4 Foods To Lower Your Cholesterol…

“I’m trying to lose weight and ‘tone up’…


And I want to lower my cholesterol…


So should I be eating a low fat diet and which foods will help me lose weight and lower my cholesterol?”


^^^ A question I got this week…


Which is also something I talked about this week during my talks on weight loss and gut health (along with many other things, like popcorn)


So, first things first….


There are certain foods which MAY lower your cholesterol.


Here’s 4 ‘cholesterol lowering’ (types of) foods:


1) Oats – they contain beta glucan which can bind to cholesterol and interfere with it’s absorption. 

3g of beta glucan per day has been shown to reduce cholesterol (that’s equivalent to 3 bowls of porridge per day, however…)



2) Unsaturated fats – swapping saturated / trans fats for polyunsaturated, such as oily fish, olive oils and nuts, can have cholesterol lowering effects



3) Plant sterols and stand – They are similar in structure to cholesterol so may block the absorption of cholesterol. 

They are found in veggies and nuts. 


However, you’d probably need to eat a ton of these to get the amount needed for the ‘cholesterol lowering’ effect (hence why there are drinks available with plant sterols in)


4) Soluble fibre – Yep, found in good old fruit, veggies, and pulses like lentils and beans!


But are we missing what’s REALLY important here?


A recent study ‘of all studies’ looked at the effect of high fat vs low fat diets on cholesterol levels. 


And here’s what they found:


* Low fat diets decreased bad (LDL) cholesterol


* High fat diets were superior to low fat diets with respect to good (HDL) cholesterol 


^^^ Controversial, right?


Because we now know that your ratio of good (HDL) to bad (LDL) cholesterol is a key indicator in heart disease.

^^^ As I talked about here 



And is perhaps a better indicator than TOTAL CHOLESTEROL…


But there’s more:


Weight loss / body weight appears to have an effect!


AKA


How much weight you lose on your diet…


Is probably more important. 


Particularly as every kilogram of weight loss was associated with a decrease of 1.93mg/dL in total cholesterol and 0.77mg/dL in bad (LDL) cholesterol. 


So, whether you go high fat or low fat…


Is your weight loss the most important part of all this?


We know that carrying some extra stomach fat (or having a jelly belly, as one member of my Fit For Life Body Transformation Programme called it..)


Is an added risk factor for cardiovascular disease…


Which brings me back to something I’ve been talking about a lot this week…


Being a bit rough around the edges with your diet.


Because overall intake…


Your body fat…


Your body weight…


How you look in the mirror


And how your clothes fit…


Seems to be an important factor in your cholesterol levels and risk of cardiovascular disease…


And it’s why having a flexible approach to your diet that allows you to eat higher fat some days and lower fat other days 

^^^ Depending on whether you’re in the mood for a carby risotto or a juicy steak (always rare for me)…


Whilst still achieving the body you want…


Will probably help you lower your cholesterol MORESO than just hoping that a few bowls of porridge does the trick…


Why?


Because it’s not rigid, it doesn’t make you give up high fat or high carb foods…


SO…


You’ll stick to it 


It won’t be yet another ‘failed diet’


And you’ll probably end up ditching the ‘jelly belly’ once and for all!


Speak soon,


Matt


PS. Just remember not to go from zero to hero with the fibre…the other half probably won’t appreciate it…

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