taking cholesterol medication can lower your cholesterol levels, and also help manage other pre-existing conditions. You should talk with your doctor if you think this might be the right option for you.

What Is The Mediterranean Diet

How to Naturally Reduce Bad #Cholesterol Levels Through # ...

Close your eyes and imagine that you are dining al fresco at a Mediterranean villa or seaside on a Greek island. What are you eating? Are you quickly scarfing down a fast-food cheeseburger and extra-large soda? Or are you leisurely dining on a dish made with olive oil, vegetables, grains, and seeds? And are you eating alone, or are you dining with other people and enjoying the process of eating a meal?

The Mediterranean diet is modeled after the way that most people eat when they live by the Mediterranean Sea. And although it is called the Mediterranean diet, it is actually more of a lifestyle that many people who live in this part of the world embrace. They dine with family and friends, stay active, and rarely stuff their faces when they have a free moment during a red-light stop in the car. The TV is off and they are focused on what they are eating.

Those who follow the Mediterranean diet tend to avoid added sugars, highly processed and refined foods, and heavily processed meats. Instead, they focus on whole foods that are nutrient-dense and loaded with antioxidants.

  • unfried fish
  • smaller amounts of dairy, chicken, and lean beef

Overall, it is a diet rich in whole foods and plant-based meals. Oh yeah, and you can have some wine with your meals too.

READ MORE:Wine May Reduce Your Risk of This Health Condition as You Age, New Study Says

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Are You Serious About Reducing Cholesterol

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Putting Together A Low Cholesterol Diet

When it comes to investing money, experts recommend creating a portfolio of diverse investments instead of putting all your eggs in one basket. The same holds true for eating your way to lower cholesterol. Adding several foods to lower cholesterol in different ways should work better than focusing on one or two.

A largely vegetarian “dietary portfolio of cholesterol-lowering foods” substantially lowers LDL, triglycerides, and blood pressure. The key dietary components are plenty of fruits and vegetables, whole grains instead of highly refined ones, and protein mostly from plants. Add margarine enriched with plant sterols oats, barley, psyllium, okra, and eggplant, all rich in soluble fiber soy protein and whole almonds.

Of course, shifting to a cholesterol-lowering diet takes more attention than popping a daily statin. It means expanding the variety of foods you usually put in your shopping cart and getting used to new textures and flavors. But it’s a “natural” way to lower cholesterol, and it avoids the risk of muscle problems and other side effects that plague some people who take statins.

Just as important, a diet that is heavy on fruits, vegetables, beans, and nuts is good for the body in ways beyond lowering cholesterol. It keeps blood pressure in check. It helps arteries stay flexible and responsive. It’s good for bones and digestive health, for vision and mental health.

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Ask About Cholesterol Medication

Cholesterol medications such as statins may be the fastest way to lower cholesterol for some people usually within 6 to 8 weeks. This allows a person to quickly reduce their heart disease risk while cultivating a healthy lifestyle. During this period, a person can focus on lowering cholesterol over time with lifestyle and dietary changes.

Because high cholesterol is a risk factor for serious heart health issues, the American Heart Association and American College of Cardiology recommend statins for many groups of people with high LDL cholesterol.

If LDL cholesterol does not drop enough with diet and lifestyle changes and statins, a person might need additional medications.

Sample Meal Ideas To Lower Ldl Cholesterol

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Breakfast

  • Oatmeal, 100% rolled oats or steel-cut, 1 cup cooked with 1% milk with 2 Tbsp. walnuts, 1 tsp brown sugar and 1 medium banana

  • 1 hard-boiled egg, 1 slice whole wheat toast with 1 tsp jam and 1 orange

  • 1 cup whole grain cereal with 4 oz. 1% milk and ½ cup fresh or frozen berries

  • 1 slice of whole wheat toast with 1 Tbsp. natural peanut butter and ½ cup sliced strawberries

  • 2 egg whites scrambled with 1 cup fresh spinach, seasoned with black pepper or salt-free seasoning, and a medium apple

Lunch and Dinner

Snacks

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Foods That Lower Cholesterol

A persons diet plays a crucial role in how healthy their cholesterol levels are. Eating foods that keep cholesterol within a healthy range can help prevent health issues, including a heart attack or stroke.

