September is National Cholesterol Awareness Month and it’s an important time to consider your cholesterol levels. Contrary to popular belief, cholesterol isn’t bad and you actually need it to stay healthy. Your body makes all of the cholesterol you need, but then the rest comes from the food you eat. Genetics do play a role in cholesterol balance, but you can help fight bad genes with a healthy low-cholesterol diet.
Here are the Top 5 Ways to Lower Cholesterol with Healthy Diet:
1. Step away from the animals. Only animal products contain cholesterol, so if you have dangerously high cholesterol, you should consider a more vegan-based diet. The American Heart Association suggests getting no more than 200 mg of cholesterol a day.
2. Eat your fruits and vegetables. These low-fat and high-fiber foods are always a good option to not only help your heart, but keep your weight maintained.
3. Just say no to fats. Try to avoid trans fats completely and limit your saturated fat intake to less than 7% of your total daily calories.
4. Fiber is your friend. Specifically, soluble fiber can reduce the absorption of cholesterol in your bloodstream and can lower your total cholesterol.
5. Get nutty. Walnuts, almonds, and other nuts can reduce LDL cholesterol levels. Just 1 ½ ounces a day of most nuts may reduce your risk of heart disease.
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