Top 8 Cholesterol-Lowering Foods

From oats to walnuts, a handful of everyday foods are stepping up to the plate when it comes to battling unhealthy cholesterol.  By: Maureen Callahan, MS, RD

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Flaxseed
Photo: Lee Harrelson

Flaxseed

Rich in plant-based omega-3 fats, both flaxseed and flaxseed oil are used to reduce total cholesterol and LDL, or “bad” cholesterol. Studies are limited, however, and results are mixed. Still, one recent report suggests the cholesterol-lowering abilities of this little brown seed are more pronounced in men, lowering their cholesterol level nearly 10%. And many use the seed to promote good digestion and relieve constipation. And just one tablespoon of ground flax contains 16 grams of omega-3 fats. For women, preliminary research hints that 10 to 30 grams of flaxseed (about 1 to 4 tablespoons) may offer some protection against breast cancer.

How much is good? Experts aren’t making any firm recommendations, but 1 to 2 tablespoons per day seems like a good place to start. Keep in mind, seeds need to be ground in order to be digested.

See more: 7 Healthy and Delicious Seeds

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