What are some foods that lower cholesterol levels? Here is a list of foods with a lot of cholesterol. Menopausal women tend to worry about their LDL cholesterol levels, which are considered bad. For your health, we recommend an approach from food and drink.
Table of contents
- Why is high cholesterol bad for you?
- Causes of elevated cholesterol levels
- List of foods that lower cholesterol
- Attention! Ranking of foods with high cholesterol
- Dietary tips to improve cholesterol
- Improve your cholesterol levels with dietary changes!
Why is high cholesterol bad for you?
Cholesterol is often treated as the bad guy, but it is actually a nutrient (lipid) that is essential for human life, making up hormones, cell membranes, and bile acids.
70% to 80% of cholesterol is produced in the body, and when the intake from food is high, the amount produced in the body is low, and when the intake from food is low, the amount produced in the body is adjusted. I’m here.
There are two types of cholesterol:
- HDL cholesterol (good cholesterol)
- LDL cholesterol (bad cholesterol)
Too much LDL cholesterol, the bad cholesterol, sticks to the walls of blood vessels and causes arteriosclerosis.
On the other hand, HDL cholesterol, which is good cholesterol, prevents arteriosclerosis by recovering cholesterol attached to the walls of blood vessels.
A condition in which LDL cholesterol and triglycerides are excessively increased and HDL cholesterol is decreased is called dyslipidemia.
Cholesterol ingestion by people with dyslipidemia definitely leads to progression of arteriosclerosis, so caution is required. As arteriosclerosis progresses, it increases the risk of diseases such as myocardial infarction, angina pectoris, cerebral hemorrhage, and cerebral infarction.
Women’s cholesterol intake is increasing year by year
According to the ” Overview of the 2019 National Health and Nutrition Survey Results ” published by the Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare , 12.9% of men and 22.4% of women have serum total cholesterol levels of over 240 mg/dL.
Looking at changes over the past 10 years, there has been little increase or decrease in male cholesterol intake, but in the case of female cholesterol intake has increased year by year.
Menopausal women tend to have higher cholesterol
There may be many adult women who have been pointed out that “cholesterol level is high” in the health checkup. Menopausal women may have elevated cholesterol levels for reasons specific to women.
When the secretion of the female hormone estrogen decreases before and after menopause, changes in the metabolism of LDL cholesterol and triglycerides occur accordingly. Estrogen has the effect of promoting the excretion of LDL cholesterol, and by reducing this, LDL cholesterol levels rise.
There are gender differences in the effects of cholesterol on the body, and the risk of arteriosclerosis in women cannot be measured using the same criteria as in men. Therefore, when considering the prevention of arteriosclerosis, it is important not only to care about cholesterol levels but also to examine the condition of blood vessels.
Whether or not arteriosclerosis is actually progressing can be examined by a carotid artery ultrasound examination, which examines the blood vessels in the neck.
The examination cost of carotid artery echo examination is about 1500 to 2000 yen when the burden is 30%. The test is safe, painless and takes less time.
Causes of elevated cholesterol levels
For women, the rise in cholesterol levels is partly due to the effects of menopause, but it is necessary to be careful not to take too much cholesterol for health reasons. The main causes of elevated cholesterol are:
- high-fat diet
- obesity, overweight
- heredity and constitution
- Effects of menopause
A high-fat diet and obesity are major causes of elevated cholesterol levels.
In addition, genetics and predisposition can affect cholesterol levels. In “familial hypercholesterolemia” caused by heredity, the LDL cholesterol level is high and arteriosclerosis is likely to progress.
If you have a family history of dyslipidemia or a heart attack before the age of 65, you may have familial hypercholesterolemia.
List of foods that lower cholesterol
Here are some foods and drinks that lower cholesterol.
Blue fish are rich in EPA (eicosapentaenoic acid) and DHA (docosahexaenoic acid), which are n-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids (omega-3), which reduce cholesterol and triglycerides and make blood smoother. It works.
EPA and DHA are abundant in blue fish such as tuna, saury, sardines, and mackerel. If you often eat meat in your meals, you should try to eat blue fish instead of meat.
Mushrooms are rich in dietary fiber. The β-glucan contained in mushrooms has many positive effects, such as preventing the absorption of cholesterol in the blood, preventing sudden rises in blood sugar levels, improving immunity, and regulating the intestines.
Mushrooms also help you feel full, which helps prevent overeating and obesity.
Vegetables contain dietary fiber, vitamins and minerals.
Dietary fiber contained in vegetables discharges cholesterol and triglycerides out of the body, so if you want to lower your cholesterol level, eat plenty of vegetables.
Seaweed is also rich in dietary fiber. Water-soluble dietary fiber, which is abundant in seaweed, suppresses the rise in blood sugar levels after meals in the small intestine and has the effect of discharging cholesterol and sodium from the body.
Vegetable oils are composed of unsaturated fatty acids, which help lower cholesterol.
Be careful with fats and oils that contain a lot of linoleic acid, such as margarine. For cooking, we recommend olive oil and sunflower oil, which are rich in oleic acid. If you want to use it as it is, flaxseed oil (linseed oil) rich in omega-3 fatty acids, perilla seed oil, and perilla oil are recommended.
If you want to lower cholesterol in your diet, brown rice is recommended.
There is also a report that as a result of having people with high cholesterol eat 160g or more of brown rice a day for 90 days , blood total cholesterol and LDL (bad) cholesterol levels decreased.
