Good news just in time for National Heart Month!
Though there are many medications that can help to lower cholesterol, the first line of defense is a diet that is rich in vegetables, fruits, whole grains, and fiber, and low in saturated fat, trans fat, and cholesterol. For many, eating healthy and losing excess weight are ideal ways to lower elevated cholesterol levels and keep those levels within a healthy range for life.
Some of the best cholesterol fighting foods are whole grains such as oatmeal, oat bran and barley. These foods are rich in a soluble fiber called beta glucan, which has been shown to lower cholesterol. In fact, according to a new study, daily consumption of whole-grain ready-to-eat cereal (think Cheerios) was shown to have a favorable effect on waist circumference and fasting lipid levels!
This 2010 study examined 204 overweight and obese adults with LDL cholesterol levels of 130 to 200 mg/dL. Participants were divided into 2 groups and asked to follow a reduced calorie dietary program that encouraged portion control and regular physical activity. In addition, one group was asked to consume 2 portions of whole-grain ready-to-eat cereal daily.
Results showed that LDL and Total cholesterol levels were more significantly reduced in the group that ate RTE oat cereal vs. the control group. In addition, though both groups lost about the same amount of weight, the group that ate the oat cereal had a larger decrease in waist circumference than the control group.
So eat your oats – If not for your mother, than for your heart!
If you have high cholesterol or would like some more information on cholesterol lowering foods and supplements please call or stop by Vital Choice Health Store.