Managing your cholesterol levels can be a difficult task, especially if you’re genetically prone to having high cholesterol or struggle with other health underlying health issues. There are many things people can do to help lower their cholesterol, such as exercising more, quitting smoking, limiting their alcohol consumption, taking medications, and adopting healthier eating habits.
There is no “miracle” food that can lower your cholesterol, but making changes in your daily eating habits can help your heart and cholesterol levels overall. And according to Trista Best, MPH, RD, LD at Balance One Supplements, one of the best breakfasts you can eat to help manage or lower your cholesterol is something higher in fiber.
Continue reading to learn more about how starting your morning with fiber can help with your cholesterol, and for more healthy eating tips check out 10 Easy Recipes to Make to Lower Your Cholesterol.
Best warns that many of the popular breakfast foods that we know and love are often very high sugar or protein, but don’t usually have enough fiber.
“Breakfast foods are typically either protein-based or refined carb-based, both of which are lacking in fiber. Unfortunately, these common protein breakfast items are often high in saturated fat and/or cooked in such a way that raises their fat content, negatively impacting cholesterol and heart health. As for the refined carbs that are commonly consumed at breakfast, they include pastries that are highly inflammatory and are ultimately bad for your heart health.”
Best isn’t telling us to avoid protein at breakfast, especially because this is also a vital nutrient to our health and an important one to also get first thing in the day. However, she wants people to be aware that making fiber your priority can significantly help your heart and cholesterol levels.
“Fiber attaches to cholesterol and eliminates it from the body. Unfortunately, most individuals are not consuming enough fiber on a daily basis and not nearly enough to be cardio-protective. Adding fiber to your first meal is an easy way to lower your cholesterol and can be done through whole grains, oatmeal, and high-fiber cereals.”
According to a 2019 report published in Nutrients, fiber has been found to help lower cholesterol levels, specifically soluble fiber. This type of fiber is what can be found in oats, beans, and many fruits like apples and citrus. Because of this, there are plenty of options for incorporating this type of fiber into your breakfast in the morning.
“Continue enjoying your eggs or other protein but add a piece of whole-grain toast rather than a donut or refined white bread. Make a hearty bowl of oatmeal topped with walnuts for protein and berries for antioxidants and sweetness. Keep a high fiber breakfast bar or cereal in your pantry for days when you’re in a rush,” says Best.