Along with exercise, a proper diet is one of the most important ways to deal with high levels of bad cholesterol. In fact, choosing to include cholesterol lowering foods in each meal can be so effective that medication to control cholesterol becomes unnecessary. Fortunately, there are a number of foods that can help lower excessive levels of bad cholesterol while at the same time promote the elevation of good cholesterol levels.
Just about any cholesterol diet will include the use of whole grains. Oats have proven to be very important when it comes to returning high cholesterol levels to an acceptable range. Consuming an oat cereal at breakfast time, especially one fortified with psyllium or flaxseed, will help the body to eliminate excess fat in the bloodstream and restore proper levels of cholesterol throughout the body.
Fruits are also among some of the best cholesterol lowering foods. Keeping apples, oranges, and pears on hand add fiber to the diet and should be part of any low cholesterol diet. Various types of berries are also important to getting proper levels of nutrients as well as helping to get rid of bad cholesterol. Try adding fresh blackberries, strawberries, and blueberries to the meals, possibly as an alternative to desserts laden with empty calories and loads of fat.
Peas and beans are also among some of the best cholesterol lowering foods. Both dried and canned versions work very well. Chickpeas, kidney beans, black-eyed peas, and pinto beans are just a few examples of foods that offer plenty of protein while also helping to lower bad cholesterol levels.
When it comes to vegetables, think green. Leafy vegetables like watercress, leeks, collards, turnips, and spinach are excellent cholesterol lowering foods. Broccoli and Brussels sprouts are also great additions to a low cholesterol diet. For some additional color to complement the green, add some whole kernel corn, cauliflower, or some carrots to the meal.
Fish is one of the best of all cholesterol lowering foods, in that various types of fresh water fish and seafood help to lower bad cholesterol while promoting the good cholesterol levels. Tuna and salmon are among the best options. However, trout and swordfish are also excellent choices and help to add some variety to the diet.
Seasonings can also be important when it comes to preparing your cholesterol lowering foods. Garlic and cayenne pepper will boost the effectiveness of the foods, which in turn helps you to lower your bad cholesterol levels a little faster. In addition, the use of sage, pepper, and various types of dried herbs to season your meals will add visual interest and flavor to your recipes. This will make sticking to cholesterol lowering foods as the mainstays of your daily diet plan that much easier.