High cholesterol: Nutritionist reveals top prevention tips
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Cholesterol is a waxy fat-like substance made in the liver. A person’s diet largely impacts cholesterol. Foods rich in fibre can significantly help lower levels of LDL ‘bad’ cholesterol and reduce the risk of serious complications. Drinking green tea could also help.
In a study published in BMC Nutrition Journal, the effects of green tea consumption on blood lipids were analysed.
Thirty-one trials with a total of 3321 subjects were included in the meta-analysis.
“In general, green tea intake significantly lowered the total cholesterol and low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterols levels compared with those in the control,” noted the study.
It continued: “Green tea consumption did not affect high-density lipoprotein (HDL) ‘good’ cholesterol; however, it reduced the triglycerides compared with that in the control.”
The study concluded that consumption of green tea lowered LDL cholesterol but not HDL cholesterol.
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Green tea contains catechins and other antioxidant compounds which seem to help lower LDL and total cholesterol levels.
In another study, scientists gave rats drinking water infused with catechins and epigallocatechin gallate, another beneficial antioxidant in green tea.
It was found that after 56 days, scientists noticed cholesterol and “bad” LDL levels had reduced by around 14.4 percent and 30.4 percent in the two groups of rats on high-cholesterol diets.
The Faculty of Medicine at The University of Hong Kong also investigated the link between green tea and health.
They stated that green tea increases the antioxidant capacity of the blood, which protects LDL cholesterol from oxidation.
Oxidised cholesterol may be mistaken as bacteria by the body’s immune system.
When this occurs, the immune system tries to fight if off with inflammation inside of the artery wall.
This is a factor that contributes to atherosclerosis and heart disease.
Apart from sipping on green tea to help lower cholesterol, there is a diet which comes up tops for its numerous health benefits.
The Mediterranean diet is a heart-healthy diet that has been shown to tackle cholesterol and other heart disease markers.
The Mediterranean diet is high in vegetables, fruits, legumes, nuts, beans, cereals, grains, fish and unsaturated fats such as olive oil.
It also usually includes a low intake of meat and dairy foods and has been shown to be effective in keeping cholesterol levels healthy.
Other foods synonymous for their cholesterol-lowering properties include:
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