High cholesterol leads to stroke and other heart ailments and it is said to be one of the major causes of deaths in the U.S. High cholesterol levels lead to numerous deaths globally every year and the risk of heart diseases is twice in people with high cholesterol levels compared to those who have lower levels.
You can keep your cholesterol levels under control by taking care of your diet. Here are some foods and beverages, which naturally lower your cholesterol levels and boost your heart's health.
Fish provides you with Omega-3 fatty acids in abundance, which has various health benefits. Omega-3 aids in triggering good cholesterol (HDL) level in your body. HDL performs the function of streaming through the body and removing the bad cholesterol (LDL) accumulated in unwanted parts of the body. Unlike LDL, HDL helps in lowering heart ailment risks. According to the American Heart Association (AHA) fatty fish like salmon should be consumed twice a week. Also, fish like tuna, sardines and mackerel can be eaten for the heart health benefits.
2. Green tea
Consumption of 10 cups of green tea is said to have a significant impact in lowering the bad cholesterol (LDL) from the blood. Apart from this, green tea is also known to provide you with high doses of antioxidants.
Next time you munch on an apple make sure you do it with the skin intact. Its skin contains a soluble fibre called pectin, which pushes bad cholesterol out of the body through the digestive system. The soluble fibre pectin is also found in the pulp of citrus fruits. Hence, prefer having fibrous fruits instead of juices.
Apart from being a great source of protein, beans also contains soluble fibre, which helps in lowering the cholesterol levels. You could substitute meat with beans in your diet and enjoy its health benefits.
5. Red wine
Consumption of red wine in moderation provides you with many health benefits, and raising the HDL or good cholesterol level is one of them. A study revealed that it reduces LDL or bad cholesterol after a few months if consumed daily in moderate quantities. It also helps in keeping the blood vessels healthy with the help of antioxidants called poly-phenols which is present in it.
Nuts like walnuts, pecans and pistachios contain fibres, minerals, vitamins and even monosaturated fats, which is good for the heart. Nuts help in deducting the level of both good and bad cholesterol. Nuts consist of a compound called plant sterols, which prevents the cholesterol consumed by us from entering the bloodstream.
Garlic is a super food, which helps in cutting down the cholesterol levels. A research revealed that garlic extract prevented the secretion of cholesterol by the liver and is also said to lower the blood pressure apart from boosting heart health. Garlic also helps in strengthening your bones.
Dark chocolate consists of antioxidants called flavonoids, which help in depleting the cholesterol level from the heart. The presence of these antioxidants is more in dark chocolate compared to milk chocolate and white chocolate. Dark chocolate should be consumed in tiny amounts in order to enjoy its health benefits.
Apart from adding these foods and drinks to your diet, make sure you visit your doctor for regular heart check ups and also workout in order to stay fit and increase the longevity of life. Make sure you don't consume junk or oily foods in excessive quantities.