Did you know that in Singapore, about 17 people die from cardiovascular disease (heart diseases and stroke) daily? In 2019, cardiovascular disease alone accounted for 29.3% of all deaths. This means that stroke or heart diseases are the cause of 1 out of 3 deaths.


Decades of research have shown that diet and cholesterol play an important role in heart health. The increase in the risks of heart diseases is often linked to high cholesterol levels (especially LDL, commonly known as the “bad cholesterol”) and triglycerides. If you wish to lower and improve your cholesterol levels, here are 5 foods that can help.


1. Avocado:


Avocado is excellent for lowering cholesterol and triglycerides as it is packed with monounsaturated fats and fibre. These two nutrients are known to help lower “bad cholesterol” (LDL) and raise “good cholesterol” (HDL). Many studies showed that substituting avocados for other fats is linked to lower total cholesterol, LDL and triglycerides.



2. Fruits and Berries:


Just like avocados, many types of fruit are rich in soluble fibre, which are beneficial in lowering cholesterol levels. Especially fruits which contain a kind of soluble fibre called pectin, it can lower cholesterol by up to 10%. Pectin can be found in apples, grapes, citrus fruits and strawberries. Berries and grapes are particularly rich sources of pectin and can help increase HDL and lower LDL.



3. Nuts:


Nuts such as cashew and walnuts are rich in unsaturated fats, which help to clear LDL and increase HDL. They are also great snacks as they help in prolonging satiety and curb overeating.



4. Fatty Fish:


Eating fatty fish such as salmon and mackerel which contain long-chain omega-3 fatty acids can also help improve your good cholesterol. Omega-3s are well known for bolstering heart health by increasing HDL, lowering inflammation and stroke risk.




5. Olive Oil:


Olive oil is also another rich source of unsaturated fats and vitamin E, which acts as an antioxidant and helps to  lower LDL.



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