A new study has found that nutrition, not pharmaceutical cholesterol drugs, are the most effective means of lowering “bad” cholesterol levels. While it has been established that cholesterol is not always a powerful indicator of heart health, the study does add to the mountain of scientific and anecdotal evidence that natural foods are thousands of times more effective than pharmaceuticals.
The Los Angeles Times reports:
Nearly 1 in 6 Americans has a high overall cholesterol level, which makes a person nearly twice as likely to suffer a heart attack or stroke as someone whose total cholesterol falls into a healthy range. Low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol is one component of this overall number.
Last year, statin and other lipid-regulating drugs were the nation’s most commonly prescribed medications, with more than 355 million prescriptions dispensed, according to the healthcare information firm IMS Health.
The multi-center Canadian study tested a diet that contained a portfolio of cholesterol-fighting foods such as soy protein, nuts, “sticky” fiber such as that found in oats and barley, and plant sterols. Subjects were instructed to eat a handful of nuts such as almonds or walnuts every day, and to substitute milk and meats with soy and tofu products as much as possible.