6 foods that will lower your cholesterol in three months
High blood cholesterol is a key factor in the development of heart disease, which takes three times as much life as a breast tumor and twice as much as lung cancer. The good news is that reducing cholesterol is the most important thing you can do to reduce your health risk. Is it enough to just change the diet or is it only possible with the use of statins? The expert’s response is that it is possible to significantly reduce cholesterol levels by dietary changes. Better yet, you don’t have to give up eggs or chocolate. It is important that you combine 6 types of foods and in three months you will have 20 percent less cholesterol.
In addition, studies showed that plant steroids reduce cholesterol levels by seven to 10 percent in three weeks.
Smart foods include proactive yogurt, as well as other products containing stanols and sterols. These natural molecules found in plants block the absorption of bad cholesterol from foods, which is then released from the body.
Quantity: It is necessary to intake 2 grams with the most extensive meal of the day, daily. The best source is yogurt. Instead, you can eat six small teaspoons of vitamin-enriched margarine to produce the same amount of sterol, yielding 150 calories and 18 grams of fat.
Expert Tip: Take them with a main meal as sterols reduce the amount of fat absorbed. “A sip of morning coffee or margarine crumbs during the day will not produce the same effect.”
2 – High-Fiber Foods
The high fiber content of beans and stews means they cannot be easily digested in the gut. The fiber binds to the cholesterol so that it is ejected with the waste matter. Fiber-rich bread should be introduced into the diet.
Evidence: A meta-analysis in 67 studies on the relationship between fiber and cholesterol found that consuming higher amounts of fiber helps reduce bad LDL cholesterol by a small but significant amount. Foods with a fiber metric, such as beans, also cause the body to absorb less saturated fat, which helps control body weight and protect the arteries from fatty deposits.
Amount: Eighteen grams per day. About five grams comes from oat-based products, and to get the rest of the amount you need, it’s enough to take a fiber-rich toast and two tablespoons of beans. Fruits and vegetables will also increase fiber intake.
Expert Tip: You will also lower your cholesterol levels if you just substitute white bread with graham.
Most nuts, including almonds, walnuts, and peanuts, are good for reducing cholesterol. Saline variants should be avoided, especially if you still have high blood pressure. It is still not clear how these fruits affect cholesterol lowering, but it may be that it contains plant sterols as well as monounsaturated fats that protect blood vessels from damage. In addition, they are rich in fiber and vitamin E.
Evidence: In 2010, when analyzing 25 studies conducted in the United States regarding the consumption of nuts and blood fat levels, it was concluded that daily consumption of eight to 10 fruits lowers the total cholesterol level by five percent, and that these fruits are particularly useful for those with high levels of bad LDL cholesterol.
Amount: Between 25 and 50 grams per day.
Expert Tip: Nuts are saturated, so they not only reduce cholesterol, but also reduce the need for constant nibbling. Although, in theory, they are very caloric, it is unlikely that any energy is utilized.
4- Soy milk:
Soy milk, soy nuts, and soy yogurt all help the liver eliminate bad LDL cholesterol from the bloodstream. Soy can also serve as a substitute for dairy products and meat.
Proof: There are some indications, including a 2011 study, that soy protein helps lower total cholesterol. Although the effects were modest, some experts say that because soy products, such as tofu cheese, can often be a substitute for meat, it reduces the intake of saturated fat from other sources.
Quantity: Experts recommend at least two to three servings of soy products per day. This is the amount of half a liter of soy milk or yogurt. Cholesterol can be reduced by five percent, but the scientific evidence for this data is limited.
Expert Tip: Start with one serving a day and gradually introduce soy into the diet.
5- Olive oil
Olive oil and rapeseed, which contain mainly monounsaturated fats, neither increase nor decrease cholesterol levels. However, they do help strengthen the walls of the arteries, which makes the arteries more resistant to cholesterol. These fats are easily purified in the body.
Evidence: Studies show that replacing saturated fats such as lard and butter with these oils results in a reduction in cholesterol levels. They also help prevent LDL from causing inflammation in the arteries, a key factor in cardiovascular disease.
Amount: Two tablespoons a day to prepare meals. A 2002 study shows that consuming this amount of olive oil each day lowers total cholesterol by eight percent in six weeks. Also, virgin olive oil is known to be the best.
Expert Tip: Polyunsaturated sunflower oil fats have been thought to be as good as olive oil, but lately the overuse of sunflower oil has been shown to cause oxidation, which means an increase in deposits on the walls of the arteries. However, remember that polyunsaturated fats are still better than butter and lard.
