Cholesterol-friendly eating doesn’t just have to be all about oats, nuts and beans. The foods listed below are low in saturated fat, meaning you can eat them as part of a cholesterol-friendly diet. One thing to be aware of though is that these foods are fairly high in salt, so are best eaten in moderation, and where possible I’d recommend always eating them with foods that actively lower cholesterol if you have high cholesterol (I’ve included suggestions below):-
I don’t know about you, but I love tacos. Thankfully taco shells contain only 0.3g saturated fat, and soft tacos even less. It’s the fillings that can make them unhealthy, because they tend to include cheese or soured cream, but if you make your own at home they can be a really healthy and tasty cholesterol-friendly meal choice.
To help lower your cholesterol you can add kidney beans to your taco fillings, which are one of the best cholesterol-reducing foods. You can also top your tacos with guacamole, which will help to increase your good cholesterol levels.
Here are some great cholesterol-friendly taco recipes to try:-
- Caribbean chicken tacos
- Chicken tacos with pineapple salsa
- Light and yummy fish tacos
- Tilapia fish tacos with peach salsa
- Veggie tacos with tomatillo sauce
- Portobello tacos with chimichurri
- Smoky lentil & sweet potato tacos
2. Poppadoms & Naan Bread
Most of the plain shop-bought poppadoms and naan breads are low in saturated fat, which is great news for curry lovers! Poppadoms are also generally made with lentil or chickpea flour, which is high in dietary fibre that helps to lower cholesterol.
Curries can be eaten as part of a low cholesterol diet as long as you steer clear of ones with cream, butter or coconut milk sauces. If you have high cholesterol, adding chickpeas, lentils, garlic or ground flaxseeds to your curries will help to lower it.
Here are some tasty cholesterol-friendly curry recipes to try:-
- Chicken & vegetable masala
- Slow cooker chicken saag curry
- Super quick fish madras
- Masoor dhal curry
- Chickpeas & turmeric peanut butter curry
3. Filo Pastry
I truly believe that anything can taste good with a pastry topping! So I love the fact that filo pastry is low in saturated fat, meaning it can be eaten as part of a cholesterol-friendly diet. I tend to use spray oil to stick the folded bits together and give it a golden coat, which keeps the fat content low.
Sprinkling seeds over your pastry after cooking will help to lower your cholesterol, as will adding fibre-rich beans or lentils to the filling.
Here are some of my favourite cholesterol-friendly filo recipes:-
- Turkey, spinach & mushroom filo parcels
- Chicken & mushroom pie
- Spiced salmon & chickpea pie
4. Fish Fingers
Even though I’m in my thirties I still love fish fingers, so it’s great that they’re low in fat and cholesterol-friendly. I always have some stocked up in the freezer. The ‘Birds Eye’ Omega 3 ones are my favourite, as Omega 3 fatty acids can help to lower cholesterol.
5. Oven Chips/Fries
The perfect accompaniment to fish fingers!! Frozen oven chips are much healthier than you might think, but try to choose ones with a low salt content. One of my favourite comfort meals is Omega 3 fish fingers, oven chips and baked beans. This is actually a pretty good cholesterol-lowering meal because of the Omega 3s in the fish and fibre in the beans.
6. Yorkshire Puddings
Yorkshire puddings are generally cholesterol-friendly as long as you make or buy ones with less than 1.5g saturated fat per 100g (which most shop-bought ones are). So you can have a proper roast dinner without missing out! For tips on how to make a cholesterol-friendly roast dinner, see this blog post.