High cholesterol in the body is a leading cause of heart disease. Too much cholesterol sticks to the artery walls and narrows the walls, making it difficult for blood and oxygen to travel through the body system.
When the arteries narrow your heart is forced to beat faster as it has extra work to pump blood through narrowed arteries. As cholesterol builds up, arteries clog up. This increases the chances of them rupturing and causing internal blood clots leading to heart attack or stroke.
Adding heart-healthy foods in your diet has significant, positive effects on your overall health. It is one of the easiest ways to lower your cholesterol levels and start leading a healthy lifestyle.
The best part about using this method to lower your cholesterol is that you don’t have to make sudden changes in the foods you eat. Most of the heart-healthy foods you need are already in your cupboard.
Start on a heart-healthy diet
The first step toward starting on a heart-healthy diet is to eat foods that provide soluble fibre, such as carrots, pears, apples, oranges, rye bread, oat meal and honey cheerios cereal. Here’s how you can lower your cholesterol in a few easy steps on a healthy diet:
Begin your day with a bowl of whole grain oat cereal. Pack a small container of your favourite cereal and carry it out with you, if you are on a rush. If you don’t want to sacrifice good taste for health benefits, honey cheerios cereal is a good option for you.
Eat rye bread or a sandwich for lunch instead of your usual fatty fast foods. This will not only make for a filling meal, but also a heart-healthy, soluble fibre rich meal.
Try adding garbanzo beans or kidney in your meals and where possible avoid dressing your salad with salad oil.
Replace salty snacks with soy nuts and have apples, oranges and carrots on hand for those quick snacks.
Choose low-fat dairy products, skim milk and cholesterol-free soymilk over regular high cholesterol dairy products available in the market.
Finally, why not make your own trail mix using your favourite whole grain cereal? This makes for a delicious, heart-healthy meal. Be sure to add dried fruit in the mix to balance your trail mix more.
There you have it – simple, everyday tips to help you lower your cholesterol in a few easy steps. You are what you eat so be conscious of what goes into your system.