Foods suitable for a cholesterol-lowering diet include high-fiber foods, avocados, nuts, fish high in omega-3 fatty acids and foods cooked in olive oil, according to Mayo Clinic. Dieters should avoid full-fat dairy products and any foods containing trans fats. For the most effective lowering of cholesterol, the dieter should stop smoking and increase exercise.
A cholesterol-lowering diet that focuses on the same foods often becomes boring, warns WebMD, so dieters can choose substitutes to help them reach their goals. Avocado oil has the same advantages as olive oil but introduces a new flavor into the diet. Sablefish, a sustainable North Pacific fish, replaces salmon as a source of omega-3s with a white fish similar in texture to halibut. Substitutions such as parsnips for carrots provide a change of flavor and additional fiber not available in the more common food.
Dieters may even eat some meat while still lowering cholesterol. Lean beef is an option, but it is essential to trim all visible fat from the meat, advises the American Heart Association. Shoppers should choose choice or select cuts of meat over prime cuts. Further reducing fat is sometimes as simple as broiling meats instead of pan-frying them. Processed meats are high in fat and sodium, so dieters should avoid them.