While modern medicine certainly seems to have a pill for nearly everything, we still have several natural, self-help options, including multiple diet plans to help lower cholesterol. Yes, multiple! Everyone has individual preferences when it comes to foods… some love seafood while others prefer red meat.
When you’re contemplating the best diet to choose for lowering cholesterol, you need to take a few things into consideration:
” Budget – can you afford this way of eating?
” Availability of foods – are these foods readily available to you?
” Taste buds – Do these foods make you want to continue with this way of eating?
Each of these three components are important, but that last one is the kicker. If you can tick that box, you’ll find a way to make it work for the first two. Where there’s a will there’s a way… but if you don’t even like the foods, you’ll give up before you even get started. It’s common sense.
So choose a diet to help lower your cholesterol that you believe you can stick with until you reach the finish line. And then some. You didn’t get your cholesterol all out of whack overnight, and it’s going to take some time to knock it back into shape.
Here are a few diet plans that help lower cholesterol and are worth considering:
This diet is fun, spicy and you get to keep the grains! It’s delicious and healthy and is excellent for people who prefer fish and poultry over red meat.
” Eat plenty of plant-based foods.
” Switch to whole grains.
” Nuts are the thing! All natural though; not the salted or sugared kind. Try the spreads too!
” Kick it up a notch! Toss the salt out the window and use spices and herbs.
” Fish and poultry should be the meat of choice. Red meat on rare occasions.
” Hey, you can even have bread! Whole grain, of course. Skip the butter or margarine and dip it in olive oil, or try a nut spread.
See, simple and still delicious with tons of ways to make this diet workable to help lower your cholesterol.
Low Carb Diet
The Low Carb Diet is a little more strict, but in reality you basically get to choose how many you get and where your carbs come from… unless it’s starchy carbs, those are a really bad idea. The idea is to keep your caloric intake the same, without going over your daily limit in carbs.
If you drop the carbs without adding those calories back into your diet, that’s asking for trouble, and it will be difficult to maintain. First, set a calorie goal and a carb limit.
” Starchy carbs contain sugar and the fuel is useless. You’ll crash and burn. Just say no to all things white. Bread, rice, and potatoes are the main foods that come to mind.
” Fruit also has major carbs. Again, it’s the sugar. Make sure you look it up before you eat it. You are going to be shocked! Go ahead, look up a banana. Over 20 carbs!
” Basically you need to look at the label of every single thing you eat. Gum usually has a single carb per piece. Gelcap vitamins have a single carb. Carbs are EVERYWHERE!
” Be vigilant not to replace all of your carb calories you are cutting with nasty fats. Lean protein is your friend.
The Low Carb Diet to lower cholesterol is a little less forgiving than the Mediterranean Diet, however, the results are a little quicker when done right.
The Ketogenic Diet
Last but not least, the master of all diets, the Ketogenic Diet! It might be the most restrictive and least forgiving, but if you can get it down and not cheat, you will be in awe of the results.
” Eat only up to your recommended macronutrient (protein, fats, carbs) goals each daily.
” Eat lean proteins, good fats and leafy greens for veggies.
” All carbs are not equal on this diet. Stay clear of all things white, starchy, fried, fatty and anything that will cause you guilt.
” Log everything. Seriously. Every meal. Every bottle of water. There’s an app for that. It helps!
This one seems tough, but when you get into the routine it’s simple. Food becomes fuel. Your mindset changes. It’s a beautiful thing!
No matter the diet you choose to help lower cholesterol, please make sure to also get regular checkups to make sure you are achieving the results you seek.
Sometimes adjustments need to be made, especially with these last two diets regarding the fats. All three work, but all three aren’t for everyone. Do your homework. You’re about to make a major diet change to help lower cholesterol! You should at least enjoy the journey!