Learn 10 Tips To Reduce Cholesterol With Your Diet

We are talking about a waxy substance produced by the liver and obtained by eating animal products such as meat, dairy and eggs.

Your liver will make less cholesterol if you consume a large amount of this substance from food, so cholesterol in your diet rarely has a large impact on total cholesterol levels .

However, eating large amounts of saturated fat, trans fat, and sugars can raise cholesterol levels.

Keep in mind that there are different types of cholesterol.

While HDL “good” cholesterol can be beneficial to your health, high levels of LDL “bad” cholesterol, particularly when oxidized, have been linked to an increased risk of heart disease, heart attack, and stroke .

This is because oxidized LDL cholesterol is more likely to stick to the walls of the arteries and form plaques that clog these blood vessels.

10 Tips to Lower Cholesterol with Your Diet and Help Reduce Your Risk of Heart Disease

1. Eat foods rich in soluble fiber

Soluble fiber is found in high amounts in beans, legumes, whole grains, flax, apples, and citrus.

Humans lack the proper enzymes to break down soluble fiber, so it moves through your digestive tract, absorbing water and forming a thick paste.

As it travels, soluble fiber absorbs bile, a substance made by the liver to help digest fats. Eventually, both the fiber and attached bile are excreted in the stool.

Bile is made of cholesterol, so when your liver needs to make more bile it pulls cholesterol out of your bloodstream, which naturally lowers cholesterol levels.

Regular consumption of soluble fiber is associated with a 5-10% reduction in total cholesterol and “bad” LDL cholesterol in just four weeks.

Eating at least 5-10 grams of soluble fiber daily is recommended for maximum cholesterol-lowering effects, but benefits have been seen with even lower intakes of 3 grams per day.


Soluble fiber lowers cholesterol by preventing the reabsorption of bile in the intestine, which leads to the excretion of bile in the stool. Your body pulls cholesterol out of your bloodstream to make more bile, thereby lowering the levels.

2. Enjoy lots of fruits and vegetables

Eating fruits and vegetables is an easy way to lower LDL cholesterol levels.

Studies show that adults who eat at least four servings of fruits and vegetables a day have LDL cholesterol levels about 6% lower than people who eat fewer than two servings a day.

Fruits and vegetables also contain a large amount of antioxidants, which prevent the oxidation of LDL cholesterol and the formation of plaques in the arteries.

Together, these antioxidant and cholesterol-lowering effects can lower your risk of heart disease.

Research has found that people who eat the most fruits and vegetables have a 17% lower risk of developing heart disease over a 10-year period compared to people who eat the least.


Eating at least four servings of fruits and vegetables daily can lower LDL cholesterol levels and reduce LDL oxidation, which can lower your risk of heart disease.

3. Cook with herbs and spices

Herbs and spices are nutritional powerhouses packed with vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants.

Human studies have shown that garlic, turmeric, and ginger are especially effective in lowering cholesterol when consumed regularly.

In fact, eating just one clove of garlic per day for three months is enough to lower total cholesterol by 9%.

In addition to lowering cholesterol, herbs and spices contain antioxidants that prevent the oxidation of LDL cholesterol, reducing the formation of plaques within the arteries.

Although herbs and spices are not typically eaten in large quantities, they can contribute significantly to the total amount of antioxidants consumed each day.

Dried oregano, sage, mint, thyme, cloves, allspice, and cinnamon contain some of the highest levels of antioxidants, as well as fresh herbs such as oregano, marjoram, dill, and cilantro.


Fresh and dried herbs and spices can help lower cholesterol levels. They contain antioxidants that prevent the oxidation of LDL cholesterol.

4. Eat a variety of unsaturated fats

Two main types of fats are found in food:

  • The saturated ones.
  • The unsaturated ones.

On a chemical level, saturated fats contain no double bonds and are very straight, allowing them to clump together tightly and stay solid at room temperature.

Unsaturated fats contain at least one double bond and have a folded shape, preventing them from binding so tightly. These attributes make them liquid at room temperature.

Research shows that replacing most saturated fats with unsaturated fats can lower total cholesterol by 9% and “bad” LDL cholesterol by 11% in just eight weeks.

Longer-term studies have also found that people who eat more unsaturated fat and less saturated fat tend to have lower cholesterol levels over time.

Foods like avocados, olives, fatty fish, and nuts contain heart-healthy unsaturated fats, so it is beneficial to eat them regularly.


Eating more unsaturated fat and less saturated fat has been linked to lower total cholesterol and “bad” LDL levels over time. Avocados, olives, fatty fish, and nuts are especially high in unsaturated fats.

5. Avoid artificial trans fats

While trans fats occur naturally in red meat and dairy products, the main source for most people is the artificial trans fat used in many restaurants and processed foods.

Artificial trans fats are produced by hydrogenating or adding hydrogen to unsaturated fats such as vegetable oils to change their structure and solidify them at room temperature.

Trans fats are a cheap alternative to natural saturated fats and have been widely used by restaurants and food manufacturers.

However, substantial research shows that eating artificial trans fat raises “bad” LDL cholesterol, lowers “good” HDL cholesterol, and is linked to a 23% increased risk of heart disease.