Cholesterol is thought to be excreted by the ingredients contained in brown rice, and since 160g is about the amount of a bowl of rice, you can expect the effect of lowering cholesterol just by replacing one meal a day with brown rice.
Soy protein in soy products has cholesterol-lowering properties.
In addition to protein, soy products contain abundant nutrients such as vitamins and minerals, and there are many foods such as tofu, soy milk, natto, deep-fried tofu, deep-fried tofu, miso, etc., so it is easy to take in every day. is.
Soybean products are representative of ingredients that menopausal women want to take positively, so please try to incorporate them into your daily menu. If you drink soy milk, we recommend unadjusted soy milk that does not contain sweeteners.
Tea catechins, which are abundant in green tea and matcha, have the effect of suppressing the absorption of cholesterol during meals. Green tea contains 8 types of catechins, and among them, ” gallated catechins ” are effective against cholesterol.
Gallated catechins lower bad LDL cholesterol without affecting good HDL cholesterol. In addition, gallate-type catechins have the effect of suppressing the absorption of body fat, and are expected to have not only health and beauty effects, but also diet effects.
In an ongoing survey conducted by the Ito En Central Research Institute, people with high blood cholesterol continued to drink a drink containing about 200 mg of catechins (about three times the amount of regular green tea) twice a day. Afterwards, the blood cholesterol level gradually decreased.
In order to fully ingest catechins, it is recommended to brew green tea in a way that allows plenty of catechins to be extracted .
Other foods containing antioxidants
Incorporating foods containing antioxidants and not increasing LDL cholesterol is the key to lowering cholesterol levels.
- Vitamin C
- Vitamin E
These nutrients should be included in your diet as they have antioxidant properties. Vitamin C is found in fruits and vegetables, and vitamin E in almonds and soybeans.
Polyphenols are abundant in blueberries, green tea, chocolate, etc., and astaxanthin is abundant in seafood such as shrimp, crab, salmon and salmon roe.
Attention! Ranking of foods with high cholesterol
According to the “ Dietary Reference Intakes for Japanese (2020 edition) ” published by the Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare , the recommended amount of cholesterol intake per day should be less than 200mg for the purpose of preventing the aggravation of dyslipidemia. It is considered good.
If you take in too much cholesterol from your diet, it will affect your cholesterol level, so be careful not to overdo it.
Here’s a list of some of the foods with the highest cholesterol levels. (Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology ” Japanese Food Standard Composition Tables 2020 Edition (8th Edition) “)
[Food rich in cholesterol (cholesterol content per 100g)]
- Egg yolk……1400mg
- Monkfish liver (raw)……560mg
- Smoked pork liver……480mg
- Chicken liver…(raw)…370mg
- Pork liver (raw)……250mg
- Beef liver (raw)……240mg
- Cod roe……350mg
- Unsalted butter……350mg
- Cream puff……250mg
As mentioned above, cholesterol is found in large amounts in animal products, especially in viscera and eggs. Be careful not to overdose.
Eggs contain egg yolk lecithin, which has the effect of increasing good cholesterol, and it is said that eating 2-3 eggs a day does not raise cholesterol levels for healthy people, but eggs are medium size. One egg contains 235 mg, which is high in cholesterol.
People with dyslipidemia should be careful, as eggs also contain saturated fatty acids, which have the effect of increasing cholesterol. Since cholesterol levels and constitutions differ from person to person, it is safe to take after consulting with a family doctor.
Dietary tips to improve cholesterol
Here are some dietary tips to improve cholesterol.
Reduce saturated fat intake
Among fats, saturated fatty acids increase LDL cholesterol.
Saturated fatty acids are found in large amounts in animal fats, as well as in meat, butter, fresh cream, pastries, sweets, and curry roux, so you may be consuming too much without realizing it. You can think of it.
get plenty of fiber
The key to lowering cholesterol is to increase cholesterol excretion. Excretion of bile acids, which are the raw materials of cholesterol, also helps reduce cholesterol levels.
Dietary fiber intake is effective for the excretion of bile acids. Dietary fiber is said to have the effect of reducing LDL cholesterol and lowering the risk of myocardial infarction.
Without dietary fiber, cholesterol will be reabsorbed, so it is important to take a good amount of dietary fiber in your daily diet.
refrain from drinking and smoking
Drinking too much alcohol and smoking too many cigarettes can raise LDL cholesterol.
According to the Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare’s ” Health Japan 21 “, the appropriate amount is about 20g of pure alcohol per day. There is no problem if you drink moderately within this range, but it is important to avoid overdrinking.
Incorporate moderate exercise into your life
Regular exercise is also effective in lowering LDL cholesterol. Exercise not only reduces neutral fat around the internal organs, but also leads to fat and sugar metabolism, maintenance and increase of muscle mass.
To prevent lifestyle-related diseases, it is a good idea to do exercise that you can easily incorporate without difficulty, such as walking , at your own pace.
Improve your cholesterol levels with dietary changes!
Cholesterol is an essential substance for human life, but if there is too much bad cholesterol (LDL cholesterol), it causes arteriosclerosis and leads to diseases such as myocardial infarction and cerebral infarction.
Be careful not to eat too many foods that are high in cholesterol.
In order to improve cholesterol levels, it is important to incorporate foods and drinks that promote the reduction of cholesterol levels into your daily diet and to adjust your diet and nutritional balance.