Cholesterol - Fruits and Vegetables

Fruits and vegetables against cholesterol

Cholesterol is a substance that can be found in the organism. It is in charge of regulating certain functions such as the formation of bile acids and other hormons.The first recommendation to reduce cholesterol levels is to include foods which are rich in soluble fibre and peptine because they capture the cholesterol in the instestines and eliminates it through the stool. Besides, the food must be rich in polyunsaturated fatty acids because they diminish the cholesterol levels. In the same way food must contain stanols and sterols, which are vegetable compounds that avoid the absorption of cholesterol by the intestines. Finally food must contain anthocyanins, which are favorable for a lower production of cholesterol in the body.

Even though there is no food which contain all these characteristics to reduce cholesterol by itself, it exists a wide variety of food which contribute to lower cholesterol levels and thus should be consumed regularly.

The most helpful fruits and vegetables are avocado, red-orange-blue-purple fruits and green vegetables

Avocado: Consuming daily between half and a whole avocado during the meals can be a very useful mean to decrease cholesterol. Avocado is rich in fibre, which means that the body absorbs less cholesterol. They are also rich in polyunsaturated fatty acids, which reduce the LDL (bad cholesterol) levels. In the same way, avocado is the fruit that contains the most stanols and sterols, which is favorable for a less absorption of cholesterol by the intestines.

Several studies have shown that avocado is good against hypercholesterolemia, it reduces the total cholesterol levels between 9-45% and in the same way the LDL cholesterol is also reduced.

Green Vegetables

Green vegetables such as spinach successfully reduce cholesterol levels specially when the diet is rich in fat because it helps to eliminate a bigger amount of cholesterol through stool. On the the other side green vegetables have a high percentage of stanols and sterols, which avoid a less absorption of cholesterol by the intestines. Broccoli is also benefical to reduce cholesterol because it has high fibre levels.

Red-orange-blue-purple fruits and vegetables:

All fruits and vegetables, which are red, orange, blue or purple color are excellent diminishing LDL cholesterol levels (between 16-25%). These fruits and vegetables contain a high concentration of a pigment called anthocyanin, therefore they are also denominated fruits and vegetables rich in anthocyanins. Some examples include raspberries, blueberries, cherries, cranberries, blackberries, acai berry or the skin of the eggplant. People with high levels of cholesterol are highly recommended to consume 100gr. daily of food rich in anthocyanins.