9 Drinks That Reduce Your Cholesterol Levels
Have you ever gained weight and had a hard time shedding it off? It’s probably because of your cholesterol. If you are in this position right now, you better get a check-up and drink these to lower your cholesterol levels.
Signs and Symptoms of High Cholesterol Levels
The waxy substance that the body uses to make hormones and cells is cholesterol. There are two kinds of cholesterol in our body; high-density lipoprotein, or HDL, and low-density lipoprotein, or LDL. Severe health conditions like stroke or heart attacks are possible when these levels are high.
Cholesterol screening must be done every one or two years for men ages 45 to 65 years old and women ages 55 to 65 years old. While those ages 65 and over must have cholesterol check-ups every year. Now, what are the common signs of increased cholesterol levels?
- Increased blood pressure
- Chest pain
- Numbness or coldness in your extremities
- Shortness of breath
- Extreme fatigue
- Pain in the jaw, neck, upper abdomen, and back
Drinks That Reduce Cholesterol Levels
We cannot remove cholesterol in the body, but you have the option to decrease their levels. Here are drinks that can help you with that:
Generally, tea is great for our bodies. As the first one on our list, green tea is rich in antioxidants and catechins, which help keep the LDL or the “bad” cholesterol at bay. Black tea is also one of the best teas you can drink to help lower the cholesterol in the body. They work the same but not as much as green tea. In addition to that, tea contains caffeine, which helps raise HDL levels.
Surprisingly, tomato juice has a good amount of lycopene, an antioxidant protecting cell damage. Tomatoes also have niacin and fibers that reduce cholesterol. Drinking 280ml of tomato juice daily for at least two months can help improve your cholesterol levels.
Naturally, soy milk is low in saturated fat. The FDA recommends drinking 25 grams of soy protein as part of your diet to help reduce cholesterol levels and the risk of heart disease. Drinking 250 ml of soy milk daily and adding soy-based food to your diet can also help you.
Oat milk is an excellent source of beta-glucans that can create a gel-like layer in the intestines when interacting with bile salts. This substance can help reduce the absorption of cholesterol. A cup of oat milk provides your body with 1.3gm of beta-glucan.
Berries or berry smoothies
Berries are rich in antioxidants and fiber, which help reduce cholesterol levels in the body. Anthocyanins are also found in berries, which are also helpful in keeping cholesterol levels low. Adding low-fat milk or yogurt to your smoothie makes a good combination for reducing cholesterol. Berries that you should include in your diet are strawberries, raspberries, blueberries, and blackberries.
Cocoa-rich food or Drinks
Antioxidants called flavanol are naturally found in cocoa. This antioxidant helps reduce the harmful cholesterol levels in your body. Dark chocolate, in particular, is rich in flavanols which help improve cholesterol levels. It also contains monosaturated fatty acids. About 450mg of cocoa added to your diet daily can also help. Make sure to avoid eating processed chocolates to keep your cholesterol levels low.
Before you say alcohol is bad for your health, you must understand how it can help reduce your cholesterol levels. Moderate alcohol intake can increase HDL levels in the blood. One of the best alcohols to consume is red wine. This alcoholic beverage not only lowers cholesterol but also prevents heart disease.
Of course, heavy drinking can lead to increased harmful cholesterol levels. However, it is recommended that women drink one alcoholic beverage per day while two for men.
Drinks with Stanols and Sterols
Stanols and sterols are plant chemicals that help block the absorption of some cholesterol. Fortified food and drinks like yogurts, fruit, and fruit juices are also packed with sterols and stanols. The Food and Drug Administration recommends consuming 1.3g or more sterols and 3.4g of stanols daily.
Smoothies with kale, bananas, melons, and pumpkins are beneficial drinks that reduce your cholesterol levels in the body. Adding oat milk can even make it better.
Avoid drinking cream-based drinks, teas with cream, whipped cream, creamer, or high-fat milk. Drinks with pressed coconut, ice cream-based drinks, coffee with added cream, and coconut or palm oils smoothies trigger high cholesterol levels.
Drinking more than 12 ounces of sugary drinks can also increase your cholesterol levels and increase triglyceride levels or levels of fat in the bloodstream.