Keeping an eye on your cholesterol levels - especially your low-density lipoprotein, or LDL (the so-called "bad cholesterol") is vital for heart health. What you eat, how you move, and the choices you make about your overall health can make a huge difference in your levels. Under the guidance of your doctor, here are some foods you might consider to help support healthy cholesterol levels:
High-fiber foods and foods with soluble fiber can help reduce how much cholesterol is absorbed into your bloodstream. Choose foods like ground flax seed, oatmeal, oat bran, kidney beans, apples, bananas, or berries. Adding extra fiber to your diet is also great for your whole digestive system, too. Fiber helps your digestion and keeps things going as often as they should be going, which is so much better than having things back up.
Omega-3 fatty acids can reduce triglycerides, and also your cholesterol levels, too. Foods high in omega-3 fatty acids include fish, such as salmon, tuna, and mackerel, and nuts, such as walnuts and almonds. You can also add a supplement if dietary omega-3 is difficult to come by. Fish oil is a common one, but there are others out there if burping fish all day is not your idea of a good time. There are even some burpless supplements, so check your natural foods store or health care aisle at the grocery store, or ask your doctor for a recommendation of a brand they prefer.
Switch up the fats you eat as well as the ones you cook with by choosing olive oil instead of butter. Trans fats, like ones that show up in processed cakes, cookies, and snack foods, are going to raise your cholesterol levels, and aren't a wise choice. Bottom line, if your body is a factory, it can only produce things that are as high-quality as the materials you put in. Fuel your body with a wide array of plants, healthy foods, and nutrient-rich choices, and you'll see a change in your cholesterol numbers in no time.