Cholesterol is necessary for the efficient and effective functioning of cell membranes. This waxy, fat-like substance also plays an important role in the insulation of nerves and the production of certain hormones essential to the proper functioning of the human body. However excessive cholesterol can adversely impact a person’s health.
Bad cholesterol can lead to a number of diseases including those concerning the heart and arteries. A person who has a high level of bad cholesterol stored in his body is more susceptible to heart attack and stroke.
This is why it is essential to know what types of food contain bad cholesterol in order to prevent unhealthy buildup. It is also important to know what food can lower one’s level of cholesterol. So if you’re searching for a healthy way to get rid of excess cholesterol, here are nine foods that can help you fight cholesterol naturally.
Bran especially oat bran and other types of cereal-based foods can improve levels of cholesterol. Eating bran every morning and including it on your daily diet is beneficial and will likely reduce your level of cholesterol by roughly 7-14 percent.
Almonds, walnuts and pistachios
Different types of nuts including almonds, walnuts and pistachios will surely help you become healthier in the long-run. Nuts do not only reduce your cholesterol level but also provides a lot of other health benefits. A serving of almond nuts can reduce cholesterol level by 5-10 percent while walnuts and pistachios can reduce it by approximately 10 percent.
Green tea has long been known as anti-cholesterol especially in the far east and parts of Asia. According to various studies, green tea is a good alternative to water and fruit juices especially after every meal.
Dark chocolate can similarly reduce cholesterol level by 2-5 percent. Needless to say, compared to other types of chocolate, dark chocolate is undoubtedly much healthier and is better for one’s heart.
Soy does not only help in lowering cholesterol. It is also packed with a number of vitamins and nutrients that can improve a person’s overall health. Products include tofu a popular meat alternative. Soy products help you cut down on meat and fat intake reducing your levels of cholesterol naturally.
Green vegetables such as spinach and beans can do wonders for your health. According to prevention.com, a daily intake of beans for a span of six weeks can lower cholesterol level by as much as 10 percent. On the other hand, spinach can decrease the level of cholesterol in a very similar manner.
Apples, grapes and other citrus fruits
Fruits like apples, grapes and citrus fruits such as oranges and mangoes are also ideal when you’re opting for a low cholesterol diet. As the saying goes, an apple a day keeps the doctor away. Moreover, the same is true with almost every type of fresh fruit.
A half clove of garlic can lower cholesterol by as much as 12 percent. What makes garlic a good anti-cholesterol food is that it can be served fried (stand-alone) or as part of regular meals.
Fish and omega-3 rich foods
Fish and omega 3-rich foods can significantly reduce cholesterol level. It is recommended that two servings of fish per week be included in one’s diet. Fishes like mackerels, salmons and sardines are great as starters.
Pushing for a low cholesterol diet can be difficult. It requires both a great deal of discipline and effort. Nevertheless, a low cholesterol diet can help you in more ways than you can imagine. Prevention is always the best option but if you’re already suffering from above normal cholesterol levels just follow these tips for a healthier body.