Watch out for the words “partially hydrogenated” to appear on ingredient lists. This term indicates that the food contains trans fat and should be avoided.

The naturally occurring trans fats found in meat and dairy products can also increase LDL cholesterol. However, they are present in small enough amounts that they are not generally considered a great health risk.


Artificial trans fats are linked to higher levels of LDL cholesterol and an increased risk of heart disease.

6. Eat less added sugars

Not only saturated and trans fats can raise cholesterol levels. Eating too many added sugars can do the same.

One study found that adults who consumed 25% of their calories from beverages made with high fructose corn syrup experienced a 17% increase in LDL cholesterol in just two weeks.

Even more concerning, fructose increases the number of small, dense oxidized LDL cholesterol particles that contribute to heart disease.

According to a 14-year study, these people were almost three times more likely to die from heart disease than those who got less than 10% of their calories from added sugars.

It has been recommended to eat no more than 100 calories (25 grams) of additional sugar per day for women and children, and no more than 150 calories (37.5 grams) per day for men.

You can meet these goals by carefully reading labels and choosing products without added sugar whenever possible.


Getting more than 25% of your daily calories from added sugars can raise your cholesterol levels and more than double your risk of dying from heart disease. Reduce it by choosing foods with no added sugars as much as possible.

7. Enjoy a Mediterranean-style diet

One of the easiest ways to incorporate the above lifestyle changes is to follow a Mediterranean-style diet.

Mediterranean diets are rich in olive oil, fruits, vegetables, nuts, whole grains, and fish, and low in red meat and most dairy products. Alcohol, usually in the form of red wine, is consumed in moderation with meals.

Since this eating style includes many cholesterol-lowering foods and avoids many cholesterol-raising foods, it is considered very heart-healthy.

In fact, research has shown that following a Mediterranean-style diet for at least three months reduces LDL cholesterol by an average of 8.9 mg per deciliter (dL).

It also reduces the risk of heart disease by up to 52% and the risk of death by up to 47% when followed for at least four years.


Mediterranean foods are rich in fruits, vegetables, herbs, spices, fiber, and unsaturated fats. Following this type of diet can lower cholesterol levels and lower your risk of heart disease.

8. Eat more soy

Soy is rich in protein and contains isoflavones, plant-based compounds that are similar in structure to estrogen.

Research has found that soy protein and isoflavones have powerful cholesterol-lowering effects and can lower your risk of heart disease.

In fact, eating soybeans every day for at least a month can increase “good” HDL cholesterol by 1.4 mg / dL and lower “bad” LDL cholesterol by about 4 mg / dL.

Less processed forms of soy, such as soy or soy milk, are probably more effective at lowering cholesterol than processed soy protein extracts or supplements.


Soy contains plant-based proteins and isoflavones that can lower LDL cholesterol levels, reducing the risk of heart disease when eaten regularly.

9. Drink green tea

Green tea is prepared by heating and drying the leaves of the Camellia sinensis plant.

Tea leaves can be steeped in water to make tea or ground into powder and mixed with liquid for matcha green tea.

A review of 14 studies found that consuming green tea daily for at least two weeks reduces total cholesterol by approximately 7 mg / dL and “bad” LDL cholesterol by approximately 2 mg / dL.

Animal studies show that green tea can lower cholesterol by reducing the production of LDL in the liver and increasing its removal from the bloodstream.

Green tea is also rich in antioxidants, which can prevent LDL cholesterol from oxidizing and forming plaques in the arteries.

Drinking at least four cups a day provides the most protection against heart disease, but enjoying just one cup a day can reduce your risk of heart attack by nearly 20%.


Drinking at least one cup of green tea per day can lower LDL cholesterol levels and reduce your risk of heart attack by almost 20%.

10. Try cholesterol-lowering supplements

In addition to diet, some supplements can help lower cholesterol levels naturally:

  • Niacin : Daily supplements of 1-6 grams of niacin can lower LDL cholesterol levels by up to 19% in one year. However, it can cause side effects and should only be taken under medical supervision.
  • Psyllium husk : Psyllium husk, rich in soluble fiber, can be mixed with water and consumed daily to lower cholesterol. Research has found that psyllium husk supplements cholesterol-lowering medications.
  • L-carnitine : L-carnitine lowers LDL levels and reduces oxidation in people with diabetes. Taking 2 grams per day for three months can lower oxidized cholesterol levels five times more than a placebo.

Always check with your doctor before starting a new diet or supplement regimen.


Supplements such as niacin, psyllium husk, and L-carnitine can help lower cholesterol levels, but check with your doctor before taking them.

The bottom line

High levels of “bad” LDL cholesterol, especially small, dense oxidized LDL, have been linked to an increased risk of heart disease.

Diet changes, such as eating more fruits and vegetables, cooking with herbs and spices, consuming soluble fiber, and loading unsaturated fats, can help lower cholesterol levels and reduce these risks.

Avoid ingredients that increase LDL cholesterol, like trans fats and added sugars, to keep cholesterol in healthy ranges.

Certain foods and supplements like green tea, soy, niacin, psyllium husk, and L-carnitine can also lower cholesterol levels.

In general, many small dietary changes can significantly improve your cholesterol levels.