(RxWiki News) There are some things about our health that we can't control, but if you take control of your diet, you can control more health factors than you might think — including your cholesterol.
High cholesterol is linked with a higher risk of cardiovascular disease, but by eating the healthy foods listed below, you may be able to reduce the levels of unhealthy cholesterol in your blood.
Food is not a replacement for medications used to treat high cholesterol, however, so reach out to your health care provider if you are worried about your cholesterol levels.
In the meantime, give some of these foods that may reduce cholesterol a try.
Oats, as well as various other types of grains and cereals, are high in fiber. And fiber has been tied to reduced levels of LDL ("bad") cholesterol in the blood.
Oatmeal is a popular way to consume oats, but you can also incorporate oats into baked goods like bread and cookies to make them pack a healthier punch.
While you're making that lovely bowl of cholesterol-lowering oatmeal, you can increase your benefits and add a delicious flavor by tossing in some berries.
Blueberries, blackberries, strawberries, raspberries and other berries are relatively low in sugar but come with a lot of soluble fiber. As an added bonus, they're also packed with antioxidants, which have been tied to reduced cancer and heart disease risks.
Fatty fish like tuna, herring, mackerel and salmon contain a lot of omega-3 fatty acids. Omega-3s have been tied to a host of potential health benefits, but the key benefit if you're looking for foods that lower cholesterol is that these fatty acids may reduce LDL cholesterol levels.
Instead of eating red meat like pork and beef, which can increase cholesterol levels, try protein-packed fish at your next meal.
4. Green Vegetables
Most vegetables are great candidates if you're looking for foods that can lower cholesterol, but green vegetables like spinach, kale, Brussels sprouts, asparagus and broccoli come with a particularly healthy nutrient profile. That's in addition to being high in fiber, low in fat and calories and great for your health in general.
5. Seeds and Nuts
Nuts and seeds, including almonds, walnuts, hazelnuts, flax seeds and pumpkin seeds, are full of protein and healthy fats that can increase your levels of HDL ("good") cholesterol and reduce levels of LDL cholesterol.
You can increase the overall benefit of adding nuts and seeds to your diet by using them to replace unhealthy and cholesterol-increasing snacks like potato chips.
Talk to your doctor before making any major changes to your diet.