There’s no need to miss out on delicious comforting roast dinners when you’re managing your cholesterol, as long as you stick to these simple rules:-
When I first found out I had high cholesterol I thought I’d be really limited in terms what I could eat. I knew oats and beans were key for reducing cholesterol naturally, so I was imagining a life of bland porridge, boring bean salads and tasteless stews. But (thankfully!) after doing lots of research, I discovered there are actually tons of foods that fit into a cholesterol-friendly diet, and lots of delicious ways to cook them.
Here’s a list of the cholesterol-friendly foods I eat on a regular basis (click here for a printable version):-
It’s not always easy finding cholesterol-friendly shop-bought lunches, especially if you’re in a hurry and don’t have time to read through all of the nutritional information. Traffic light food nutrition labels have made it a lot easier as it means you can immediately see how much saturated fat it contains, which is key when looking for cholesterol-friendly foods.
Most of the ingredients that make desserts taste good, like butter and cream, are high in saturated fats, which unfortunately means they’re not great for anyone with high cholesterol. Luckily though there are lots of chefs and bloggers who have dedicated a lot of time to creating healthy dessert recipes that don’t include high fat ingredients, but still taste great.
I used to avoid salads at all costs because I always thought they were boring, and they never left me feeling satisfied. But now that I’m trying to keep my cholesterol low, I’ve realised that salads are a great way to fit lots of cholesterol-reducing foods into one meal.
A lot of cholesterol diet advice focuses on reducing bad cholesterol (LDL), however it’s also hugely beneficial to raise your levels of high-density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol – the “good” cholesterol. Experts believe HDL acts as a scavenger, carrying bad cholesterol away from the arteries and back to the liver, where it is broken down and passed from the body.
I’ve spent a lot of time over the last few months searching for recipes that are cholesterol friendly and still taste good. I haven’t found a huge amount of meat-based recipes containing foods like beans that actively lower cholesterol, so I tend to add them myself or have them on the side.
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I really love chocolate, so when I found out I had high cholesterol I was worried that I’d have to cut it out of my diet. Imagine my delight then when I found out that eating chocolate can actually help to reduce cholesterol! There’s a catch though…well two actually. It has to be dark chocolate (70% cocoa or higher), and it has to be eaten in moderation, because unfortunately it’s still pretty high in sugar and saturated fats.
Seeds are packed with dietary fibre and healthy fats, which can help to lower cholesterol. They are also a good source of protein and full of all sorts of other nutrients, making them a great addition to meals, or eaten on their own as a snack.