When it comes to controlling high cholesterol, you must be very careful about what you should eat. Following a proper diet plan is very important. There are several food products that have the natural ability to keep your cholesterol level balanced. You must include those foods in your meals. Following are some of the most useful diet tips to control high cholesterol.
Top Foods To Control High Cholesterol
Use Olive Oil In Your Foods
Olive oil is a great source for some of the best antioxidants that can reduce your bad cholesterol level quite efficiently. Just two tbsp. of olive oil every day is enough. Since it is very high in calories, you are strongly recommended not to eat it more than needed.There can be an array of ways to include olive oil in your diet. For example, you can use it as a substitute for butter. Mixing it with vinegar in your salad is also a good idea. For the best results, you should prefer olive oil that is less processed, usually known as extra-virgin olive oil. It is lighter in color as compared to more processed oil.
Eat A Handful Of Nuts Daily
Almonds and walnuts contain lots of polyunsaturated fatty acids that are known to be very effective in reducing high cholesterol level. Including these food products in your diet plan will keep your blood vessels in good health. Besides walnuts and almonds, you can also consider eating pistachio nuts, pine nuts, pecans, peanuts and hazelnuts.
However, you should avoid eating them if they are coated with sugar or salted. Eat them plain. Just a handful (around forty to forty-five grams) is enough because all types of nuts provide high amount of calories. A good idea is to use a handful of almonds or walnuts instead of croutons, meat or cheese in your salad.
Eat Foods Rich In Omega-3 Fatty Acids
The risk of high cholesterol levels can be reduced to a great extent by eating foods that contain high quantity of omega-3 fatty acids. Fatty fish is an excellent source for it. You are advised to eat at least 2-3 servings of fish every week.However, in order to avoid adding unhealthy fats, it is always better to get your fish grilled or baked. Some of the best sources for omega-3 fatty acids include halibut, salmon, albacore tuna, sardines, herring, lake trout, mackerel, canola oil and ground flaxseed.
Include Oatmeal And Other Fiber-Rich Foods In Your Meals
Foods rich in fiber can reduce bad cholesterol level quite effectively. Oat bran and oatmeal are two of the best sources of soluble fiber. You can also consider including other fiber-rich foods in your diet, such as prunes, barley, pears, apples and kidney beans.Your body can get six grams of fiber through two cups of cooked oatmeal. Likewise, eating a couple of bananas can provide you four to five grams of fiber. In order to keep the cholesterol level in balance, your body must get around 5-10 grams of soluble fiber every day. So, plan your diet accordingly.
Add Garlic Liberally In Your Foods
When it comes to reducing high cholesterol level, adding garlic in your foods can also prove to be very beneficial. Foods prepared with high garlic content are referred to as Mediterranean diet.Medical studies have confirmed the tremendous heart healthy benefits of this type of diet. So, it is always wise to add garlic in liberal quantity in fresh salads or in cooking.
Eat Plenty Of Vegetables And Fruits
Though all types of fresh vegetables and fruits are beneficial in reducing bad cholesterol, the ones that contain high amount of beta-carotene and the ones that are rich in vitamin C are particularly more useful. You should consider getting at least five servings of such vegetables and fruits every day to keep your cholesterol level under control. All dark vegetables, such as spinach, cabbage and broccoli are highly rich in beta carotene.
Other vegetable sources for it include carrots, butternut, sweet potatoes and pumpkin. In terms of fruits, you should focus on the ones that are dark yellow in color, such as mango, yellow peaches and apricots. Vegetables that are rich in vitamin C include all the members from the cabbage family, such as sprouts, Brussels, broccoli and green cabbage. You can get vitamin C from fruits like lemons, grapefruits, oranges and other citrus fruits.
Consume Fat-Free Dairy Products And Fat-Free Yoghurt
If you are suffering from high cholesterol, you must avoid full cream dairy products at all costs. However, there is no need to completely eliminate this food group. It is very important for you to understand that dairy products provide you a good amount of heart-healthy calcium.Instead of cutting this food group completely, you are advised to use cottage cheese, and fat-free yoghurt and milk products. You must eat a decent quantity of fat-free yoghurt in particular, because it does not contain just calcium and protein but also Lactobacilus micro-organisms which can be very beneficial in lowering your bad cholesterol level.
Eat Legumes Everyday
Legumes do not contain any cholesterol, as they are naturally very low in fat. They are a rich source for dietary fiber and also contain a good amount of phytonutrients, Vitamin B and other essential minerals. In short, legumes make an essential addition in your diet plan when it comes to lowering bad cholesterol and protecting your heart.Doctors often recommend high-cholesterol patients to eat soya, lentils, peas and dry beans regularly. All types of soya products are beneficial in controlling high cholesterol, such as tempeh, tofu, cubes, soya mince and canned or cooked soya beans.
Get Foods Fortified With Stanols And Sterols
Stanols and sterols are natural substances that can be very useful in blocking the absorption of bad cholesterol in your blood stream without causing any adverse effects on good cholesterol.Therefore, you are advised to get yoghurt drinks, orange juices and margarines with added plant sterols. Drinking eight ounce of sterol-fortified orange juice daily can reduce your bad cholesterol level by up to ten percent. While you are following the above diet tips for high cholesterol level, you must also avoid those foods that are rich in trans and saturated fats.