Foods containing low density lipoprotein, or LDL, cholesterol are animal-based and/or commercially-prepared products. LDL cholesterol, according to the American Heart Association, is found in foods containing saturated and/or trans fats. Saturated fats are found in animal-based products. Trans fats are found in commercially prepared products containing partially hydrogenated oils and shortening. LDL cholesterol needs to be monitored to ensure your cardiovascular health.
Whole fat dairy foods contain LDL cholesterol in the form of saturated fats. According to the American Heart Association, whole fat dairy can include a variety of dairy products. Foods containing LDL include milk, mayonnaise, butter, eggnog, cream, hard and soft cheeses, cottage cheese, sour cream, ice cream and yogurt. Included in the whole fat category are products labeled as containing 2 percent fat.
Egg yolks are notable for containing high amounts of cholesterol. One egg yolk, according the USDA, can contain 215 milligrams of LDL. If watching your cholesterol is a concern for you, egg yolks are not a recommended food choice.
LDL cholesterol is found in a variety of red meats such as lamb, beef, pork and veal. Some cuts are fattier than others, thereby increasing the LDL level. According to the USDA, a serving size of prime rib can contain as much as 72 grams of LDL.
Organ meats also contain LDL. Organ meats include liver, brains, tripe and kidneys. A 3-ounce serving size of liver can contain 320 mg of LDL, the USDA says.
Lean protein sources such as poultry without skin, fish and shellfish all contain LDL. The amounts are lesser than those in red meat, however, claims the USDA. Shellfish include crab, lobster, clams, oysters, shrimp and scallop. Salmon is recommended as a low-fat protein source by the Mayo Clinic due to its capabilities of reducing LDL while also raising high-density lipoprotein, or HDL, cholesterol, typically called good cholesterol.
Processed meats such as sausage, cold cuts, pepperoni, bologna and hot dogs contain LDL cholesterol, claims the American Heart Association. Other processed foods that contain LDL include breakfast cereals, breads, crackers, energy bars, deep-fried fast foods, many restaurant foods, boxed foods, canned foods and prepackaged foods.
Foods ContainingTrans Fats
Foods made with fats that are hardened at room temperature contain harmful trans fats. Trans fats contain large amounts of LDL, claims the USDA . Trans fats serve a “double whammy to our systems,” cites the Mayo Clinic, since they lower our HDL cholesterol while increasing our LDL level. Foods containing trans fats typically include commercially prepared baked goods such as cakes, pies, cookies, pastries and doughnuts. Some snack foods, such as potato chips, will contain trans fats when they are fried in shortening.
- USDA National Nutrient Database for Standard Reference; Release 20, USDA; 2008