The Heart and Stroke Foundation South Africa explains that while everyone has cholesterol in their blood, having too much cholesterol can increase your risk of having a heart attack or a stroke.
If you’re a man older than 45 years, or a woman older than 55 years, you have a higher risk of high cholesterol and heart disease.
Having high cholesterol is a concerning diagnosis, but nothing you should lose sleep over as there are various things you can do to lower your cholesterol levels.
One of the first and easiest interventions for high cholesterol is to watch what you eat. No one likes the idea of cutting favourites like red meat or your morning donut from your diet, but there are other healthier alternatives you can replace these foods with.
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10 foods you should include in your diet if you have high cholesterol:
Dark chocolate is packed with flavonoids due to its high cocoa content. If you have a sweet tooth, this treat will do wonders for your cardiovascular system.
Strawberries contain high levels of polyphenol, a compound that has been linked to lowered risk of heart disease.
Chock full of antioxidants, tomatoes contain lycopene, which is linked to lowering cholesterol.
These berries pack a whopping eight grams of fibre in every cup, which lowers LDL cholesterol levels.
Eight grams of fibre in a single serving of these tasty beans will assist your body in lowering elevated levels of cholesterol.
Pecans are loaded with monounsaturated fatty acids, which are linked to keeping overall cholesterol levels in check.
The fibre and unsaturated fats contained in avocados have been linked to lowering the body’s LDL cholesterol levels.
Leafy greens can help your body produce nitric oxide, which may aid in lowering your cholesterol.
Olives and olive oil
Olives help to prevent inflammation, and the monounsaturated fatty acids contained in their oil may help to improve total cholesterol levels.
The fibre contained in the main ingredient of hummus goes a long way in keeping your heart healthy.
Compiled by Xanet Scheepers