Eat smart and see your cholesterol levels fall into a healthier zone. These food groups will help you fight the good fight.
1. Fill up on fibre
This important food component is a great help when it comes to lowering cholesterol. Some fibres are better than others such as water-soluble options like oat bran, psyllium seeds, guar gum or pectin.
These form a gel which binds bile and cholesterol in the gut to allow for excretion as part of your bowel motions. Fibre has also been found to decrease the bad (LDL) cholesterol and improve your levels of good (HDL) cholesterol.
2. Go garlic!
Garlic may have a mild cholesterol-lowering effect. Include garlic in your diet wherever possible. Raw, chopped or crushed garlic can be taken daily on a spoon. It can help to mix it with honey or swallow it with water to help take the edge off.
3. Clever vegies
Vegetarian diets have been found to be effective in lowering cholesterol. Consider going vego as a short-term plan , say, for three to six months when you need to be intensive about lowering cholesterol levels.
Increasing the amount of fresh vegetables you consume will support your general health by supplying the body with a range of important vitamins, minerals and antioxidants. Remember to firstly get advice or do some research on how to eat a balanced vegetarian diet.
The sugar wars
Few people realise that eating sugar promotes the production of cholesterol in the body. Sugar intake is out of control in the average person's diet to the point that many people are no longer able to identify more subtle degrees of sweetness. Sugar is also addictive.
If you eliminate sugar from your diet for a while, you'll find that simple foods such as carrots and grains actually taste sweet. If you then introduce highly sweet foods or drinks such as soft drink back into your diet, you may find you can no longer stand how sweet they are.