What kind of bean do you pile high on your tacos or burritos? For better cholesterol, try the mighty pinto bean – one of the top foods high in fiber.

In a study, people who consumed half a cup of pinto beans every day lowered their total cholesterol by a whopping 8% in just 12 weeks. Talk about natural ways to lower cholesterol!

Power to the pinto

As one of the best foods high in fiber, pinto beans are known to help control cholesterol. How? By causing the body’s small intestine to produce more of a compound that helps keep cholesterol in check. And with 8 grams of protein, 8 grams of fiber, almost no fat and only 120 calories per half cup, what’s not to love about pinto beans?

Beans and blood fats

Changes in the gastrointestinal environment were only part of the reason pinto beans served as natural ways to lower cholesterol in the study. Researchers also think the nutrients in beans help – antioxidant nutrients like flavonoids, which are natural plan compounds that help defend against disease. Ready to serve up some tasty pintos? Try one of these serving ideas:

  • An easy side salad: Healthy Bean Salad
  • An energizing high-protein lunch: Three Bean Vegetable Chili
  • A low-calorie vegetarian dinner: Black Bean and Tofu Quesadillas