High cholesterol diet: Raised cholesterol levels significantly increase the risks of heart disease and stroke. Globally, a third of ischaemic heart disease is attributable to high cholesterol, says the World Health Organization. LDL (low-density lipoprotein) cholesterol is referred to as the ‘bad’ cholesterol, making up most of our body’s cholesterol. High levels of LDL cholesterol increase the risk of heart disease and stroke. The ‘good’ cholesterol or HDL (high-density lipoprotein) cholesterol lowers the risk for heart disease and stroke. Just like diabetes, diet plays an important role in cholesterol management. Here are 5 beverages that one can drink to keep cholesterol levels in check.
5 drinks to keep high cholesterol in check
Rich in antioxidants, green tea lowers LDL and total cholesterol levels. Green tea contains substances like catechins and epigallocatechin gallates which lower cholesterol levels. Black tea also lowers cholesterol but is less effective reportedly than green tea as it contains fewer catechins.
Antioxidants and fibre help reduce cholesterol levels and most berries are rich in these two substances. They also contain fewer calories and fat. So take half a cup of low-fat milk or yoghurt, cold water and two handfuls of any berry – strawberries, blackberries or blueberries – and blend them all into a healthy smoothie.
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According to Medical News Today, according to a 2015 study, the consumption of 450 mg drink containing cocoa flavanols twice daily for 1 month lowered “bad” LDL cholesterol levels while increasing “good” HDL cholesterol levels. However, make sure to limit chocolate drinks with added sugars and salts as they can lead to weight gain.
Lycopene in tomatoes helps lower LDL or bad cholesterol levels. When tomatoes are processed into juice, the lycopene content increases, thus making it more apt to reduce cholesterol. Tomato juice is also a storehouse of niacin and cholesterol-reducing fibres.
It may not have a significant impact but replacing cream or high-fat milk products with soy milk, which is low in saturated fat, can keep cholesterol levels in check.