All You Need to Know About Cholesterol
Do you have bad cholesterol? Does it make you feel apprehensive? Bad cholesterol is common amongst most of us, and if not taken care of at the right time, will cause complications.
So how can you raise the levels of good cholesterol in your body system? What are the best cholesterol (HDL) foods?
What are HDL and LDH cholesterols? Our body system is responsible for the synthesis of two different cholesterol types. They are known as LDL (Low-Density Lipoprotein) and HDL (High-Density Lipoprotein). High-density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterols are considered healthy and good. High-density lipoprotein (HDL) will help convey cholesterol away from other body parts and transfer it to your liver. In this way, all types of heart-related diseases would be prevented. Low-density lipoproteins (LDL), on the other hand, gets stuck inside your blood vessels and negatively affect both your heart and brain. Inadequate HDL and excess of LDL usually make you vulnerable to cardiovascular complications.
Which Cholesterol Type is Bad?
What generally comes to your mind whenever you wonder about cholesterol? You probably think of either “high” or “bad” cholesterol. But there is also a “good” cholesterol type that is essential to your body.
HDL (High-density lipoprotein) is a good type of cholesterol and the type required by your body. LDL (Low-density lipoprotein) is, in contrast, the bad cholesterol type and the kind you ought to frown at. LDL, HDL, and triglycerides are types of fat in the blood that make up the total cholesterol amount.
High-density lipoprotein can be likened to a vacuum cleaner for cholesterol in our body. When it is at its safe levels in the blood, it cleanses extra cholesterol and other plaque buildups in your blood vessels and then sends it to the liver. Your liver then expels it from your body in several forms. Most importantly, this helps to reduce your vulnerability to heart attack, stroke, and heart disease.
Take some time to learn more about HDL and food types you should be taking to boost your HDL ratio in the total cholesterol.
01. Olive Oil
The type of heart-beneficial fat found in olive oil can lower LDL’s inflammatory effects (Low-Density Lipoprotein) cholesterol in your body.
Use pure olive oil instead of other fats and oils when cooking at low temperatures since pure olive oil breaks down at high temperatures.
Use extra-virgin olive oil in your sauces, salad dressings, and to flavor foods after cooking. Sprinkle some chopped olives on salads or include them in soups, just like Sicilian fish soup. Always ensure to use extra-virgin olive oil with limits since it is high in calories.
02. Wild Salmon
Wild Salmon is very good for your heart. It is rich in omega 3 fatty acids, which are packed full of “good” cholesterol. It is highly recommended to have at least two (2) to three (3) servings of these salmon per week. However, you should remember that not all nutrients get absorbed during the process of digestion. Therefore, you should get hold of essential nutrients from whole foods so that all nutrients might be absorbed entirely.
Oats are relatively high in soluble fiber, which is helpful to keep LDL cholesterol from being absorbed into the bloodstream. Some of the soluble fiber is in the form of fiber (beta-glucan) tied to reduce LDL cholesterol. Taking 3g of beta-glucan daily helps to improve heart health, and you may get up to half that quantity from 3/4 glass of dry oats.
04. Beans and Legumes
Just like whole grains, beans, and legumes are a brilliant source of soluble fiber. Reach out for lentils, black beans, kidney beans, navy beans, black-eyed peas, etc. Canned beans have almost half as much folate as in cooked dry beans. Folate (vitamin B9) is an important vitamin that is heart-friendly. Beans and other legumes are great in dishes like kale soup, Cajun corn and kidney bean salad, and Italian-style white bean.
A common adage says, “taking an apple daily keeps the doctors away” I hope you have some belief about that. Hey, listen, it might be true! This crunchy fruit is a high-ranked pectin source, which may reduce LDL cholesterol levels to help balance your LDL-to-HDL ratio. Apples are also packed with polyphenols. A 2013 study proved that these polyphenols could keep your blood vessels from getting inflamed or clogged by stopping the bad cholesterol from oxidizing.
06. Whole Grains
Whole grains, cereals, bran, and brown rice, may reduce your bad cholesterol and total cholesterol. This, in turn, helps to give the good levels some percentage boost. And this is so because these foods are high in fiber (specifically soluble fiber), known to help reduce LDL.
Take at least two glasses of whole grains daily. This could be as simple as a comforting breakfast plate of oatmeal, 100% whole-grain loaves of bread for lunch, and brown rice dinner.
Albacore or albacore tuna can be considered good cholesterol food. This will not only improve our cardiovascular health but helps to reduce blood pressure. The chances of getting unnecessary blood clots are also lowered with tuna. You could as well grill or bake tuna in the mixture to do away with its little unhealthy fats.
08. Fatty Fish
Fish like herring, tuna, mackerel, and salmon, are brimming with omega-3 fatty acids. These fats do not directly increase HDL cholesterol but can reduce your triglycerides (an unhealthy fat in your blood).
They boost your heart health in many ways, like lowering unnecessary blood clots’ risk and lowering blood pressure.
09. High-fiber Fruit
Slice these fibrous fruits and stir them with cereal or oatmeal; you could also create a delicious smoothie with your blender. They are a great plain too, either as an after-dinner recipe or a mid-afternoon snack.
Halibut is yet another fish that is good for your heart! The American Health Association has recommended the consumption of halibut up to three times weekly. Just in case you do not like this fish, you could try other fish such as lake trout or sardines. Another great alternative could be some fish oil supplements.
The fruit is high in monounsaturated fiber and, both of which are necessary for maintaining healthy cholesterol levels. A research study found that adults with larger body weights who take one avocado each day had lowered bad cholesterol levels more than adults who skipped this creamy green fruit.
Flax seeds and their oil also are high in omega-3 fatty acids. Many vegetarians indirectly use flaxseed as an alternative source of omega-3 fatty acids because of the heart-healthy fats they possess. It is nearly impossible for your body to break down whole flax seeds. This means they go through your GIT entirely intact and would never leave any of their nutrients behind.
You could sprinkle some grounded flax seeds onto your morning oatmeal, cereal, dips, yogurt, salads, or some baked foods. Flaxseed oil is a well beneficial supplement to salad smoothies or dressings.
13. Red Wine
If you had ever thought red wine is only meant for facials and occasional parties, then you might be wrong! Red wine is among the top High-Density Lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol foods, and it offers a list of benefits to our health. Taking just one glass of red wine may increase your good cholesterol levels by 4mgdl-1. However, it does not lower LDL cholesterol levels that much.
Strawberries, raspberries, blueberries, cranberries, and blackberries are filled with antioxidant compounds such as phenolic acids, anthocyanins, tannins, carotenoids, and stilbenes, which are well known to lower inflammation and maintain a healthy cholesterol level.
Soy-based foods are not meant for vegetarians alone. Incorporating these foods into our diets is a brilliant way to reduce our meat consumption rate. When we eat less meat, our LDL level most likely drops, and our HDL level most likely increases.
However, the benefits seen between cholesterol levels and soy may result from consuming less meat and taking more heart-beneficial food, not just because of soy specifically. Extra-firm tofu grills food nicely, and tofu vegetable “kebab recipe” pleases vegetarians alone and most people who love eating meat.