Dr. Jenkins's studies have shown that Portfolio can lower 'bad' LDL cholesterol by as much as 28 percent. Although the diet is designed for heart health, many of its followers lose weight as well as lowering their cholesterol levels.
If you decide to adopt the diet, substitute soy-based foods for milk and meat. Also, eat lots of 'sticky' fiber -- three servings each day of psyllium, barley, and oat supplements. You should also eat plenty of veggies like okra, eggplant, and nuts. If you prefer, you may have plant sterols in capsule form.
To reach the level of sterols required by Portfolio, you will need to use margarine like Benecol© or Take Control© which are both foods fortified with plant sterols. Avacados are the only food with more than 100 mg of sterols per serving. Yet another good sterol source is corn oil with 130 mg per tablespoon.
These foods contain at least .4 gram of plant sterol per serving, but keep in mind you need twice that to affect cholesterol:
- Brussel sprouts
- Sunflower and sesame seeds
- Olive oil
- Canola oil
If you prefer to lower cholesterol by means other than drugs, give The Portfolio Diet a try. A 2003 study of 46 adults saw an average of 28.6 percent reduction in LDL by 4 weeks. The plan may take some getting used to because of the foods you need to give up and those you need to add, but the results are worth it. Don't be afraid to suggest it to your physician or nutritionist.
Reference: Effect of a dietary portfolio of cholesterol-lowering foods given at 2 levels of intensity of dietary advice on serum lipids in hyperlipidemia: a randomized controlled trial