8 Natural Ways To Help Reduce Cholesterol

Green tea contains several powerful antioxidants that lower cholesterol and perhaps even blood pressure. To make a day’s supply, bring 20 oz water to a boil, drop in three decaffeinated green tea bags, cover, and steep for 10 minutes. Remove the tea bags, and refrigerate the tea. When cool, pour the tea into a container, add ice if you like, and sip throughout the day.

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Fish and fish oil are chockablock with cholesterol-lowering omega-3 fatty acids. “Fish oil supplements can have a profound effect on cholesterol and triglycerides.

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Oats and barley- the soluble fibre that oats and barley contain — called beta-glucan — is particularly powerful. Eating oats with at least 3 grams of soluble fibre every day, for example, can lower LDL and total cholesterol by 5 to 10 percent.

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Beans and other legumes, beans, peas, lentils, and peanuts are also wonderful soluble fibre sources: Every half-cup of cooked lima beans provides 3.5 grams. Consuming a half cup of cooked dried pinto beans (2 grams of soluble fiber) daily for 12 weeks decreased LDL cholesterol by about 7 percent.

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Oils- the unsaturated fats in oils help lower it. Polyunsaturated fats, found primarily in corn, safflower, sesame, soybean, and sunflower oil, slash LDL cholesterol. Monounsaturated fats, found mainly in olive, avocado, and canola oil, not only lower LDL, but may also raise HDL.

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Nuts are another good source of monounsaturated fats. Eating 1 ounce of any kind of nuts daily for one month may lower LDL cholesterol by 8 to 20 percent.

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Grape juice and red wine. Alcohol can raise levels of good HDL cholesterol by as much as 5 to 15 percent, research shows and red wine is particularly beneficial because its polyphenol antioxidants may also lower LDL levels. If you’re not into vino, grape juice can provide some of the same heart-healthy benefits.

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Tomatoes. Known for their cancer-fighting prowess, tomatoes may also help reduce cholesterol. A 2011 meta-analysis of studies published in the journal Maturities revealed that consuming 25 milligrams of lycopene (the antioxidant that gives tomatoes their red pigment) daily can reduce LDL by about 10 percent. But since the research is so new, don’t expect your cardiologist to prescribe spoonfuls of tomato paste just yet.

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