Made up of water, electrolytes, cholesterol and phospholipids, bile is a green fluid your liver makes that helps you digest fat. As a source of cholesterol, bile has an impact on blood cholesterol levels. Soluble fiber found in certain foods helps lower cholesterol by preventing your body from reabsorbing bile.
Video of the Day
After it exits your liver, bile is stored in your gallbladder until you eat, then it's secreted into your small intestines to help you digest the fat in your food. Bile helps your body break down the fat by emulsifying it and making it more soluble for digestion. About 500 milligrams of cholesterol is used to make bile, according to Colorado State University. After you've digested your food, the byproducts of bile, including the cholesterol, are either reabsorbed or eliminated from your body.
Soluble Fiber and Bile
Soluble fiber is one of two types of fiber found in food; the other is insoluble fiber. Soluble fiber is specifically known for helping to lower blood cholesterol levels. In your digestive tract, it absorbs the cholesterol and bile before they have a chance to get reabsorbed and carries them out of your body in your stool.
Sources of Soluble Fiber
Soluble fiber is found in a number of different foods. Oatmeal, as well as oat bran, may be some of the better-known sources. Other whole grains, such as barley and rye, are also good sources of the bile-absorbing fiber. Beans, including navy beans, chickpeas and kidney beans. are also rich in soluble fiber. You can also get more of this fiber in your diet by eating Brussels sprouts, okra, eggplant, oranges, grapes, apples and strawberries.
Adding Bile-Reducing Foods
You can easily incorporate the foods that help your body absorb bile. Start your day with a bowl of oatmeal topped with strawberries or diced apples. At lunch, add beans to your soup or salad or make a pureed bean dip and enjoy it with whole-wheat crackers or carrot sticks. Snack on grapes or oranges in the midafternoon. For dinner, add sliced Brussels sprouts to your veggie stir-fry or add extra eggplant to your ratatouille.