Cholesterol Foods: 6 Superfoods You Can Have Every Day For Lowering Your Cholesterol Levels
Cholesterol-lowering foods: Cholesterol levels need to maintained in order to prevent risk of heart disease and stroke. Superfoods like garlic, spinach, oats and walnuts amongst others can help in reducing cholesterol.
Cholesterol levels need to be regulated in order to avoid risks of heart disease
- Protein rich soybeans can help in controlling cholesterol
- Take less stress to avoid high cholesterol
- Quit smoking and alcohol to control cholesterol
Managing your cholesterol is an important step towards having a healthy heart. Low density lipoprotein (LDL) and high density lipoprotein (HDL) are the two kinds of cholesterol. In layman's terms LDL cholesterol is considered to be bad cholesterol and HDL cholesterol is considered to be good cholesterol. 200 mg/dL is considered to be healthy cholesterol level in adults. 200-239 mg/dL is considered to be high on borderline, and 240 mg/dL and above is considered high cholesterol and steps must be taken to control. In this article, we are going to talk about cholesterol-lowering foods that must be a part of your diet.
Why is high cholesterol bad for you?
High levels of cholesterol can put at risk of chest pain, heart attack and stroke. A healthy diet and regular exercise can help in controlling cholesterol. You also need to quit smoking, cut down on alcohol consumption and maintain a healthy weight in order to avoid risks associated with high cholesterol.
High cholesterol: 6 superfoods that can help in controlling cholesterol
The earlier you start living a healthy lifestyle, the better it is for your cholesterol, blood pressure and heart rate. Also, the following foods can help in keeping cholesterol under control
Garlic can rightly be called a superfood. It is a powerful kitchen ingredient which has been found to be effective in controlling both cholesterol and high blood pressure. According to nutritionist Nmami Agarwal, garlic has properties that can prevent blood clots. You can eat 2 to 3 cloves of raw, crushed garlic cloves in order to maintain healthy cholesterol levels.
2. Soy beans
Apart from being a great source of plant-based proteins, soy beans are also great for reducing cholesterol levels. It is rich in fibre, healthy fats, vitamins and minerals. According to studies, you can eat 25 gms of soy beans in a day to lower your LDL cholesterol by 5 to 6%.
Spinach is a leafy green vegetable which offers a myriad of health benefits. It also contains lutein, an antioxidant that can reduce LDL cholesterol in bloodstream. Lutein can also prevent fat deposits in arteries. Soluble and insoluble fibre in spinach can be good for boosting your digestion. Spinach is also a rich source of calcium and magnesium.
Omega-3 rich fatty acids rich walnuts can be great for your heart health. What's more is that nuts like walnuts, almonds, Brazil nuts, cashews and pistachios make for a great on-the-go snacking option. They are rich in protein and can also be included in weight loss diet. Monounsaturated fats and soluble fibre in walnuts can lower LDL cholesterol as well.
Pectin, a naturally occurring soluble fibre in apples, has the capability of binding excess cholesterol and stopping its absorption in the body. Vitamins, minerals, polyphenols and fibre in apples make them good for digestion and most other bodily functions.
Rich in fibre, oats are great for reducing and preventing constipation. But did you know that having oats regularly can regularise your cholesterol levels as well? Beta-glucan, a soluble fibre in oats, can help in reducing cholesterol in the body.
Lifestyle changes to manage cholesterol
- Apart from having these foods, you can lower your cholesterol levels by taking less stress. Excessive stress can trigger cholesterol and blood pressure and cause various complications in the body.
- Quit smoking and alcohol.
- Make sure you exercise for a minimum of 30 days on most days of the week.
- If you are overweight, reduce your weight and try to maintain a healthy weight.
- Reduce consumption of junk food, processed food and packaged food-they are actually the main culprits behind high cholesterol levels.
(Nmami Agarwal is nutritionist at Nmami Life)
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