Cholesterol is found in every cell of the body and has important natural functions. It is manufactured by the body but can also be taken in from food. This waxy substance is produced by the liver and is needed to make vitamin D and some important hormones, build cell walls, and create bile salts that help you digest Fat.
Zero Cholesterol Foods: What Does It Mean?
Many foods trumpet themselves as being ‘zero cholesterol’ or ‘cholesterol free’. That’s an easy claim to make. The main sources of dietary cholesterol are animal foods that don’t carry nutrition facts labels, such as: organ meats, fish, eggs, shellfish etc. Milk is also a source of cholesterol.
All foods coming from plant origin are zero cholesterol foods. For example-
- All vegetables and salads
- All fruits and dry fruits
- All nuts and oil seeds
- All grains
- All pulses and legumes
- All roots and tubers
Including these zero cholesterol foods in your diet is healthy for your heart! Always read the food labels before you buy any food. Check for ingredients and cholesterol content. But be cautious!
Some zero cholesterol food labels are misleading in a way. Foods loaded with saturated fat or trans fats can claim they contain zero cholesterol, but they’re actually more of a threat to your heart and arteries than foods with a little cholesterol and less saturated fat. On the other hand, some foods such as fatty fish though contain cholesterol, are heart friendly!
So, be judicious, talk to your nutritionists and doctors if you have high cholesterol levels.
Overall, a well balanced diet and regular physical activity are important to everyone for maintaining optimum cholesterol levels and stay young heart!