Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Top foods to lower your Cholesterol

Diet can play an important role in lowering your cholesterol. Discover these foods that can lower your cholesterol and protect your heart.

Whole Grains/Oatmeal and oat bran: Oatmeal contains soluble fiber, which reduces your LDL or "bad" cholesterol. Soluble fiber is also found in such foods as kidney beans, apples, pears, barley and prunes. If you add fruit, such as bananas to oatmeal you'll add about 4 more grams of fiber.

Pistachios, Walnuts, almonds and more:A Penn State study showed that eating pistachios significantly lowers LDL (bad) cholesterol levels and reduces the risk of heart disease. Omega-3 fats and antioxidants in nuts work to reverse the arterial damage caused by saturated fats.

Fish and omega-3 fatty acids: Research has supported the cholesterol-lowering benefits of eating fatty fish because of its high levels of omega-3 fatty acids. Omega-3 fatty acids also help the heart in other ways such as reducing blood pressure and the risk of blood clots. The highest levels of omega-3 fatty acids are in mackerel, lake trout, herring, sardines, albacore tuna and salmon. However, to maintain the heart-healthy benefits of fish, bake or grill it. If you don't like fish, you can also get omega-3 fatty acids from foods like ground flaxseed or canola oil.

Olive oil: To add olive oil to your diet, you can saute vegetables in it, add it to a marinade, or mix it with vinegar as a salad dressing. You can also use olive oil as a substitute for butter when basting meat.

Blueberries: A compound in blueberries may help lower cholesterol as effectively as commercial drugs with fewer side effects.

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