Top 10 Cholesterol Lowering Foods that Also Lower Triglycerides
It is not uncommon for people who have high triglycerides levels to also be battling higher than desirable levels of LDL (“bad”) cholesterol. Much of the battle fought to control these levels happens on the dinner plate, with diet playing an incredibly important role. Many foods that are found in a low cholesterol diet can also play a part in reducing triglycerides. But, not all of them. There are some cholesterol lowering foods however, that can also have a positive effect on lowering triglycerides. Incorporating more of them as a part of a low cholesterol diet can have an incredibly wide range of positive effects.
Why lower triglycerides? Well because like cholesterol, having too much of them can lead to a greatly increased risk of heart disease. In fact, the risk has between the two has been associated with a thrice greater chance of developing heart disease. Diet is one of the best and easiest ways to lower triglycerides and the method is also useful in lowering cholesterol too. But, because cholesterol and triglycerides are not the same thing, not all foods with have this dual positive effect. Cholesterol is a waxy compound that is made by the body and obtained from foods. Cholesterol is not a fat, while triglycerides are, and are carried in the blood. The differences here may make it seem like cholesterol lowering foods will have little effect on triglycerides levels. But, a handful of foods can not only reduce cholesterol, but lower triglycerides as well. And, increasing the HDL “good” cholesterol in the body is a welcomed side effect of many of these dietary additions.
We have compiled a list of the top ten foods that anyone considering a reduced cholesterol and triglycerides diet should include. They are heart healthy and ideal for reducing the levels of these lipids in the bloodstream.
1. Soy: It may be the staple of the hippy revolution, but soy based foods have a lot to offer in terms of lowering cholesterol and triglycerides. They are a phenomenal protein substitute for higher fat meats and regular consumption can lower levels of the elevated lipids in the blood in as little as a few short weeks.
2. Oatmeal: since eggs are big no-no for anyone looking for low cholesterol options, breakfast time can be challenging. But, oatmeal can step in as a lipid liberator, providing loads of healthy fiber which has been shown to be one of the best cholesterol lowering foods. It also is one of the best foods to boost good HDL cholesterol (which is often lower in people who have high triglycerides). In fact, oatmeal is one of the best good cholesterol foods to enjoy.
3. Fruit: Fruit is an oddity because it provides both benefits yet also potential pitfalls for those with high triglycerides and cholesterol. It does work to reduce both, thanks to the natural fiber it contains. However, the high fructose content can create a spike in triglyceride levels. Fruits should be enjoyed in moderation on a diet to lower triglycerides and perhaps serve as a substitute for sweet treats like cookies and cakes. Consider low fructose options like cantaloupe and strawberries.
4. Beans: Their rich fiber content has been shown to provide a multitude of benefits with regards the lipids in the blood stream. They are natural cholesterol lowering foods, reducing the amount of bad cholesterol in the blood. They also reduce triglyceride levels. Raising good cholesterol is the added bonus boasted by beans, which prove to have a trifecta of heart healthy benefits.
5. Whole Grain Bread: The fiber benefits of whole grain breads are the biggest benefit, but what they replace is an even bigger boost to cardiovascular health. By replacing refined grains like white breads with whole grain options, triglycerides spikes can be reduced and over time, both cholesterol and triglycerides can be reduced.
6. Lentils: Lentils are cholesterol lowering foods because their soluble fiber literally serves as a removal device for the waxy substance. They are considered a heart healthy food and can lower triglycerides and cholesterol as well as provide a boost to HDL levels.
7. Tomatoes: Tomatoes are considered a good part of any healthy diet and they are chock full of lycopene. Studies have shown that the phenols in tomatoes can help raise good cholesterol and reduce triglycerides when consumed regularly.
8. Albacore Tuna: Omega-3 fatty acid foods like albacore tuna have been shown to have incredibly positive effects on the body. So much so in fact that supplements of Omega-3s are often used in the treatment of high cholesterol and triglycerides. Incorporating more Omega-3 fatty acid foods like albacore tuna regularly can prove to have many heart healthy benefits.
9. Salmon: Boasting the same Omega-3 rich benefits as albacore tuna, salmon can be a great addition to any diet. The fishes are considered cholesterol lowering foods and provide nutrients that are difficult to obtain elsewhere. They make a great protein substitute for higher fat meats as well.
10. Walnuts: They are high in fat and so typically not considered a diet food. But walnuts have been shown to be both cholesterol lowering foods and able to lower triglycerides as well. For those who are not keen on adding boatloads of fish to their diet, walnuts can serve as an alternate means of getting Omega-3s. Their consumption in moderation is required, of course.