by Beverley Lewis
Dark chocolate is packed with antioxidants and is healthy, but remember not to go overboard and eat it sparingly as it is high in calories.
Cholesterol is a steroid lipid (fat), which is present in the blood. It is also necessary for the proper functioning of all cell membranes. However, an improper diet, or a diet rich in saturated fats can increase one’s risk of heart disease and stroke. So, if you want to healthy, strong heart, simply add these top 10 cholesterol lowering foods to your diet.
Legumes: These include lentils, beans, soy products and peas. Legumes are high in dietary fibre, B vitamins and phytonutrients. These nutrients protect the heart and the dietary fibre content lowers cholesterol. So include at least five servings of legumes in your diet on a weekly basis.
Oats: Include oats in your diet, as they help to lower low-density lipoprotein (LDL) or “bad” cholesterol. Soluble fibre can reduce the absorption of cholesterol into the bloodstream. Five to 10 grams of soluble fibre a day can decrease LDLcholesterol. So make sure to begin your day with a piping hot bowl of oats.
Nuts: Almonds, walnuts, cashew nuts and peanuts are known to lowercholesterol levels, according to numerous studies. So eat a handful of nuts a day (approximately 12 nuts and 24 peanuts). But remember that even though nuts are extremely healthy, they are high in calories so eat them in moderation.
Green tea: Contains antioxidants, which fight free radicals that damage cells. Green tea also lowers total cholesterol and raises HDL “good” cholesterol. So, aim for at least four cups of green tea a day. But you must follow a balanced diet as well.
Dark Chocolate: Can lower LDL in people who are at risk of heart disease. But make sure you eat only one or two squares of dark chocolate (make sure it contains at least 60 per cent cocoa, if not more). Dark chocolate is packed with antioxidants and is healthy, but remember not to go overboard and eat it sparingly as it is high in calories.
Read more in Health Me Up
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