Cholesterol Re-absorption


Oats actively help lower cholesterol re-absorption^

Oats contain a special type of natural soluble fibre called beta glucan, found in the endosperm layer of the oat grain. Studies show that eating about 3g of beta glucan a day helps lower cholesterol re-absorption^. When cholesterol enters your digestive tract from food or as bile from the liver, some of it is re-absorbed via the bloodstream as part of the fat metabolism process. Beta glucan, found in oats, dissolves in the digestive tract where it forms a thick gel which binds to excess cholesterol. The gel and the cholesterol are then excreted as part of the body’s waste rather than being reabsorbed back into the body, helping to lower cholesterol re-absorption. The UNCLE TOBYS Team select breeds of oats specifically for their creamy taste and high beta glucan content. We also test a sample of our oats up to 3 times for their beta-glucan content, ensuring that only the highest quality oats make it into a box of UNCLE TOBYS oats.

^A 40g serve of oats provides a minimum of 1g beta-glucan. Oats can help lower cholesterol re-absorption as part of a healthy diet low in saturated fat, 3g of beta-glucan each day is required to help lower cholesterol re-absorption.


Foods that help you control your cholesterol

Cholesterol is a fatty substance produced naturally by your body and found in your blood. You can also get cholesterol from some foods. It is used for many different things in the body, but causes health problems when there is too much of it in the blood.
Saturated fat is the type of fat that clogs our arteries and raises our blood cholesterol levels. A diet high in saturated fat is the main cause of high cholesterol. Simple ways to reduce the amount we eat include switching from butter to margarine, choosing reduced fat dairy, and trimming visible fat from meat.

Enjoy healthy eating. Choose mainly plant-based foods, such as vegetables, fruits and legumes (dried peas, dried beans and lentils), and grain-based foods (preferably wholegrain), such as oats, bread, pasta, noodles and rice.
Consume moderate amounts of lean meats, poultry, fish and reduced fat dairy products, and include small amounts of polyunsaturated or monounsaturated oils and margarines.
In addition to eating a healthy diet (that’s low in saturated fat and includes good fats) and exercising regularly, there are some foods which have been shown to help lower cholesterol re-absorption in people with raised blood cholesterol levels.

These include:

  • Oats – rich in beta-glucan, found in the outermost oat bran layer of the oat groat
  • Barley & Psyllium – both are natural sources of soluble fibres which can also help lower cholesterol re-absorption
  • Plant sterols – found in specialist margarines, milks and yogurts which have been enriched with these natural plant ingredients. Consuming around 2g plant sterols a day, equivalent to spreading margarine on around 4 slices of bread, can help reduce cholesterol absorption in our intestines.



What is Cholesterol?

Cholesterol is a fatty substance produced by the liver and is also present in some foods we eat. Your body needs a small amount of ‘good’ HDL cholesterol to:

    • Produce sex hormones such as oestrogen and testosterone;
    • Support your digestion by producing bile acids which digest fat and absorb nutrients;
    • Carry ‘bad’ LDL cholesterol away from your arteries to your liver, where it is broken down to be removed.
    • Create vitamin D.

 Your body produces cholesterol

Cholesterol in foods (dietary cholesterol) has only a small effect on your blood cholesterol, especially when compared with the much greater increase caused by saturated fat in food. Your body is able to make its own cholesterol so it’s best to avoid foods that may lead to high blood cholesterol levels. Visit your GP to have your cholesterol tested with a detailed blood lipid test, requiring you to fast for 12 hours prior. The test will measure your total cholesterol levels, ‘good’ HDL and ‘bad’ LDL cholesterol levels, as well as a type of blood fat called triglycerides. Adults aged 45 years and older are at greater risk of high cholesterol so it’s particularly important to be regularly tested if you are in this age bracket.

What is a recommended range?

There are numerous considerations for recommended cholesterol levels with each individual’s situation requiring different professional advice. Your cholesterol levels should be considered as part of your total blood fat or lipid profile. In general terms the Heart Foundation’s suggested targets are:

  • LDL-cholesterol <2.5 mmol/L
  • Total cholesterol <4.0 mmol/L
  • HDL-cholesterol >1.0 mmol/L
  • Triglycerides <2.0 mmol/L

 What causes high cholesterol?

  • Eating too many foods high in saturated fats
  • Being overweight
  • Being physically inactive
  • Having a family history of high cholesterol.