Cholesterol is a waxy substance that travels through the bloodstream as a part of two different lipoproteins: low-density lipoprotein and high-density lipoprotein .

People sometimes refer to LDL cholesterol as bad cholesterol because it causes fatty deposits to build up in the blood vessels. These deposits can block blood flow and cause heart attacks or strokes.

HDL, or good, cholesterol helps remove cholesterol from the body through the liver. High levels of HDL cholesterol can reduce the risk of heart problems and strokes.

Increase Your Physical Activity

Physical activity increases levels of HDL cholesterol the good cholesterol that removes LDL cholesterol from the blood. Vigorous aerobic exercise is best.

If you havent been exercising much lately, gradually build up to the recommended amount of physical activity:

  • People aged 18-64 years should do 30 to 60 minutes of moderate-intensity physical activity on most days of the week.
  • People aged 65 years and over should aim for a total of 30 minutes of moderate physical activity on most days .

Moderate-intensity exercise is a level that increases your heart rate and breathing but allows you to keep talking. Vigorous intensity exercise makes your heart rate higher and makes you breathe more heavily.

Resistance training and muscle-toning exercises can increase HDL cholesterol. Aim to do this twice a week.

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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.

Get At Least 150 Minutes Of Exercise Every Week

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Exercise can help increase your levels of HDL cholesterol which helps to remove LDL cholesterol from the blood. If you add exercise it may also help you to lose weight.

Aim for 30 minutes of physical activity 5 days per week at a moderate pace where you can talk but not sing. Choose activities that you will enjoy such as a brisk walk, biking, swimming, or running.

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Why Exercise Is Effective At Lowering Cholesterol

Cholesterol is one of the fatty substances we have circulating in our blood. If we have too much, it can stick to the inside walls of our arteries, narrowing them and increasing risk of cardiovascular disease.

Its not only the amount of cholesterol in the blood that affects our risk, though. Other factors play a part. One of these is the type of protein that carries the cholesterol through the body. Low-density lipoprotein cholesterol is more likely to cause problems. High-density lipoprotein cholesterol protects the body from cholesterol buildup.

Exercise helps increase levels of HDL good cholesterol. Researchers reported on this in Arteriosclerosis, Thrombosis, and Vascular Biology found similar results. In men with belly fat, regular endurance exercise increased HDL good cholesterol levels.

Exercise may even change the nature of our cholesterol. In 2002, researchers from Duke University Medical Center found that exercise improved the number and size of the particles carrying cholesterol through the body. Those who exercised more had larger, fluffier particles that were less likely to clog arteries.

Exercise can help you lower cholesterol numbers even if youre overweight. In the Journal of Obesity, researchers reported that overweight and obese adults who walked, jogged, and cycled while eating a cholesterol-lowering diet improved total cholesterol, LDL cholesterol, and triglyceride levels.

Alcohol And Ldl Levels

Although moderate consumption of alcohol can significantly raise HDL levels, it can also lower LDL, according to studies. Moderate consumption means one serving a day for women and one to two servings per day for men.

However, drinking more alcohol doesnt necessarily equal better results in terms of improving your heart health. Studies have also indicated that drinking more than three alcoholic drinks a day could actually increase your chances of heart disease.

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Enjoy Lots Of Fruits And Vegetables

Eating fruits and vegetables is an easy way to lower LDL cholesterol levels.

Studies show that adults who consume at least four servings of fruits and vegetables each day have roughly 6% lower LDL cholesterol levels than people who eat fewer than two servings per day .

