Name of the food


Its Effect


Ideas- if needed


Fresh, raw whole/ crushed

Lowers cholesterol levels, help to remove plaque from our arteries and can inhibit cholesterol synthesis.

Eat 1-2 cloves of fresh raw garlic in the morning on an empty stomach Or Add to dals, rotis, vegetables, chutneys like Carrot Garlic Chutney, Tandoori Gobi etc.


Whole beans, soyamilk, curds granules, chunks, tofu (soya paneer)

Contains antioxidant compounds like ‘Genistein’, ‘Isoflavones’ that help lower blood cholesterol levels and remove fatty clots from the arteries.

Can add 250 gm soya flour in 1 kg of wheat flour or include beans of sprouts in your daily diet, make Hara Bhara Soya Tikkis, Soya Mutter Pulao etc.


Raw and cooked

Rich in ‘Quercetin’ and ‘Selenium’, potent antioxidants. An onion a day can raise HDL levels too.

Can be added to dals, vegetables or eaten raw in salads and raita. Check the recipe of HealthyBrown Onion Soup.

Fenugreek (methi)

Seeds, sprouts, leaves, powder

Rich in protein and fibre, which binds cholesterol in the body and aids in its elimination.

Consume soaked seeds in the morning on an empty stomach or sprouts can be added to salads or used in tempering dals and kadhis like Healthy Kofta Kadhi and Nutritious Tandoori Roti.

Bulgur Wheat (dalia) / Bran

Mixed with other flours

Bulgur wheat and bran are rich in fibre which binds cholesterol in the body and aids in its elimination.

Add to flours to make rotis or naan, can also be used in baking. Fada ni Khichdi and Vegetable and Bean Soup are classic examples.


Rolled oats or oat flakes

Contains a soluble fibre called ‘Beta-glucan’, a potent cholesterol-lowering agent. Oat bran lowers LDL and raises HDL.

Can be mixed into flour to make rotis, breads. Oats Roti,

Buckwheat/ Ragi (nachni)

Whole, coarsely ground or powdered

Plant chemicals present in buckwheat help maintain blood flow, keep platelets from clotting excessively All these actions help to protect against heart disease.

Can be mixed with other flours or can be used to make upma, Dhokla as done in the recipe of Buckwheat Dhokla, Nachni Khichu and Stuffed Ragi Pancakes.

Green Leafy Vegetables, other vegetables and fresh fruits like apple, guava, grapes, citrus fruits etc.

Raw or cooked

Rich in fibre, vitamin A and C, antioxidants that protects arteries from damage. Fresh fruits and vegetables are also low in calories and rich in fibre (especially green peas, cluster beans)

Can be added into salads or can make vegetables.(Potato and Peas Salad and Green Peas Skin Soup)

Fruits can be eaten raw, in salads or in desserts. (Fruits in Mango Dressing and Pears with Low Fat Custard).


Fresh or dried (powder,spice)

Fights free radicals, aids circulation, lowers cholesterol levels, improves blood vessel health, inhibits clogging of arteries.

Fresh turmeric in lemon can replace oily pickles, can be mixed in salads and it is used as a spice in daily cooking like Hyderabadi Baghara Baingan.

Olive oil/ rice bran oil

Cooking medium or as a dressing

Rich in vitamin E (antioxidant), MUFA and plant chemicals “squalene” that help lower blood cholesterol levels.

Used in your daily cooking or can be added to salads as dressing. Vegetable and Bean Soup and Tangy Lettuce Salad


Raw or cooked

Rich in MUFA, potassium and chromium, all of which help to regulate blood cholesterol levels.

Add to salads like Exotic Salad.

Nuts like almonds

and walnuts

Whole or powdered

Rich in monounsaturated fatty acids (MUFA) and omega-3 fatty acids respectively. A storehouse of antioxidants, fibre and phytonutrients that helps lower LDL levels while maintaining HDL levels.

Dr Darius H Umrigar MD(AM)

Add to salads, gravies and desserts like Healthy Sheera and Apple Crumble.

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