A Detailed Guide On Low Cholesterol Diet Plan For Beginners
Higher cholesterol levels are known to be a prevalent cause of heart disease, even heart attacks. What are higher cholesterol symptoms, and how does one work on reducing these levels? Low-cholesterol foods that are low in saturated fats help reduce cholesterol levels—looking for a diet plan to reduce cholesterol as a beginner and have no clue what foods to include and what to avoid? You have landed at the right place. In this guide on a low-cholesterol diet plan, we will be looking at high cholesterol levels, their causes and how you can reduce the same with proper diet and other lifestyle changes.
Importance Of A Low Cholesterol Diet
Cholesterol is produced naturally by the human body in quantities that are required for optimal functioning. Higher cholesterol levels cause plaque to build up in the arteries, which makes it difficult for the heart to circulate blood. Buildup in the artery walls also causes blood clots that can lead to a heart attack or a stroke. This makes it essential to follow a low-cholesterol diet to reduce cholesterol levels and stay healthy. It is always advisable to seek professional guidance for cholesterol such that your doctor can prescribe necessary meditation and plan out a customised diet for you. In the following sections, let us look at the causes of high cholesterol and how to reduce cholesterol levels.
Causes Of High Cholesterol
Just like any other health issue, it is always best to understand the causes of high cholesterol for a better understanding of how you can treat the same. An unhealthy lifestyle is the reason for elevated cholesterol levels. Other common causes may include lack of physical activity, excessive weight, smoking, high cholesterol diet and family history of cholesterol. In this section, we will be sharing with you the two major factors that are responsible for higher cholesterol levels- dietary factors and genetic factors.
Dietary factors are some of the major causes of high cholesterol levels in individuals of all age groups. Excessive saturated or trans fats in your diet are some of the major causes of higher cholesterol levels. Saturated fats are found in full-fat dairy products, and fatty cuts of meat and trans fats are found in packaged desserts and snacks. Alcohol consumption and smoking can also be responsible for higher cholesterol levels.
Heredity also plays a role in higher cholesterol levels in some individuals. If you have a family history of cholesterol and issues related to the same, there are higher chances you could be suffering from the same. You could inherit genes from either of your parents or your grandparents that could be a cause of your high cholesterol levels.
How To Reduce Cholesterol
In the previous section, we have looked at what causes higher cholesterol levels. You must now be questioning how to reduce cholesterol levels and stay healthier. Making lifestyle changes is the key to lowering levels of cholesterol. Let us identify how you can incorporate these changes for better results.
The common causes of high cholesterol levels include an inactive lifestyle, lack of exercise and working out, poor dietary choices and more. To help reduce cholesterol levels, you must consider lifestyle changes and incorporating a healthier diet and regular workout schedule into your routine. For higher cholesterol levels, it is advisable to consult your doctor, who might prescribe you the necessary medication for the same. Other than the medications, you can make the following changes to ensure better results:
- Make changes to your diet by limiting the consumption of trans and saturated fats.
- Add more nutrients and fibre to your diet.
- Plan a regular workout schedule and stick to the same to stay more active.
- If you smoke or consume alcohol regularly, it is advisable to reconsider both these practices and reduce the number of cigarettes you smoke and the amount of alcohol you drink.
How Do I Lower Cholesterol With Diet?
In the previous section, we have mentioned multiple times how a diet can help lower cholesterol levels. You must now seek answers to the question, “How do I lower cholesterol with diet?”. There are two ways you can do the same- choosing heart-healthy foods over high-cholesterol options and balancing macronutrients.
Choosing Heart-Healthy Foods
First and foremost, to lower cholesterol levels with diet, you need to make changes to the food that you eat. You need to make healthier choices and pick foods to lower cholesterol. Pick more heart-healthy foods that will ensure that your cholesterol levels are lower, which will also reduce the risk of heart problems.
The following important factor in maintaining cholesterol levels is balancing macronutrients. While you need to avoid trans fats and saturated fats, you need to ensure your diet has healthier unsaturated fats, carbohydrates, proteins, vitamins and minerals, along with added fibre. Your diet should have a proper balance of all these nutrients and also follow portion control for lower cholesterol levels. In the next section, we will be sharing with you some of the foods to lower cholesterol that you can incorporate into your diet.
Foods To Lower Cholesterol
From the previous sections, we know that your diet must be rich in fibre, heart-healthy and balanced to lower your cholesterol. What are some fibre-rich and heart-healthy foods that you should add more of to your diet? Let us help you identify some foods to lower cholesterol to maintain a balanced diet and ensure good heart health.
Oats And Whole Grains
Whole grains like oats are known to provide more fibre, vitamins, minerals and plant compounds. It reduces the risk of heart attack and stroke.
Fruits And Vegetables
Fruits and vegetables contain a soluble fibre- Pectin, that is known to reduce harmful cholesterol levels by at least 10%.
Nuts And Seeds
Nuts and seeds have high healthy fat content that is beneficial for the heart. Consuming nuts and seeds every day reduces cholesterol levels. Seeds and nuts contain phytosterols that prevent the absorption of cholesterol in your intestines.
Omega-3 Fatty Acids
Omega-3 fatty acid is a type of unsaturated fat which is beneficial for heart health and lower cholesterol. It is mainly found in almonds, walnuts, flaxseeds, chia seeds and fish.
Day 1 - Day 7
Here is a 7-day diet plan that includes foods to lower cholesterol for beginners. This diet plan consists of all three meals and snack ideas for you to follow. The key is to stay consistent with this diet and commit to the same for visible results.
This diet plan gives you an idea of some foods that will help you lower cholesterol levels. Based on your cholesterol levels, you must choose the correct portion sizes so as not to overeat but also not go hungry for too long.
With this, we conclude our guide on low-cholesterol diet plans for beginners. In this article, we discussed that lifestyle changes, including fixing your diet, are essential to reducing cholesterol levels. A low-cholesterol diet includes foods that are rich in fibre, which is necessary for your gut health as well. It would help if you avoided high saturated fats while you followed this diet plan. The key to reduced cholesterol levels is staying consistent with your diet plans and committing to them. For better results, it is advisable to consult your healthcare professional and seek a personalised diet plan along with any necessary medication.
Which food reduces cholesterol in 7 days?
Foods that will help you see a significant reduction in cholesterol levels include high-fibre foods, fruits, vegetables, whole grains, fat-free dairy products and lean proteins.
What foods should you cut out of your diet to lower cholesterol?
Some foods that you should cut out of your diet to lower cholesterol are foods that are high in saturated fats, which include red meat. Other foods to avoid are butter, cream, egg yolks and shellfish.
What is the best diet for someone with high cholesterol?
The best diet for someone with high cholesterol is a diet that is high in fibre and low in saturated fats and simple carbohydrates.