This way of eating lowers your levels of bad and raises your levels of good cholesterol. Having too much bad and not enough good can lead to atherosclerosis. This is when plaque builds up in your arteries. This thins and hardens them. It also raises your risk of having a heart attack or stroke.
Cholesterol is one cause that plays into your risk of having a heart attack, heart disease, or stroke. Others are:
Eating this way may help if you are at high risk. The goal is to lower bad and raise good cholesterol.
Making changes to how you eat may help to lower your cholesterol.
Fat has many jobs. It carries fat soluble vitamins , protects organs, and makes you feel full. Fat can be broken down into four types:
Fats that should be not eaten or eaten in small amounts:
Found in margarine and shortening, snack foods, and fried foods, it raises total blood cholesterol, chiefly bad the bad type.
Hydrogenated or trans fat
Found in margarine and shortening, it raises total blood cholesterol, chiefly the bad type. It also lowers the good type.
Fats that help and should be eaten in moderation:
Found in oils such as olive and canola, it can lower total cholesterol level while keeping levels of the good type high.
Found in oils such as safflower, sunflower, soybean, corn, and sesame, it can lower total cholesterol.
Less than 5-6% of calories should come from saturated fat. Trans fat intake should be kept very low with a goal to remove them.
If you eat 2,000 calories a day, this is less than 13 grams of saturated fat per day. Most of the fats you eat should be mono- and polyunsaturated.
This is found only in animal products. It can raise bad levels, but saturated or trans fats are worse. You should eat as little as you can.
Eating foods that are high in soluble fiber can help lower your bad levels. There are two types of fiber: soluble and insoluble. Both are vital, but only soluble changes cholesterol levels. It breaks down into a gel that helps block fat and cholesterol in the blood.
It is found in foods such as oatmeal, oat bran, barley, soy products, apples, and strawberries. You should eat at least 5-10 grams per day. It's even better if you can eat 10-25 grams.
Stanols and sterols are found in certain plants. Plant stanols and sterols can lower bad levels by blocking them. They are now being added to foods like margarines and orange juice.
|Food||Foods to Eat||Foods to Not Eat|
|Meat and beans|
|Fats and oil|
|Snacks, sweets, and condiments|
Try all kinds foods and make changes based on what you like to eat. It may take some time to get used to new changes.
Eat Right—Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics
National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute
Dietitians of Canada
Heart and Stroke Foundation of Canada
Dietary guidelines for Americans 2015-2020. Choose My Plate—US Department of Agriculture website. Available at: https://www.choosemyplate.gov/2015-2020-dietary-guidelines-answers-your-questions. Updated January 7, 2016. Accessed October 1, 2018.
About cholesterol. American Heart Association website. Available at: http://www.heart.org/HEARTORG/Conditions/Cholesterol/AboutCholesterol/About-Cholesterol_UCM_001220_Article.jsp. Updated April 30, 2017. Accessed October 1, 2018.
Dietary guidelines for Americans 2010. US Department of Agriculture and US Department of Health and Human Services. Available at: http://www.health.gov/dietaryguidelines/dga2010/DietaryGuidelines2010.pdf. Accessed October 1, 2018.
Dietary interventions for cardiovascular disease prevention. EBSCO DynaMed Plus website. Available at:http://www.dynamed.com/topics/dmp~AN~T115449/Dietary-considerations-for-cardiovascular-disease-prevention. Updated September 11, 2017. Accessed October 1, 2018.
Eckel RH, Jakicic JM, et al. 2013 AHA/ACC guideline on lifestyle management to reduce cardiovascular risk: a report of the American College of Cardiology/American Heart Association Task Force on Practice Guidelines. Circulation. 2014;129(25 Suppl 2):S76-S99.
Goff DC Jr. Lloyd-Jones DM, et al. 2013 ACC/AHA guideline on the assessment of cardiovascular risk: a report of the American College of Cardiology/American Heart Association Task Force on Practice Guidelines. Circulation. 2014;63(25 pt B):2935-2959.
Harland JI. Food combinations for cholesterol lowering. Nutr Res Rev. 2012;25(2):249-266.
Hypercholesterolemia. EBSCO DynaMed Plus website. Available at:http://www.dynamed.com/topics/dmp~AN~T114250/Hypercholesterolemia. Updated September 20, 2018. Accessed October 1, 2018.
The skinny on fats. American Heart Association website. Available at: http://www.heart.org/HEARTORG/Conditions/Cholesterol/PreventionTreatmentofHighCholesterol/Know-Your-Fats_UCM_305628_Article.jsp#.V9ll9DVuMpk. Updated April 30, 2017. Accessed October 1, 2018.
Lowering your cholesterol with TLC. National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute website. Available at: http://www.nhlbi.nih.gov/health/public/heart/chol/chol_tlc.pdf. Published December 2005. Accessed October 1, 2018.
What your cholesterol levels mean. American Heart Association website. Available at: http://www.heart.org/HEARTORG/Conditions/Cholesterol/AboutCholesterol/What-Your-Cholesterol-Levels-Mean_UCM_305562_Article.jsp. Updated April 30, 2017. Accessed October 1, 2018.
Last reviewed September 2018 by EBSCO Medical Review Board Dianne Scheinberg Rishikof MS, RD, LDN Last Updated: 10/1/2018