Fruits and vegetables also contain high numbers of antioxidants, which prevent LDL cholesterol from oxidizing and forming plaques in your arteries .

Together, these cholesterol-lowering and antioxidant effects can reduce your risk of heart disease.

Research has found that people who eat the most fruits and vegetables have a 17% lower risk of developing heart disease over 10 years compared to those who eat the fewest .

Summary Eating at least four servings of fruits and vegetables daily can lower LDL cholesterol levels and reduce LDL oxidation, which may reduce your risk of heart disease.

How Do I Know If I Have High Cholesterol

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Many Australians don’t know they have high cholesterol, because there are no symptoms. High cholesterol can only be detected through a blood test.

Some people have a condition called familial hypercholesterolaemia where a genetic problem leads to high cholesterol. About one in 500 Australians has this condition and many dont know they have it. If you have a family history of high cholesterol or of heart disease at a young age, ask your doctor about your risk.

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Medicines To Lower Cholesterol

For some people, making lifestyle changes alone does not their lower cholesterol enough. They may also need to take medicines. There are several types of cholesterol-lowering drugs available. They work in different ways and can have different side effects. Talk to your health care provider about which medicine is right for you.

Even if you take medicines to lower your cholesterol, you still need to continue with lifestyle changes.

Best Exercises For Lowering Cholesterol

Some research has indicated that it may be that how much you exercise is more important than what kind of exercise you do. That means its worth it to incorporate more activity into your day however you can. Take a walk during your lunch hour, choose the stairs, stand up to take phone calls, or store a jump rope at your desk.

In addition, try to incorporate at least 30 minutes of structured exercise into each day. Any exercise is better than none, but the following six types have shown in studies to be effective at reducing cholesterol levels.

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Eat More Oats And Other Soluble Fiber

Soluble fiber acts like a sponge, absorbing water and turning into a gel during digestion. It is also great at binding to cholesterol and removing it from the body, lowering overall cholesterol levels and ultimately the risk of heart disease.

Soluble fiber is found in a number of different foods such as:

  • Apples
  • Stone and berry fruits
  • Sunflower seeds.

To reduce LDL and total cholesterol levels, experts recommend eating at least 25 to 30 grams of fiber per day, with about one-quarter of that coming from soluble fiber sources. Three-quarters of a cup of cooked beans provide around 5 grams of soluble fiber, half an avocado contains 2 grams of soluble fiber, and one cup of cooked carrots around 2.5 grams. Eat up!

Puree Fruits And Veggies For Baking

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Pureed fruits or vegetables can be used in place of oil in muffin, cookie, cake and snack bar recipes to give your treats an extra healthy boost. For many recipes, use the specified amount of puree instead of oil. Check the mixs package or your cookbooks substitutions page for other conversions. You can:

  • Use applesauce in spice muffins or oatmeal cookies.
  • Include bananas in breads and muffins.
  • Try zucchini in brownies.

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Add Plant Stanols Or Sterols

Include 2 grams of plant stanols or sterols per day. This may help lower your LDL cholesterol. Stanols and sterols are found in fortified foods or supplements. To add these in your diet you can:

  • Add foods fortified with stanols and sterols. Ask your dietitian for more information.

  • Include daily supplements such as Cardio Sterols or Cholestoff capsules and Benecol chews.

Use Liquid Vegetable Oils In Place Of Solid Fats

Liquid vegetable oils such as canola, safflower, sunflower, soybean and olive oil can often be used instead of solid fats, such as butter, lard or shortening. If you must use margarine, try the soft or liquid kind.

Use a little liquid oil to:

  • Pan-fry fish and poultry.
  • Make cream sauces and soups using low-fat or fat-free milk.
  • Add to whipped or scalloped potatoes using low-fat or fat-free milk.
  • Brown rice for Spanish, curried or stir-fried rice.
  • Cook dehydrated potatoes and other prepared foods that call for fat to be added.
  • Make pancakes or waffles.

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