If your diet gave your high cholesterol, it can lower it too. In order for it to do so requires a two-way strategy: Add foods that lower LDL, the cholesterol carrying particle, and at same time, cut back on foods that boost it.
Add foods that deliver soluble fiber, which binds cholesterol and its precursors in the digestive system and drags them out of the body before they get into circulation. Polyunsaturated fats, which directly lower LDL, are also important. Here is a sampling of foods that lower cholesterol:
Oats. Have a bowl of oatmeal or cold oat-based cereal such as Cheerios for breakfast. It gives you 1 to 2 grams of soluble fiber.
Barley and other whole grains. Barley and other whole grains can help lower the risk of heart disease, mainly via the soluble fiber they deliver.
Beans. Beans are especially rich in soluble fiber. They also take a while for the body to digest.
Eggplant and okra. These two low-calorie vegetables are good sources of soluble fiber.
Nuts. Studies show that eating nuts is good for the heart. Eating 2 ounces of nuts a day can slightly lower LDL.
Vegetable oils. Using liquid vegetable oils such as canola, sunflower, safflower and others when cooking or at the table helps lower LDL.
Apples, grapes, strawberries, citrus fruits. These fruits are rich in pectin, a type of soluble fiber that lowers LDL.