Researchers have found that some foods such as fish, walnuts, oatmeal and foods fortified with plant sterols or stanols can help control cholesterol. Studies have shown that a diet combining some of these “superfoods” may work as well as medicines in lowering your LDL “Bad” cholesterol levels.
How strong is the evidence? The FDA has reviewed the research on each of these foods and has given them the status of a “health claim” for managing your cholesterol through dietary choices.
This is great news for the 105 million adults in the U.S. with high cholesterol. Making good food choices is something everyone can do in ways of preventative and improving health. Making healthier food choices can also put less strain on your pocketbook. A trip to the grocery store with a list of “super foods” is cheaper than a trip to the doctor and pharmacy. Changing your lifestyle and refocusing your diet will help control cholesterol and help maintain optimal health.
If you have high cholesterol, remember to work with your physician. This isn’t a simple DIY project. While changing your diet may help, many people still need the assistance of prescription drugs to reduce the risk of heart disease.
Remember, foods aren’t a cure-all, but a simple and healthy way to rebalance your body. A handful of walnuts or a bowl of oatmeal won’t make you invincible and doesn’t give you a free pass to eat high-fat foods. To reap the benefits of these “super foods”, you will need to make an overall and lasting change to your diet and lifestyle by incorporating low fat foods, physical exams and physical exercise.