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7 Samples of Gourmet Food to Lower Cholesterol
- Oysters can be a good source of heart healthy omega-3 fatty acids
- The garbanzo beans in hummus can lower LDL cholesterol by 5% or more
- Drinking one glass of pinot noir wine per day can lower cholesterol levels significantly
- Sushi provides a wide range of cholesterol lowering benefits
When you see lists of food to lower cholesterol, you’re normally going to see bland stand-bys like oatmeal and walnuts. You may wonder if there is a single gourmet food out there that can help you reduce your heart disease risk while also satisfying your cravings for the finer things in life. Well, there are at least seven which are detailed below.
We all know that oysters have a definite reputation for being aphrodisiacs – a reputation connected to the high levels of zinc and the dopamine they contain – but did you know they can actually lower your cholesterol? They can because they are excellent sources of omega-3 fatty acids which can help increase good cholesterol numbers while improving overall heart health.
This Italian bread dish actually combines a number of cholesterol lowering ingredients. First, start with whole grain breads and add a healthy dose of extra virgin olive oil. Top it off with some chopped tomatoes, red peppers, chopped basil, and other vegetables. Everything in the dish has the power to lower cholesterol. Even the olive oil is high in good for you fats. The best part is that it’s easy to make this heart healthy gourmet food at home.
Today, gourmet foods are expanding to include more international cuisine and hummus is one of the best examples. This spread is commonly consumed in Middle Eastern countries and is made from mashed garbanzo beans mixed with olive oil, garlic, and other spices. While the olive oil is making another appearance here, the real winner in Hummus is the garbanzo beans. One study found that eating these beans caused a drop of almost 5% in LDL cholesterol levels.
4. Specialty Cheeses
Head to the gourmet cheese section of your upscale supermarket and pick up a few: brie, roquefort, gouda, gorgonzola. Studies have shown that women who eat a small amount of cheese daily have higher levels of HDL (good cholesterol) than women who do not. While any cheese will work, the intense taste sensations you’ll find in specialty cheeses are going to provide a more satisfying snacking experience.
5. Dark Chocolate
One of the preferred ingredients in most high end desserts, dark chocolate is developing a healthy reputation thanks to dozens of studies. A recent study found that in people who consumed lower levels of the flavonoids found in high quantity in dark chocolate had greater levels of oxidation in their blood. When LDL is oxidized, this can lead to the development of atherosclerosis which can contribute to narrowing arteries and the risk of heart attacks and strokes. Dark chocolate can reduce oxidation significantly.
6. Pinot Noir
No gourmet meal is complete with a delicious glass of wine. If you’re looking for foods to lower cholesterol, pinot noir wine is the best choice. Grape skin contains a compound called resveratrol which has been shown in studies to lower cholesterol. White wines contain almost none of this compound. However, the pinot noir grapes contain 30 to 40% more resveratrol than any other red wine grapes.
Sushi has become a popular choice in Western culture and is one of the healthiest things you can eat. A common misconception about sushi is that it always contains raw fish. Actually, sushi can contain almost anything you want, including cream cheese, vegetables, and even red meat. The term sushi refers to the type of rice used to make the rolls (it’s stickier rice than traditional white rice). When sushi does contain fish, the fish used is usually high in omega-3 fatty acids which are heart healthy. Sushi is low in cholesterol, too. Plus, sushi is served traditionally with wasabi – a very strong spice that should be mixed with soy sauce before eating. Some studies suggest wasabi can be good for cardiovascular health. It is also served with ginger for cleaning the palette and some research show this root also has cholesterol lowering properties.
The information supplied in this article is not to be considered as medical advice and is for educational purposes only.
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