Vitamins to Keep Cholesterol at Bay
Too much LDL creates the risk of clogging up your arteries, which can lead to heart failure or stroke; too little HDL will result in the same problem due to inadequate “housekeeping.” Cholesterol lowering vitamins are the key to lowering your bad cholesterol level. These are found in many natural sources of food. All you need to do is keep a watch over your diet and eat right.
Studies measuring the effects of omega-3 fatty acids, found in fish such as tuna, mackerel, salmon and sardines, on HDL indicate that regularly adding fish to your diet anywhere from once a week to every day is a good way to reduce saturated fat intake.
Adding fiber-rich foods such as whole-grain cereals and breads to your diet can also reduce your level of LDL cholesterol. But make sure that every bite is of the most fiber-dense sources you can find, since nutrition experts say that you need between 15 and 30 grams of fiber in your diet to affect cholesterol levels.
Soy products, such as tofu and the texturized vegetable protein often added to ground meat, contain natural plant chemicals called isoflavones. Studies indicate that these chemicals may help flush artery-damaging cholesterol out of your body.
Several studies from researchers at Tufts University in Medford, Massachusetts, indicate that the higher the level of vitamin C in your blood, the higher your HDL level. Blood levels of vitamin C and HDL were tested in 1,372 men and women at Tufts. Those who had the highest levels of vitamin C in their blood had 10 percent more HDL than those with the lowest vitamin C levels.
The rule for cholesterol is simple: Eat less than 300 milligrams a day. The rule for fat is a little more complicated.