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Foods that lower bad cholesterol levels

New figures are suggesting that a large proportion of the population is clinically obese.
New figures are suggesting that a large proportion of the population is clinically obese.
Photo by Jeff J Mitchell/Getty Images

Sadly, many people in developed countries are obese or overweight and suffer with a myriad of diseases that shorten their lives. Fortunately, some diseases are preventable.

Maintaining healthy and good cholesterol levels in our bloodstream is vital to good health. Reducing our LDL cholesterol level is one way to prevent the risk of life-threatening diseases. LDL cholesterol is considered bad cholesterol because it causes plaque buildup in arteries, which leads to stroke, heart attacks, and heart disease.

Research shows that healthy foods are essential in attempting to add years to our lives. However, foods that lower bad cholesterol levels do not have to taste bland and without flavor. Favorable foods can easily be included into everyday meals and enrich our lives, while reducing bad cholesterol levels.

Foods that lower bad cholesterol levels

Kidney and black beans, as well as lentils are a rich source of soluble fiber. Research shows that eating 4.5 ounces of beans each day can decrease LDL cholesterol levels by five percent. Soluble fiber attaches to cholesterol in the blood and helps in moving it out of our bodies.

Fish, especially albacore tuna, halibut, sardines, and salmon have an abundant amount of omega-3 fatty acids. Omega-3 fatty acids help in reducing triglycerides in the blood. It’s recommended to eat eight ounces of grilled or baked fish per week. Research suggests that eating fried fish increases the risk of heart disease, so avoid fried fish in order to stay healthy.

Nuts, like pistachios, walnuts, and almonds are enriched with polyunsaturated fats that contribute to lowering LDL cholesterol. Nuts are also high in calories, so it’s important not to consume too many. About 1.5 ounces each day should suffice. About one-third cup of almonds or about 30 almonds is enough for one day’s consumption, as well.

Green and black tea contain antioxidants that help in lowing cholesterol levels. Of the two types of tea, green tea is comprised of unfermented leaves and processed less. It also has more antioxidants.

Avocados are part of the family of foods that lower bad cholesterol levels in the bloodstream with oleic acids. Using avocado oil for cooking is another alternative in place of other oils. Other than making guacamole with avocados, this tasty fruit is great when sliced and added to salads or turkey sandwiches.

More foods that reduce bad cholesterol levels

Eating dark chocolate in moderation helps lower cholesterol levels. Chocolate is high in sugar and saturated fat; nevertheless, it has antioxidants and flavonoids that help in reducing cholesterol. Cooking with dark, unsweetened cocoa powder is beneficial to our health in many ways.

Many fruits help in reducing cholesterol levels. For instance, citrus fruits like lemons and oranges have pectin, which is an essential type of fiber that is capable of lowering cholesterol. Apples, pears, and berries contain pectin and are a rich source of fiber.

Choose any vegetable and you cannot go wrong in lowering cholesterol levels. Okra and eggplants have increased amounts of soluble fiber. In addition, eggplants have a high amount of antioxidants. Vegetables rich in nutrients and fiber are great additions to a healthy diet.

Olive oil is a better alternative to other cooking oils and for lowering LDL cholesterol levels. Use it with minced garlic, ground black pepper, and red wine vinegar for salad dressing. There are a number of health benefits of olive oil, including reducing inflammation, it lowers triglycerides and LDL cholesterol; it is rich in vitamin E and antioxidants, reduces blood pressure, and lessens the risk of type-2 diabetes.

For many people, lifestyle changes are necessary in order to live a healthier life. A proper diet of foods that lower bad cholesterol levels is essential for good health. Exercising is also vital in preventing disease and sustaining a healthy weight. If you smoke, quit!

Eat well, exercise, live longer, and enjoy your life!

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