11 Cholesterol-Lowering Foods

Cholesterol, a substance produced by the liver in every human body, plays a vital role in the production of some hormones. It is one of the main elements of the cellular membranes, and it is essential for the proper functioning of the nerves.  Cholesterol levels are normal if you have a healthy nutritional diet, but unfortunately, the standard western diet enriched with hydrogenated fats and high amounts of carbohydrates causes an increase in the serum cholesterol concentrations.

An increase in cholesterol is one of the main risk factors which is responsible for the development of stroke, heart attack or other severe cardiovascular/cerebrovascular damage. Practicing good healthy nutritional habits may significantly reduce cholesterol levels and bring back balance to the metabolism of this vital substance. Currently, the preferred serum cholesterol concentrations in the human body are below 200mg/dL.

1. Vegetables

All vegetables, especially the green ones, represent a healthy choice of food since they are enriched with antioxidants that clear the arteries from pathological plaque formations and reduce the damages caused by oxidative stress.

Vegetables are generally known to protect the body system against free radicals and they also slow-down the aging process. Spinach, broccoli, onions, and cabbage ensures that there is an adequate fiber intake, and they provide protection to the heart muscles. Vitamins and minerals from vegetables are essential for keeping the metabolic processes balanced; this will directly lead to a decrease in the serum cholesterol concentration.

2. Nuts

Nuts contain significant amounts of polyunsaturated and monounsaturated fats.  Nuts are healthy since they represent one of the foods that are enriched with a high variety of healthy nutrients such as healthy fats, antioxidants, and vitamins.  It has been recognized in clinical trials that consuming nuts have beneficial effects on reducing bad cholesterol (LDL) levels. They are also a good choice for reducing triglycerides and cholesterol in patients who have diabetes.

Nuts protect the internal layer of the arteries from damages and reduce the size of the plaques, thereby improving the circulation and oxygenation of vital organs and tissues such as heart, brain or kidneys. Nuts represent one of the essential foods in every healthy dietary plan since they are known to be one of the main nutrients fighting obesity. Nuts are also rich in coenzyme Q10, which is especially important for people that take cholesterol-lowering medications.

More foods on next page…



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About Dr Alex Grbovic 11 Articles
Dr Aleksandar Grbović is a medical doctor from the Belgrade University, Faculty of Medicine. He is passionate about promoting medicine by bridging the gap between the patient’s and doctor’s point of view. Currently working in the biggest Occupational Medicine Institute in Serbia and attending the Radiology residency program.

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