Elevated low density lipoprotein (LDL), otherwise known as bad cholesterol, is often a problem, especially for those in their 40s and older. However, there are also individuals in their 20s and 30s that suffer from high cholesterol.
Once bad cholesterol gets oxidized, plaque builds up in your arteries in the long run. It clogs the arteries, inflames the arterial tissues, hardens the arteries and causes blood pressure to rise. Eventually, these occurrences can lead to cardiovascular disease.
Good thing though, hypercholesterolemia can be easily remedied with a change in diet and of course, exercise. However, this article will focus on healthy foods that can help lower bad cholesterol levels. The following foods contain anti-oxidants, fiber and healthy fats. Here goes:
1. Green tea
You have probably heard how great green tea is because of its many health benefits. Lowering bad cholesterol is one of them. Green tea, particularly Matcha, is rich in catechins, a type of phenol and anti-oxidant. It helps prevent absorption of cholesterol as well as minimize blockage in the arteries.
2. Chia seeds
Chia seed is a popular superfood because a small amount can do wonders to your cardiovascular health. Consuming two ounces of Chia seeds can help lower LDL, regulate blood pressure, increase HDL (good cholesterol) and lower triglycerides.
Avocado is one of the few fruits rich in monounsaturated fatty acids (healthy fats). When you have mild hypercholesterolemia, adding avocado in your diet regularly can improve HDL levels, lower LDL and triglycerides. Apart from having healthy fatty acids, avocados are also rich in fiber, protein, anti-oxidants and vitamins.
4. Cold water fish
Salmon, sardines, mackerel and tuna are considered cold water fish. These fish contain high amounts of omega 3 fatty acids, particularly docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) and eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA). Other fish rich in omega 3 fatty acids include lake trout, flounder, herring and halibut.
Another good source of omega 3 fatty acids is flaxseed. It contains rich amounts of alpha-linoleic acid (ALA) that can reduce tissue inflammation, clear arteries of blockage and regulate blood pressure level.
Spinach, one of the healthiest green leafy vegetables, contain loads of potassium, fiber and folate. The latter is known to lower blood pressure, homecysteine levels and blood pressure. Add at least a serving of spinach to your diet to keep your cholesterol levels in check.
Turmeric is more of an anti-inflammatory actually. It contains curcumin, which can lower arterial inflammation. Chronic arterial inflammation can damage the walls, so in effect, turmeric can prevent injury to the arterial walls. Also, it can clear fatty deposits in the arteries. Using turmeric in your dishes can benefit you and your family more than you know.
This list can go on and on. There are actually many foods that are heart friendly and enjoyable to eat at the same time. All you have to do is to look for a lot of fiber, omega 3 fatty acids, essential amino acids and vitamins. Start eating healthy today. Your heart will thank you for that.
- geralt on Pixabay