Best Oatmeal to Eat to Lower Cholesterol

"Whole grain oats contain soluble fiber which helps to lower cholesterol," says Lisa Young, PhD, RDN."Steel-cut oats, in particular, can help to lower cholesterol and are high in soluble fiber."

According to a 2015 study from the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, whole-grain oats are known to be the best whole grain for lowering LDL cholesterol numbers.

Harvard Health specifically points out how diets that feature whole-grain oats are superior to diets just focusing on whole-grain products, causing average cholesterol levels to drop by 6.5 points.

While rolled-cut oats (also known as "old fashioned" oats) are the more popular variety to buy and cook, grabbing a bag of steel-cut oats can result in a positive response for anyone looking to lower

their cholesterol numbers. Having lower numbers is particularly important given that a build-up of cholesterol can clog your arteries increase your risk of developing heart disease.

Preparing steel-cut oats

Given that steel-cut oats are a rawer form of the natural oat grain, they do take a bit longer to cook. However, Young has a specific trick up her sleeve that can

make a delicious bowl of steel-cut oats in the morning and also provide you with the soluble fiber that helps lower your cholesterol.

"I love the steel-cut oats—also called Irish oats—mixed with water or unsweetened vanilla-flavored plant milk," says Young. "For an added health boost,

 I love to add sliced apples before cooking which gives the oatmeal a yummy flavor and the apples taste almost like apple pie. I top with ground flax seeds and walnuts.

To cook your steel-cut oats, simply add one part oats to three parts water (so one cup of steel-cut oats should cook in three cups of water, or a mix of water and plant-based milk) and

should cook for about 20 to 30 minutes—or until the oats are tender. Some oat lovers will actually soak their steel-cut oats beforehand overnight to soften them up,

making the cooking process a lot faster in the morning. Also, be sure to stir in the gel-like substance you see when cooking your oats—this is the soluble fiber at work, and

the important nutrient in your oats that helps lower cholesterol.If you make a large pot of steel-cut oats for meal prep, you can easily heat up a bowl in the microwave for one or two minutes,

stirring in some liquid to soften up the texture (like water or plant-based milk) and keep the oats from drying out.

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