10 Foods that help reduce LDL (bad) cholesterol and improve overall heart health

Below is a list of foods that help to reduce LDL (bad) cholesterol and triglycerides as well as many other heart healthy benefits. Including these foods in your diet daily will help reduce your risk of cardiovascular disease.

1. Avocados

avocado reduce ldl (bad) cholesterolAvocado can easily replace mayonnaise or cream cheese  on a burger, sandwich or bagel and is great thrown into a salad or added to mexican food.

In a recent study, patients with excess cholesterol in their blood showed a decrease of serum total cholesterol (17%), LDL (bad) cholesterol (22%) and triglycerides (22%), and an increase of HDL (good) cholesterol (11%) levels when they consumed a diet high in avocado.(a.)

2. Steamed Dark Green Vegetables

steamed vegetables

Steaming vegetables helps to clear LDL (bad) cholesterol from your body. Researchers think steaming of dark green leafy vegetables may help in the binding of bile acids. this makes your liver use up more LDL (bad) cholesterol into order to make bile, which leaves less circulating LDL in your bloodstream.

Steam-cooked collard greens, kale, mustard greens, broccoli, green bell pepper, and cabbage in your daily diet lower the risk of cardiovascular disease and cancer, advance human nutrition research, and improve your health. (b)

3. Pomegranate

PomegranateAtherosclerosis (hardening of the arteries) happens when plaque builds up in the walls of your arteries. This decreases blood flow, which can lead to heart attacks and strokes.

Researchers have found that pomegranate juice helps prevent hardening of the arteries by reducing damage to your blood vessels and may also reverse its progression. (c)

4. Almonds

almonds

Almonds are an easy addition to your day. Research has shown that just half a cup a day of almonds will give you a 10% reduction in your LDL (bad) cholesterol numbers. However, they are also high in calories, with half a cup being around 400 calories. All things in moderation. (d)

5. Virgin Olive Oil

olive oilVirgin olive oil is full of monounsaturated fatty acids which are considered a healthy dietary fat.

Monounsaturated fatty acids help reduce risk factors of heart disease. They have been shown to lower triglycerides, total cholesterol and LDL (bad) cholesterol. There is some research that shows that they also may benefit insulin levels and blood sugar control.

If you can find Olive oil rich in polyphenols, it has been shown to increase HDL (good) cholesterol levels and decreases oxidative stress markers. (e)

6. Persimmon

persimmon

Persimmons are a very popular fruit in Israel. They contain a high percentage of polyphenols, especially tannins, which are a very good antioxidants. Eating one medium-sized persimmon (about 100 grams) a day is enough to help fight atherosclerosis. (f)

Persimmon is another food that acts on your bile acid-binding through its tannin rich fiber. Bile acid binding is know to lower cholesterol levels including your LDL (bad) cholesterol and has been used clinically for treatment of hypercholesterolemia (excess cholesterol in your blood vessels). (f)

7. Cinnamon

cinammon

Cinnamon has been shown to reduce high cholesterol, high triglycerides and high blood pressure.

In a recent study, 2g of cinnamon per week was shown to  reduce overall blood sugar levels, systolic blood pressure and diastolic blood pressure in patients with type 2 diabetes.  Cinnamon supplementation could be considered as an additional dietary supplement option to regulate blood glucose and blood pressure levels along with conventional medications to treat type 2 diabetes mellitus.

In addition, research shows that cinnamon helps blood coagulation and prevents bleeding, while also increasing blood circulation. This includes heart tissue which is in need of regeneration in order to fight heart attacks, heart disease, and stroke. (g)

8. Cranberriescranberries

Cranberries are well know for their ability to help fight off urinary tract infections.

However, researchers have found that drinking 250-300 ml of cranberry juice a day significantly reduces cardiovascular risk factors like triglyceride levels, diastolic blood pressure, fasting glucose levels and markers of inflammation like c-reactive proteins (by 44%). (h)

9. Green Tea

green tea

In a Japanese study of 40,530 adults, researchers found that those that drank 5 cups of green tea a day had a 26% lower risk of death from heart attacks and strokes and an 16% reduction in death risk of other causes, compared to people that drank less than once cup of green tea a day.

Another study found that green tea reduced LDL (bad) cholesterol and triglyceride levels. (this study was conducted with capsules containing catechins, the active polyphenols in green tea, rather than with the beverage itself)

Green tea is also a major source of oxalate, which can cause kidney stones. This suggests that drinking more than five cups of green tea a day (or taking the equivalent in catechin capsules) might have more risks than benefits. So again all things in moderation. (i)

 10. Oatmeal

 

Eating one-and-a-half cups a day of oatmeal can lower your cholesterol by 5 to 8 percent. Oatmeal contains soluble and insoluble fiber which help prevent high cholesterol and keep your regular.

Getting both types of fiber is a big win for your body, and there’s another benefit: Fiber can also aid in weight loss, since it helps you feel full and satisfied. (j)

 

Once a day chocolate drink naturally
lowers blood pressure and cholesterol

Tikva with chocolatedrinkIn addition to these daily changes, an easy change you can make is to take a once a day chocolate drink that has the ingredients that have been shown through clinical trials to lower blood pressure and cholesterol, widen (dilate) arteries, reduce LDL (bad) cholesterol, increase circulation, dissolve plaque that is already in your arteries and reduce new plaque from forming.

 

Read more about the natural ingredients in Tikva by clicking here.

 

 

References:

a. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/8987188

b. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19083431

c. http://www.webmd.com/food-recipes/news/20050321/pomegranate-juice-may-clear-clogged-arteries

d. http://circ.ahajournals.org/content/106/11/1327.full

e. http://www.lifeextension.com/magazine/2007/9/sf_olives/page-01

f. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23171573 , https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2001/02/010202073923.htm

g. https://draxe.com/health-benefits-cinnamon/

h. http://universityhealthnews.com/daily/heart-health/top-cranberry-health-benefits-lower-triglycerides-and-boost-antioxidant-intake/ ,  http://www.webmd.com/urinary-incontinence-oab/womens-guide/cranberries-for-uti-protection

i. http://www.health.harvard.edu/heart-health/green-tea-may-lower-heart-disease-risk

j. https://nutritionfacts.org/video/can-oatmeal-reverse-heart-disease , http://www.everydayhealth.com/infographics/how-much-oatmeal-you-need-lower-cholesterol/

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