Cholesterol is considered to be almost the main enemy of a healthy heart and blood vessels. Is it really? What influences his education? And what foods do we need to maintain healthy cholesterol levels?
Are you my enemy or not?
Before figuring out which foods help lower your cholesterol, it's important to understand if it's really bad. After all, our liver regularly produces 70% of all cholesterol in the body. The rest comes from foods high in cholesterol. Why do we need this substance?
In fact, cholesterol performs a number of important functions: it serves as a building material for cell membranes, enriches cells with useful substances and even neutralizes some harmful ones. But its most important mission is the synthesis of hormones such as testosterone, estrogen, cortisone, etc.
Cholesterol is able to move inside the body only in the form of lipoproteins - complex compounds consisting of fats and proteins. It is customary to distinguish several groups of these substances, differing in density. Beneficial high-density lipoproteins protect our heart and blood vessels from various diseases. This is the so-called good cholesterol. Foods that are well-chosen for a healthy diet can increase dietary levels. But harmful low-density lipoproteins practically do not dissolve, and therefore easily accumulate cholesterol, forming atherosclerotic plaques. Such cholesterol is already considered "bad". If you find that its level is higher than normal, first of all, you need to review the diet and include foods that reduce blood cholesterol.
So what foods are cholesterol-free? First of all, these are any vegetables rich in fiber and plant fiber. Especially doctors recommend white cabbage and cauliflower, zucchini, pumpkin, carrots, rutabagas and turnips. Fresh vegetable salads are the best option. As a dressing, you should choose cold-pressed oils: olive, corn, linseed or soy. They also help eliminate bad cholesterol. Vegetables are followed by fruits, the most useful of which is grapefruit. Just 200-300 g of this citrus per day will help reduce cholesterol levels by 8%. Apples, persimmons, bananas and avocados are also effective in this regard.
Fish is one of the foods that remove cholesterol from the body. Oddly enough, it is best if it is marine fatty fish, such as salmon, salmon or herring. They effectively remove excess cholesterol, and omega-3 acids reduce the risk of heart attack. When choosing meat, preference should be given to lean beef stewed with vegetables or baked in the oven. However, it is recommended to eat it no more than 2-3 times a week. But chicken breast or skinless turkey can be eaten at least every day.
Oatmeal is another healthy cholesterol-lowering food. It can be used to cook not only porridge, but also healthy baked goods from wholemeal flour. By the way, oat bran is also approved by doctors. Eat brewed bran or add to a variety of meals - you are guaranteed a normal cholesterol level. Don't forget about nuts and seeds, which are rich in healthy fatty acids. To enhance the benefits, choose dried nuts, but never fried.
When composing a healthy diet, you should once and for all give up foods that are prohibited with high cholesterol. Topping the blacklist is fast food of all manifestations, as well as foods high in fat. Lamb, pork, fatty beef and poultry, offal, smoked meats, semi-finished meat products actively contribute to the increase in cholesterol. Shrimp and squid, with all their beneficial properties, are also contraindicated in high cholesterol.
With eggs, or rather egg yolk, you should be extremely careful. After all, it is in it that cholesterol lurks, so its consumption should be minimized. A large amount of unhealthy fats is found in sour cream, cottage cheese, cheese, cream, milk. True, it is easy to find an alternative here. For example, instead of sour cream, choose natural yogurt, and instead of regular cottage cheese, choose low-fat yogurt.
Fans of first courses also need to revise the menu, in particular, replace rich soups with light broths based on dietary meat or vegetables. Second courses should be prepared with a minimum amount of oil and without frying. Mayonnaise, ketchup, margarine and any other sources of trans fats should be gone from the refrigerator for good.
Foods rich in carbohydrates with high cholesterol are contraindicated. This applies to all kinds of bakery and confectionery products, as well as any sweets. Cakes, pastries, cookies, chocolate bars, sweets are strictly prohibited. As with any caffeinated drinks, soda, homemade compotes and alcohol.
Knowing which foods lower cholesterol levels, it is quite easy to create a balanced menu for every day. This is the first and most important step in the fight against diseases of the cardiovascular system.