Cholesterol is a wax like substance that is found between the lipids and the cell membranes. Not all cholesterol is considered bad. In fact cholesterol is moderate amounts in necessary for the healthy functioning of the body. Cholesterol is carried between the cells by the lipo proteins which are of two types: Low Density Lipo proteins (LDL) and High Density Lipo protein (HDL). The LDL is the major carriers of cholesterol. Excess amount of LDL cholesterol forms blocks in the arteries and leads to stroke and heart attacks.
Tips To Diet For Cholesterol
Whole Grain and Non -Processed Foods
Whole wheat products, seed breads, unpolished rice helps in maintaining the regular cholesterol levels. They are also rich in dietary fiber, minerals and vitamins. Foods like oats and oat bran are high in soluble fiber so they can lower the cholesterol levels. Oats is a recommended breakfast choice if you have high cholesterol. Avoid refined foods like Maida, processed foods like instant meals and noodles and preserved food items like pickles, fruits preserves and canned foods.
Consuming fish has shown positive effects in lowering cholesterol. Fish is rich in Omega 3 fatty acids which are beneficial for heart ailments as they reduce blood fats and atherosclerosis. Try to include fishes like trout, salmon, sardines and tuna which are rich in omega-3 fatty acids. Avoid fishes with high fat content like seer fish and sea food like prawns and crab.
Foods Rich in Anti-Oxidants and Vitamin C
Anti-oxidants have the ability to help manage the blood cholesterol levels. Green tea is rich in anti- oxidants. Include citrus fruits like oranges, grape fruit, berries like strawberry, blueberry and cranberry in your diet. Beta carotene rich foods like carrots, apricots, pumpkins, cabbages, spinach and green leafy vegetables are helpful in reducing cholesterol levels. In general, include more of fruits and vegetables in your diet at least three servings per day.
Almonds, walnuts, pecan and hazel nuts are rich in poly unsaturated fatty acids which are helpful in reducing cholesterol as they help in keeping the blood vessels healthy. But, nuts are high in fat, so a moderate amount should only be included. Use only plain or roasted nuts, not salted or any flavor coated variants.
Legumes help in reducing the blood cholesterol. They have very less fat and low glycemic index (GI). It is safe to include them at least 4 times a week in your diet as they are rich in proteins, photo nutrients, minerals, and vitamin B. Soya, lentils, beans and peas are some common forms of legumes that can be added to your diet.
Use of Garlic and Onions
Garlic and members of the onion family are heart friendly and help reduce bad cholesterol. Use a liberal amount in your cooking and while preparing salads and dressing.
Yoghurt and Dairy Products
Fat free or skimmed yoghurt is a healthy addition to a low cholesterol diet as the lactobacillus helps in reducing blood cholesterol. It is myth that you have to avoid all dairy products if you have cholesterol. This will cut down the supply of calcium and minerals and harm the body. So instead, use the fat free variety and promote the healthy functioning of the body.