Oats contain ingredients called beta glucan, which give it the appearance of porridge. Beta glucans form a thick gelatinous layer in the digestive tract and bind cholesterol in the intestines, preventing the body from absorbing cholesterol. Cholesterol is then released along with the resulting gelatin layer.
Evidence: An analysis of 12 studies involving over a thousand subjects showed that adding beta glucan to daily diets over oats and other cereals lowered cholesterol levels by five percent in three months.
Amount: Three grams of beta glucon per day. That equates to a smaller bowl of porridge, three oatmeal crackers or two slices of oatmeal. These amounts should also allow for a daily fiber intake of about 5 grams.
Expert Advice: Studies show that beta glucan is good for the heart and oat is very edible. There is even bread with the addition of oat bran. It would be best to regularly take three servings of oats a day to get the full effect.
How much per day can I eat?
1. A small cup of yogurt
2. 30 g of nuts – about 25 almonds, for example
3. A slice of black bread and 80 g of beans
4. 90 g of oats, oatmeal, three oatmeal and two slices of oat bread
5. Two tablespoons of olive oil or rapeseed – when cooked
6. Two soy products – 125 ml soy pudding, 70 g ground soy, soy yogurt and a glass of soy milk – great for starters
If cholesterol is so bad, why is it in our body?
– Cholesterol is a fatty substance produced by the liver that is used to build cell walls, creating a protective lining around nerves and serving in the production of other chemicals, such as hormones.
Cholesterol is combined with proteins in the body to form protective layers around tiny grains of fat absorbed from foods called lipoproteins. The purpose of this coating is to hold the fats together so that we do not have floating bits of fat in the blood.
The two lipoproteins commonly measured are low-density lipoprotein (LDL) and high-density lipoprotein (HDL). LDL is like large lumps of fat and proteins that roll along the arteries and only the liver can eliminate them from the body. As it travels, fat passes through the walls of the arteries and enters them. This process, called atherosclerosis, causes the walls of the arteries to narrow, so that blood cannot flow through them normally, resulting in blood clots that can cause a heart attack or stroke.
HDL is known as “good” cholesterol. It is much smaller and removes fat deposits from the walls of the arteries as it circulates through the body. Therefore, it is important to know the level of both cholesterol in the blood, since it is precisely the relationship between them that is essential for the risk of disease.
What causes fat levels to rise?
Fats depend on genetic inheritance and diet. In the west, many people have higher cholesterol levels than those in countries where the diet is less fatty, such as Japan. Consuming foods rich in saturated fat, such as butter, cream, meat products, sausages and fast foods, leads to high cholesterol.
How is cholesterol measured?
What matters is the relationship between LDL and HDL. This can be measured by a simple blood test at a health center. The result is a volume of cholesterol and the unit is millimoles per liter of blood, or mmol. It is good that the LDL is below 3 mmol and the total cholesterol limit is 5 mmol. People at increased risk of heart disease – those with high blood pressure, obese, elderly, or with a family history of the disease, should have a total cholesterol of no more than 4 mmol, with LDL of no more than 2 mmol. Who has more than 8 mmol of total cholesterol falls into the medium and high risk group, depending on age and pressure. The result of as much as 5 or 6 mmol in some people may be too high, more precisely, in those who have other risk factors, such as, for example, rheumatic arthritis.
How often should cholesterol be checked?
After the age of 40, cholesterol levels should be controlled every five years. If you have heart disease or high cholesterol in your family, you should start measuring immediately before your 40s.
Does having a high score mean I will get a heart attack?
Cardiovascular disease can lead to heart attack or stroke. The older the person, the greater the risk. Also, smoking, high blood pressure, hereditary history and immobility all increase the risk. The combination of high cholesterol with these factors is an alarm bell.
Will I have to take statins?
If your total cholesterol is below 5 mmol, most doctors will tell you to change your diet. If it’s high enough, you may be prescribed statins because these drugs reduce levels by 20 to 40 percent, a significant drop. Doctors will prescribe statins to anyone who has a 20 percent increased chance of developing cardiovascular disease in the next 10 years. But in any case, they will advise changes in diet.
How much can nutrition help?
Nutrition can reduce cholesterol levels by 10 to 20 percent, significantly reducing the risk of heart disease. Studies show that the average person can achieve a reduction of 13 percent. For some of us, that’s enough.
How long does it take to start acting?
To reduce your cholesterol by 20 percent, you will need to apply all the healthy eating habits mentioned above for at least three months. If you do not see changes after three months, talk to your doctor. For some people, eating healthy does not have a great effect. Once you lower your cholesterol, you will need to adhere to the rules of healthy eating.