DIET AND FITNESS:

Foods That Lower Cholesterol

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January 22, 2008, last updated June 11, 2016
By Susan M. Callahan, Associate Editor
and Featured Columnist

[Health and fitness articles are reviewed by our team of Doctors and
Registered Nurses, Certified fitness professionals and other members
of our Editorial Board]


There are many lists of cholesterol-lowering foods. Here , we
only include those foods which have been shown by
reputable studies to have compounds which lower LDL,
"bad" cholesterol or which raise HDL, so -called "good"
cholesterol.

Recommendations for your cholesterol levels are

Total Cholesterol- under 200

LDL -under 100

HDL-at least 40-60

Triglycerides -under 150.

There is a
third type of cholesterol, called vLDL but it is
reduced by the same foods which reduce the two main types
of cholesterol.

With that said, here are the only foods which research have
shown to have any positive effect on cholesterol.































1.
Oats and oat bran.

Update:

Since the 1960’s, scientists have been confirming the strong
link between eating oats and lowering your cholesterol. The
first important study was conducted in 1963 by Dr. A.P.
DeGroot and his team from the Central Institute for Nutrition
and Food Research T.N.O in The Netherlands who noticed
that, among all other grains tested, oats had the remarkable
ability to lower total cholesterol in lab animals by 11%.  

That early discovery has been confirmed and expanded upon
over the past 50 years by researchers in universities all over
the world.  For example, a  2012 study from the University of
Wollongong in Australia found that eating oats in either the
form of oat porridge or ready-to-eat oak flakes for just 6
weeks lowered total cholesterol by 7.2% to 7.8%.

After reviewing 37 then-existing studies on the effect of
eating oats on cholesterol, in 1997 the US Food and Drug
Administration approved the marketing of oats to lower
cholesterol.

The exact approved language is “a diet high in soluble fiber
from whole oats (oat bran, oatmeal and oat flour) and low in
saturated fat and cholesterol may reduce the risk of heart
disease”. The FDA concluded that you would need to eat at
least 3 grams of the soluble fiber in oats called “β-glucan” to
achieve a significant reduction in your total cholesterol level.  
To eat the minimum 3 grams of this soluble fiber, you’ll need
to eat about 40 grams of oat bran (about 1/3 of a cup) or
60 grams ( about a half of a cup) of oatmeal a day.  


2.
Walnuts, almonds, pistachios. Eating nuts has been linked
with lowering the risk of heart disease.  Walnuts, in
particular, have what scientists have called a "unique profile"
of polyunsaturated fat that is particularly good at lowering
your cholesterol level and your risk for experiencing heart
disease.

In a 2010 study led by Dr of Harvard School of Public Health,
365 participants were fed diets in which walnuts made up 10
to 24% of the total calories. After staying on this diet for 4
to 24 weeks, the participants saw their total cholesterol and
LDL "bad" cholesterol drop an average of 10.2 points.

Pistachios are also particularly good at lowering cholesterol.
Several studies, including one led by Dr. Sheila J. West of
Pennsylvania State University, showed that eating 2 servings
of pistachios a day can lower cholesterol by 9% to 12%.  


3.
Omega-3s (fish, flaxseed, walnuts, canola)

4. Fish and fish oil. Try to eat fish 2 to 3 times a week to
maintain healthy cholesterol levels. As a 2013 study led by
researchers from the University of Connecticut has
discovered, a Mediterranean diet that features fish,
vegetables and fruit reduces the oxidation of LDL(bad)
cholesterol. Other studies have found that it is this oxidation
which causes cholesterol to stick to the walls of your arteries
and increases your risk for stroke and heart disease.

However, you have to eat your fish grilled not fried. Frying
fish oxidizes the fat and increases --- not decreases--- your
risk for stroke.

5. Plant sterols and stanols found in fortified orange juice
and imitation butter or margarine spreads.

Other sources have partial research results which support
that the following foods reduce cholesterol:
eggplants;
tomatoes; and zucchinis.

6. Blueberries

7. Olive oil and olives

8. Cranberry Juice

9. Black soy beans. Here the research has gone both ways.
The Mayo Clinic states that soy has not been shown to have
any beneficial effect on cholesterol though it may have other
health benefits

10. Pomegranate juice. No evidence from hard research,
though this juice may have other health benefits such as
lowering levels of internal
inflammation.


11. Garlic. Same results are with soy.
Garlic has been shown
to be heart-healthy because it (and onions) have been
shown to reduce internal arterial inflammation but no
definitive study has shown it also lowers cholesterol.

12.
Amaranth. This ancient grain favored by the Aztecs has
been found in recent research to be as
effective as oatmeal
in lowering cholesterol.

13. Spirulina. This blue-green algae found in lakes and used
by astronauts on NASA space flights has been found to
lower total cholestrol by as much as 22%.

14. Red Yeast Rice.
Red yeast rice lowers cholesterol as
effectively as statin drugs, according to new reports. Some
stuides have seen cholesterol levels drop as much as 42%.
But be careful --using
red yeast rice to lower your
cholesterol can produce certain adverse side effects.  

15. Coffee. That daily cup of coffee may help you to lower
your cholesterol. A new 2010 study from Norway has found
that
coffee helps to lower LDL (bad) cholesterol.

16.
Avocadoes. Several studies have found that adding
avocado to your diet as a substitute for saturated fat helps
to dramatically reduce your total cholesterol, lower your LDL
and increase your HDL.

For example, a 1997 study from Centro Médico La Raza,
Instituto Mexicano del Seguro Social found that adding 49
grams of avocado fat to a daily diet not exceeding 200
calories lowered the total cholesterol of those who had mild
cholesterol problems by 17%. Moreover, the change
occurred in just 7 days.  In addition to lowering total
cholesterol by 17%, the levels of LDL dropped by 22%,
triglycerides dropped by 22% and HDL ("good" cholesterol)
increased  by 11%. ( Read more about the
health benefits of
avocados.)

17. Beans. Most beans have been found effective in lowering
cholesterol.
Read more.

18. Pineapple Compound. A compound in pineapples called
bromelain disrupts cholesterol plaques in your arteries,
scientists have discovered.  
Read more.







































Related
:
High Cholesterol -Causes and Top 10 Remedies

Foods That Raise HDL

VLDL-The Other Cholesterol

Foods That Shrink Your Waist

Foods That Reduce Blood Pressure


Amaranth-The Ancient Grain That Lowers Cholesterol

Red Yeast Rice Lowers Cholesterol -Comprehensive Review

Fasting Can Change Your Entire Health Profile

Coffee Helps You Lose Weight

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