Trying to lower your cholesterol? Changing your diet can help, and (as anyone who has ever tried to start a new diet knows) that change is much easier when your new regime is made up of genuinely tasty meals. Luckily, there are lots of different and delicious kinds of food – and recipes – to lower cholesterol.
We’ve put together five ideas below to start you off. If you’re in the mood for something different, no worries: for even more options to choose from, you can explore our bank of easy cholesterol lowering recipes here.
5 great recipes for cholesterol lowering foods
When you’re lowering cholesterol, the recipes you’ll be looking for are usually those that fit in well with a healthy, balanced diet, but that’s not the only thing to consider. Meals that can help you eat cholesterol lowering foods (recipes containing plant sterols, for example*) are also a good bet, as well as those that can help you get more good fats and fewer bad fats in your diet**.
All the recipes below contain Flora ProActiv spreads, which have added plant sterols. If you’re not trying to lower your cholesterol, use normal Flora spread instead.
This delicious meal works well as a weekday evening meal paired with fresh salad or new potatoes. Lemon or orange juice slices are added to the sardines along with bay leaves, garlic, and parsley to make up a plate of big punchy flavours.
The bonus: Good fats galore. Like most oily fish, sardines are a great source of healthy unsaturated fats, which – when used to replace saturated fat – can help lower cholesterol**. They’re also high in the famously heart-friendly omega-3 fatty acids***. Meanwhile, the recipe as a whole contains 1.1g plant sterols per portion.
Want a cholesterol lowering recipe you can take on the go? This enticing salad is a brilliant way to make work colleagues jealous, combining quinoa with almonds, dried apricots, pomegranate seeds, and pepper. Dress with vinegar and lemon zest, then eat with garlic bread. Flora ProActiv Buttery spread is ideal for home-made garlic bread: spread onto wholemeal rolls with crushed garlic before roasting until brown.
The bonus: Good fats and protein. Quinoa is the only ‘complete’ source of protein from plants, making it a good replacement for animal-based proteins that have a lot of saturated fat in them. Like many nuts, almonds are an excellent source of unsaturated fat. The recipe as a whole contains 0.75g plant sterols.
When we think of foods to lower cholesterol and the recipes that use them, we don’t always think about pudding. But while lots of sweet dishes are high in saturated fat and sugar, eating healthily doesn’t mean avoiding everything sweet. This recipe is excellent after dinner. Two cooking apples are baked with ginger, dates and orange zest to create a real burst of flavours.
The bonus: One of your five-a-day. As we all know, it’s important to eat at least five portions of fruit or veg a day. Eating fruit for pudding instead of cakes or biscuits is a great way to meet this target, while spicing it up with different flavours will stop you getting bored. Plus, there’s 1g of plant sterols per portion.
Another delicious dish for one of the tastiest oily fish around. Mackerel has some feisty flavours, and with the addition of a rich red Moroccan-style spice blend, this recipe has a real wow-factor. With prep taking 15 minutes, it can be on the table in just under half an hour, making it great for those days when you want a great meal fast.
The bonus: Good fats, great flavour. Mackerel is a great source of good fats. Like sardines, there’s omega-3 too, while Flora ProActiv Buttery brings 0.75g plant sterols per portion.
A moreish dish with a fresh chilli kick to it, this crab linguine plays on the classic flavours of garlic, lemon, and parsley. It’s perfect with a fresh, leafy green salad. Buy fresh pasta to bring the cooking time down to just 15 minutes.
The bonus: Low fat meat. Crab is very low fat, with just 1g of fat per 100g. This makes it a good option if you’re trying to eat less saturated fat, freeing up more space in your diet for the good types of fat. Make this with wholemeal pasta to get more fibre in there alongside the 1.1g of plant sterols.
*Flora ProActiv contains plant sterols. A daily intake of 1.5 – 2.4g sterols can lower cholesterol by 7 – 10% in 2 – 3 weeks as part of a healthy diet and lifestyle including plenty of fruits and vegetables. High cholesterol is a risk factor in the development of coronary heart disease. As coronary heart disease has many risk factors, more than one may need to be improved to reduce overall risk. Individual results may vary.
**Replacing saturated fats with unsaturated fats in the diet has been shown to lower blood cholesterol.
***A daily intake of 2.5g EPA and DHA omega 3 combined can contribute to the normal function of the heart.