There’s often mixed messaging around cholesterol but essentially, it’s an important fatty substance which helps our body to function, keeps us healthy, helps to produce hormones and digest foods.
However, according to Chest Heart & Stroke Scotland, if your cholesterol is too high, it can lead to coronary artery disease which can in turn, lead to heart attacks.
High cholesterol can happen to anybody regardless of age or weight but if you have a high-fat diet, it can increase your chances of having high cholesterol.
Thankfully, the health and nutrition experts at Prepped Pots powered by MuscleFood have revealed seven foods that can be incorporated into any diet to improve cholesterol levels.
The foods that lower cholesterol levels
Ashleigh Tosh, a nutrition expert at Prepped Pots shared her top foods for lowering cholesterol:
Adding berries such as strawberries, blueberries and raspberries into your diet is an easy and tasty way to lower your cholesterol. They are packed with antioxidants and fibre that improve your overall heart health. Enjoy them on their own or add them to shakes and breakfasts.
Fatty fish like salmon are rich in omega-3 and can increase our levels of ‘good’ cholesterol. Other types of fatty fish include tuna and sardines.
This popular fruit contains healthy fats which lower LDL cholesterol and increase HDL cholesterol, giving it the perfect balance. Because they are a fatty fruit, try to limit yourself to half an avocado a day.
Garlic contains compounds that can lower cholesterol and high blood pressure. It’s a vegetable which can be easily incorporated into just about any recipe. You can also take this in supplement form.
Almonds and walnuts are filled with healthy fats and fibres contributing to a healthy heart. Make a trail mix and eat around an ounce or two a day or add them into salads, breakfasts and smoothies.
Fibre rich vegetables
Vegetables are an important part of any healthy diet. Fibre rich veg like broccoli and brussel sprouts are particularly good for the heart, having a positive impact on cholesterol levels.
In moderation, dark chocolate can contribute to a healthy heart. In order to reap the benefits opt for a chocolate with at least a 70% cocoa content.
Tosh added that dietary changes are just one part of lowering cholesterol saying, “It’s important to remember that good cholesterol health comes from other elements too. A healthy diet, regular exercise and limits on alcohol and smoking are all crucial to good heart health.”