Foods That Lower Cholesterol
The bad guy
Cholesterol has long been considered the bad actor in the food supply. More people are taking statin drugs to lower cholesterol than ever before. Are there other ways that you can help to lower your cholesterol levels on your own?
You need cholesterol to live
You may not know that cholesterol is actually a part of every cell in your body and you need it to survive. Unfortunately, due to genetic predisposition, lifestyle and diet, cholesterol can become a problem for your blood vessels and heart.
It's the saturated fat
It is important to remember that the dietary factor most affecting your cholesterol level is the amount of saturated fat in the foods you eat and not the amount of cholesterol in your food. A number of studies have shown that dietary cholesterol does not greatly affect blood cholesterol. However, dietary saturated fats may cause elevated levels of cholesterol in the blood.
By the numbers
It is generally believed that the ideal level of total blood cholesterol is less than 200 mg/dl. In addition, the HDL (Happy cholesterol) should be over 50 and the LDL (Lousy cholesterol) should be less than 100 mg/dl. Keep in mind that these are general guidelines, and you should discuss your particular cholesterol values with your health care provider.
Here is a list that seem to help when consumed on a regular basis.
Whole grains, especially oatmeal
Nuts, especially Walnuts, Almonds, Pistachios
Take up an active hobby!
In addition to limiting saturated fats and eating more of the cholesterol lowering foods listed here, regular exercise has been shown to help keep your cholesterol at safe levels.
Note: People often confuse the cholesterol found in food with the cholesterol found in blood that produces that overall number, and the good cholesterol (HDL)/bad cholesterol (LDL)ratio. These good and bad cholesterols are not what appears in food, but rather refer to lipoproteins that circulate in the blood as fat transporters.
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