High cholesterol levels in your body can be detrimental to your health. It becomes important to lower cholesterol levels to avoid heart problems and stroke. It can be challenging to maintain a diet by pushing your food cravings away. However, it does not mean you have to only consume tofu or oats.
According to a study released in April 2021 in the journal BMC Medicine, people who consume a diet high in processed sugar, butter, and low-fibre bread but low in fruits and vegetables are at an increased risk of developing cardiovascular disease. Here are some low-cholesterol foods that won’t push you to compromise on your taste.
Healthy Swaps For Low Cholesterol
Fish Over Chicken
People who are non-vegetarians should go for fish instead of opting for chicken. Fish is a rich source of essential nutrients like iodine, thiamine, selenium, and omega-3 fatty acids. Since fish has a lower saturated fat level than other foods, it is considered helpful for people with high cholesterol.
Nuts Over Salty Crunchy Snacks
People usually end up munching on salty snacks, which can lead to increased cholesterol levels. Nuts are super healthy and contain potent antioxidants, protein, soluble fibre and unsaturated fats.
Also Read: 7 Reasons Why Your Cholesterol Level Is Not Reducing
Red Wine Over Cocktails
Red wine is a healthy swap over cocktails. It contains antioxidants that can lower bad cholesterol and boost the good ones (high-density lipoprotein). As per a study published by the National Library Of Medicine in 2022, it was observed that people who consumed wine witnessed an increase in HDL, serotonin, and dopamine levels.
Dark Chocolate Over Milk Chocolate
You should opt for dark chocolates when you crave something sweet. Dark chocolates are powerful antioxidants that reduce the risk of heart disease and diabetes. A 2020 study published in the European Journal of Preventive Cardiology found that eating chocolate once a week reduced the risk of clogged arteries by 8%.
Mayonnaise Over Low-fat Yoghurt
Mayonnaise can increase the fat content in your food, whether you use it for garnishing your meals or adding it as a base for a burger. You can swap it with low-fat yoghurt as an alternative.
Also Read: How High Cholesterol Affects Your Eyes: Signs You Should Not Ignore
Popcorn Over Chips
Most people tend to repeatedly eat chips, which are unhealthy and can cause weight gain as well. Popcorn is a healthy alternative to chips that can help control cholesterol levels. It contains fibre and trans fats and is low in calories, perfect for your midnight cravings. However, ensure you do not add too much butter and salt to maintain its nutritional value. To give your popcorn flavour, use parmesan cheese or other ingredients.
You should consume foods rich in healthy fats, omega-3 fatty acids, seeds, and oils to lower cholesterol levels. Low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol levels can be decreased by eating a diet low in saturated and trans fats. It is well known that foods made from plants lower cholesterol levels. Therefore, if you typically consume fish and meat, substitute a complete vegetarian meal for at least one of your meals. You should also consult with your doctor or dietician before making any new changes to your diet or if you are on medication.