Foods that Lower Cholesterol

Good Fats vs Bad Fats

Foods that lower cholesterol levels are important as it reduces the risk of heart disease and strokes.

However, there is a good side and a bad side to cholesterol, so it's just as important to learn what it is and how it affects your health.

What is Cholesterol?

Cholesterol is a fat-like waxy substance that has many vital functions. In fact, it's an important part of a healthy body as it is needed to make certain hormones and it is used for producing cell membranes and for the manufacture of bile acids.

Since cholesterol is a fat-soluble substance it cannot dissolve in blood and, as such, it is attached to compounds known as lipoproteins, which transports it to and from the cells. There are two types of cholesterol that are often discussed. They are as follows:

1. Low density cholesterol (LDL) - also referred to as "bad" cholesterol because too much of it can attach itself to the artery walls creating plaque build up that eventually cause arteries to become blocked. As such, it could provoke heart disease.

2. High density cholesterol (HDL) – also referred to as "good" cholesterol because it is responsible for transporting cholesterol away from the cells and back to the liver for reprocessing or excretion.

Keep in mind that when everything is functioning properly, this system remains in balance. The problem occurs, meaning the formation of plaque that sticks to artery walls is when there is too much cholesterol in the body for the good cholesterol (HDLs) to pick up promptly, or if there are not enough HDLs to perform their job.

Lastly, just a noteworthy comment before we discuss foods that lower cholesterol. Levels of cholesterol are greatly influenced by diet, but they are also affected by one's genetic makeup.

Foods that Lower Cholesterol

Generally, foods high in saturated fat contain substantial amounts of dietary cholesterol. In fact, the primary sources of dietary cholesterol are found in meat and dairy products while fruits and vegetables are cholesterol free.

However, reducing foods containing saturated fats and cholesterol, and eliminating all hydrogenated and hardened fats has the greatest impact on lowering cholesterol levels.

Foods that Lower Cholesterol

About Fats

What are saturated fats?

Saturated fats are of animal origin such as meat, cheese, whole milk, eggs, and butter. It's also found in plant foods such as coconut oil and palm kernel oil.

What are hydrogenated and hardened fats?

Hydrogenated and hardened fats refer to oils that have become hardened such as margarine and hard butter. However, margarine that contains plant sterols is a healthy option. It's important to note that hydrogenated fats contain high levels of trans fatty acids, which are linked to heart disease. Trans fatty acids are also known as trans fat.

So what's trans fats?

Put simply, trans-fats are man-made or processed fat that act as saturated fats but are even worse for you. Trans fats go through a chemical process called hydrogenation and, as such, it is formed when vegetable oil hardens. They are considered foods high in cholesterol and the really "bad guys."

Why are trans fats the really "bad guys"?

Trans fats are the real bad guys because it's the kind of fat that clogs the arteries. In addition, trans fats can raise LDL ("bad") cholesterol levels and they can also lower HDL ("good") cholesterol levels. As such, foods that lower cholesterol should not contain any trans fats.

Where are trans fats or trans fatty acids found?

The majority of trans fats are found in shortenings, margarine, cookies, crackers, snack foods, chips, fried foods, doughnuts, pastries, baked goods, commercially packaged foods, commercially fried food such as french fries, and other processed foods made with or fried in partially hydrogenated oils.

Why are trans fats used?

They are used by manufacturers to reduce cost as well as to extend storage life of products. In addition, it is used to improve flavor, shape, and texture.

- Foods that Lower Cholesterol -

Dietary Recommendations

1. Include the following in your diet, which are considered foods that lower cholesterol or cholesterol-lowering foods: olive oil, garlic, dried beans, grapefruit, cold-water fish, carrots, bananas, and apples.

2. Consume plenty of fiber in the form of fruits, vegetables, and whole grains. Experts state that water-soluble fiber, which is found in barley, beans, brown rice, oats, glucomannan, and fruits are very important in reducing serum cholesterol. The best foods that lower cholesterol are oat bran and brown rice bran. However, in moderation, brown rice and whole grain cereals are also good.

3. Juices, especially fresh carrot, celery, and beet juice is recommended. In fact, carrot juice helps to flush out fat from the bile in the liver. As such, this helps to lower cholesterol.

