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Foods that Lower Cholesterol

17-09-2017 01:00 PM | Lathika Saju | My Indian Dream

Foods that Lower Cholesterol | My Indian Dream

Incorporating certain foods in our diet helps to lower cholesterol naturally

Nowadays, increasing number of youngsters are found to have high cholesterol level. It is easy to eat your way into an alarmingly high cholesterol level. At the same time, incorporating certain changes in your diet will help you to lower cholesterol.

This requires you to follow two steps – Remember that  LDL is the harmful cholesterol which carries particles that clog arteries. Therefore, increase intake of food that lower LDL. At the same time cut back on foods that boost LDL.

Here are some foods that will help to lower LDL or bad cholesterol-

Certain food help to lower cholesterol in different ways. Some contain soluble fibre which binds with cholesterol in the digestive system and takes them out of the body before they could enter into circulation. Some carry polyunsaturated fats that directly lower LDL while some include plant sterols and stanols, which do not allow the body to absorb cholesterol.

1. Oats. Oats contain adequate amounts of soluble fibre. Have a bowl of oats daily for breakfast improves your cholesterol. Fruits like banana or strawberries can be added to enhance the flavour and nutrition factor. If you don’t like it sweet then it can also be made into upma. Add a few vegetables like carrot, beans and peas for a wholesome breakfast.

2. Barley and other whole grains. Just like oats, barley and other whole grains can help lower the risk of heart disease. Whole grains such as whole wheat, barley, corn, brown rice, millet and quinoa are excellent sources of dietary fibre which help to improve blood cholesterol levels and lower risk of heart disease, stroke, obesity and type 2 diabetes.

3. Beans. Beans are a very versatile food. From kidney beans (rajma), whole green grams (moong) to lentils and black eyed peas, there exist a variety of beans and innumerable ways to cook them. As they are rich in soluble fibre , they help to lower LDL cholesterol. It also works to the advantage of folks who want to lose weight as beans take time for the body to digest which will keep you full for longer after a meal.

4. High fibre vegetables. Fibre in our diet is mostly plant based, so include vegetables like peas, spinach and potatoes in your diet. Egglant and okhra are good sources of soluble fibre which helps to lower LDL cholesterol.

 5. Nuts. Studies reveal that eating almonds, walnuts, peanuts, and other nuts is good for the heart. Apart from the rich  nutrients that it imparts to protect the heart, eating two ounces of nuts also lowers LDL.

6. Vegetable oils. Use oils that contain monounsaturated fats as they  raise HDL (good cholesterol) and lower LDL.  Use liquid vegetable oils such as canola, sunflower, safflower, peanut oil  and olive oil for a healthy heart.

7. Fruits .  As mentioned earlier, most of the fibre that we derive from food is plant based. So eat a fruit daily for a healthy heart and body. Fruits such as apples, grapes, strawberries and citrus fruits  are rich in pectin, a type of soluble fiber that lowers LDL.

8. Foods fortified with sterols and stanols. Sterols and stanols are extracted from plants and hinders the body's ability to absorb cholesterol from food. They are addded in foods ranging from margarine and granola bars to orange juice and chocolate. They're also available as supplements. Getting 2 grams of plant sterols or stanols a day can lower LDL cholesterol by about 10%.

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