Causes of High Cholesterol and Fruits to Lower It

Cholesterol is a substance that is produced naturally by the liver, but can also be found in foods of animal origin, such as meat and milk. Cholesterol is needed by the body to form healthy cells, produce a number of hormones, and produce vitamin D. Although important for the body, cholesterol can be detrimental to health if levels are too high.

High cholesterol does not cause symptoms. As a result, many people do not realize they have high cholesterol levels, until serious complications such as heart disease or stroke arise. Therefore, it is important to do blood tests to find out normal or high cholesterol.

To find out normal cholesterol levels, you need to first understand the types of cholesterol and their functions. Basically, cholesterol cannot dissolve in the blood. Therefore, the liver produces substances called lipoproteins to distribute cholesterol throughout the body. There are two main types of lipoproteins, namely:

Low-density lipoprotein (LDL)

LDL functions to carry cholesterol throughout the body through arterial blood vessels. If the levels are too high, LDL will build up in the walls of the arteries. LDL is known as "bad cholesterol".

High-density lipoprotein (HDL)

HDL functions to return excess cholesterol to the liver, to be excreted from the body. Hence, HDL is known as "good cholesterol".

Below are normal cholesterol values ​​consisting of LDL, HDL, triglycerides, and total cholesterol, which can be found from a blood test:
  • LDL: less than 100 mg / dL.
  • HDL: 60 mg / dL or more.
  • Triglycerides: less than 150 mg / dL.
  • Total cholesterol: less than 200 mg / dL.

Causes of High Cholesterol

Hypercholesterolemia or high cholesterol can be triggered by an unhealthy lifestyle, illness, and heredity, as will be explained below.

Unhealthy lifestyle

Consumption of foods high in cholesterol and saturated fat can lead to high cholesterol. Examples of these foods are fried foods, full cream milk, chicken skin, and offal. Other habits that can increase cholesterol levels are lack of exercise and smoking.


People with obesity, diabetes, and hypothyroidism are prone to suffer from high cholesterol.


High cholesterol can be triggered by changes or mutations in a number of genes, which are passed down from both parents. This gene mutation prevents the body from removing cholesterol from the blood. However, high cholesterol due to genetic factors is less common when compared to the two previous factors.

List of Fruits To Lower High Cholesterol

There are many ways you can do to lower cholesterol levels, one of which is to adjust your diet. People who have high cholesterol are advised to eat certain types of food, including fruit. This type of food has a lot of water-soluble fiber. The fiber in the fruit can bind bile acids, thereby reducing the absorption of fat and cholesterol in the blood.

In fact, the body needs cholesterol to help form healthy cells. However, too high a level of "bad" cholesterol can actually trigger plaque formation, clogging blood vessels. This condition can increase the risk of chronic diseases, such as stroke and heart disease. High cholesterol levels can be controlled by eating certain types of fruit, such as:

1. Bananas

Consumption of bananas is said to help lower cholesterol levels in the blood. This happens because the inulin content in bananas can help reduce cholesterol obtained from food consumption. That way, cholesterol levels in the blood can be controlled.

2. Apples

Apart from bananas, you can also eat one apple to help lower cholesterol levels. This type of fruit is rich in pectin, which is a nutrient that can help lower cholesterol. Pectin absorbs cholesterol and bad fats in the small intestine, then carries it out of the body through feces.

3. Avocado

Have a history of high cholesterol? Just eat avocado! This type of fruit is rich in monounsaturated fat which is good for maintaining heart health. Regularly eating avocados can help lower bad cholesterol. Avocado fruit is also rich in vitamins, minerals, and compounds that can inhibit cholesterol absorption in the body.

4. Guava

The content in guava fruit can also help protect the heart, especially from free radical damage. In addition, the potassium content and what is in this fruit can also help reduce bad cholesterol levels, blood pressure, and increase good cholesterol levels.

5. Beets

Beets are said to help reduce high blood cholesterol levels, although further research is still needed to prove it. However, a study published in the Journal of Horticultural Science & Biotechnology proves that eating fruits can help lower cholesterol levels in the blood.

6. Grapes

These grapes contain substances that play an active role in lowering cholesterol, namely flavonoid compounds, in addition, these compounds are also able to prevent blood clots and ward off damage caused by the entry of free radicals.

In addition, grapes also contain lots of fiber and have catechins that can lower LDL cholesterol and raise good cholesterol, HDL.

7. Pomegranate

Not only can it lower cholesterol, pomegranate also contains substances that can remove plaque in the bloodstream as a result of high blood cholesterol. This function is obtained from the content of nitric oxide found in pomegranates.

Reportedly again, the antioxidant content in pomegranate is three times more than red wine.

8. Mango

Mango fruit is also a source of Vitamin C which can prevent bad cholesterol from being oxidized, the main cause of plaque (accumulation) of cholesterol in blood vessels.

On the other hand, mangoes are also a source of fiber-rich foods that can reduce the entry of cholesterol into the bloodstream at the digestive stage.

9. Berries

The types of fruit that are included in the berry category are known to be rich in pterostilbene, which has antioxidant properties. Besides being able to lower bad cholesterol, this substance can also prevent plaque buildup in the arteries which, if allowed, can cause coronary heart attacks and strokes.

10. Tomatoes

Tomatoes are known to have lots of lycopene content which also has a role in lowering bad cholesterol (LDL) levels. We can enjoy tomatoes and get their goodness by eating it fresh, making juice, or eating it in the form of soup.

And did you know that tomatoes can also be a healthy food for chronic gastritis sufferers because of their properties that can calm the stomach.

11. Watermelon

Who does not know this fresh fruit, besides being able to quickly get rid of thirst, it turns out that watermelon is also included in the list of cholesterol-lowering fruits. This is known because watermelon contains lycopene as well as tomatoes which can lower bad cholesterol levels in the blood.

12. Pears

This fruit is an excellent source of water soluble fiber (fiber that dissolves and forms substance) - like gels including pectin. And although apples are usually high in pectin, pears are actually higher in pectin.

Therefore, pears are one of the cholesterol-lowering fruits. The pectin in pears also helps cleanse the intestines and promote bowel movements.

13. Olives

Olives are rich in anti-oxidant substances (hydroxytyrosol) which have the benefit of reducing cholesterol levels in the blood but not reducing good cholesterol levels in the body (HDL).

This fruit will also have a good effect on heart health because it contains monounsaturated fatty acids and vitamin E which can later increase good cholesterol levels.

To get the maximum benefits, we can consume at least a mixture of 2 (two) tablespoons of olive oil and olives mixed in the salad.

14. Lemon

Lemons are high in vitamin C, namely 1 cup of fresh lemon juice has 94 milligrams; 1 cup of raw lemon segments contains 112 milligrams of vitamin C.

Vitamin C in lemon will reduce the production of apo-B, a substance that triggers increased cholesterol in the blood. In lemon buag also contains antioxidants that contribute to reducing LDL oxidants.

15. Lime

Lime is very rich in flavonoids known as polymethoxylated flavones, antioxidants that have a strong effect on lowering cholesterol, especially bad LDL cholesterol.

In addition, lime also contains high vitamin C which plays a role not only in helping prevent damage from LDL cholesterol but also reducing the risk of cardiovascular disease, because it can lower total cholesterol overall.

Studies show mixed results and have used vitamin C supplements in amounts between 100 and 1,000 milligrams per day.

Apart from being able to help lower cholesterol, fruit is also rich in nutrients, vitamins, and minerals that provide a myriad of health benefits, including maintaining blood pressure, improving intestinal health, and boosting immunity. Come on, eat fruit to prevent and lower high cholesterol!

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