4. Consume more monounsaturated fats found in canola, olive and peanut oils, which may help lower high cholesterol levels and raise good cholesterol levels (HDLs) when used in place of saturated and trans fats. Pure virgin olive oil is recommended. However, a moderate intake of all types of fat is best.

5. Polyunsaturated fats, which are found in corn, soybean, safflower, and cottonseed oils as well as cold water fish may also help lower high cholesterol levels and raise good cholesterol levels (HDLs) when used in place of saturated and trans fats. Again, a moderate intake of all types of fat is best.

6. Reduce or try to eliminate coffee consumption because large amounts of coffee may elevate cholesterol levels.

7. Avoid heated fats, alcohol, cakes, candy, carbonated drinks, tea, gravies, nondairy creamers, pies, processed or refined foods, refined carbohydrates, tobacco, and white bread.

- Foods that Lower Cholesterol -

Natural Supplements to Fight Cholesterol

In addition to foods that lower cholesterol levels, there are some very well studied supplements that have shown to have excellent results in lowering cholesterol levels.

Although not a replacement for a healthy diet and exercise, they can be a very powerful component in promoting you're overall heart health goals. These include:

Policosanol also known as Polycosanal, which is an extract from sugar cane, has proven in numerous clinical trails to lower bad cholesterol (LDL) by up to 20% and raise beneficial cholesterol (HDL) by 10%.

Theaflavin Extract - Black and oolong tea, which is fermented green tea, contains the pigment of polyphenols known as theaflavins that are produced during the fermentation process. Theaflavins are considered the active ingredient in the fight against high cholesterol. In fact, theaflavins not only lower LDL cholesterol but also raise HDL cholesterol at the same time.

Chromium - Chromium plays an essential role in breaking down carbohydrates, proteins, and fats. Chromium has been used successfully to control blood cholesterol as well as blood glucose levels. Some experts claim that as many as 90% of American diets are low in chromium.

Beta sitosterol is a plant sterol with a chemical structure similar to cholesterol which can reduce cholesterol absorption significantly.

Selenium is a trace mineral that according to the well-renowned tome Alternative Cures helps in three ways: "First, it boosts levels of glutathione. Second, it works on its own to lower LDL. Third, it increases healthful HDL, says Dr. Miller." In fact, Dr. Miller states:

"Selenium is absolutely critical to any cholesterol-lowering program."

Rice Bran Oil – Rice bran oil contains beta sitosterol and other phytosterols that are beneficial for reducing cholesterol absorption. It also contains alpha-linolenic acid, gamma oryzanol, and tocotrienols. Gamma Oryzanol and tocotrienols have been found in human studies to reduce total cholesterol and triglycerides.

D-Limonene Oil which is a natural compound in orange peel has been shown to reduce cholesterol levels.

Lecithin Oil is a fat emulsifier that helps suspend globs of fat in the body, helping it to be excreted easier so arteries are protected from fatty buildup.

- Foods that Lower Cholesterol -

Featured Cholesterol Lowering Formula

Everyday millions of people power up their computers in search for a quality cholesterol lowering supplement.

After extensively researching the market, we discovered an excellent product created by one of the top bio-scientists in the world, but as importantly using the latest knowledge in science and technology.

The product is called Lipi-Rite from Xtend-Life Natural Products and it contains Policosanol, Beta Sitosterol, Theaflavin Extract, Chromium, Lecithin, Vitamin E oil (70% natural mixed tocopherols), Selenium, and more. In fact, it contains all of the nutrients we mentioned above and more.

All of the ingredients are scientifically combined in a synergistic way to enhance and maximize the efficacy of each other.

Xtend-Life uses only standardized herbal extracts, the purest herbal extracts with the highest quality and therapeutic benefits, and they adhere to strict pharmaceutical GMP compliance, which is the toughest in the industry.

In addition, all the ingredients used in Xtend-Life Natural Products are supported with a Certificate of Analysis (COA) on file and, in addition, the company does a series of crosschecks before purchasing any raw ingredients that guarantees their potency and safety.

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We hope this webpage discussing foods that lower cholesterol was useful to you.

To Your Health!

The Editors

Much more than Foods that Lower Cholesterol can be found at our Health Supplement Guide web-page

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