A “magic snack” lowers cholesterol? (There’s more to the story)

A new study found that eating a “magic snack” can lower your LDL (“bad”) cholesterol… all without making any dietary or lifestyle changes. 

Sounds too good to be true, right? (YES!)  

The truth is, there’s no such thing as a “magic snack”. (Why does everything have to revolve around glorified images of food?!) 

Plus, as I just mentioned on Monday, the mainstream places too much focus on lowering cholesterol, anyway. 

Instead, the newsworthy finding here is how specific, healthy ingredients can help support your heart. 

Let me explain… 

Focus on these healthy ingredients  

Researchers found that eating snacks high in antioxidants, fiber, and phytosterols can lower LDL cholesterol.   

For the study, 54 adults were split into two groups. The first group received specifically formulated snacks using these ingredients. The second group received common grocery store snacks that were similar in calories and packaging.  

Participants were instructed to eat their snacks twice daily in place of something they were already eating.  

Ultimately, LDL cholesterol levels fell by almost nine percent in those eating the specifically formulated snacks. Plus, total cholesterol levels dropped by five percent. 

None of the participants were taking statin drugs before or during the study period. So of course, researchers jumped to the conclusion that these “magic snacks” can rapidly lower LDL cholesterol in people unable or unwilling to take statin drugs.   

But here’s why I’m just not buying it—and why it’s more about focusing on healthy dietary choices… 

Food is medicine (or poison)  

First of all, eating packaged, processed snacks (like the ones used in this study) is a recipe for disaster when it comes to long-term health. No matter how “magical” the claims appear to be, the point is that what you eat is important. 

(You know, the very thing I’ve been preaching for decades! Because what we put into our mouths will either kill us or help us. Period.) 

It’s an idea as old as time, yet it’s somehow “new” to these researchers.  

Not to mention, this routine snack adds nearly 400 additional daily calories. Something that will add up in time, thereby mitigating any protective benefits. 

Second, when it comes to cholesterol (and statin drugs), there’s much more to the story. (And no, unlike many conventional docs, I wasn’t brainwashed into thinking there’s a pill to cure everything.) 

Instead, it’s about opting for healthy ingredients that support heart health.  

For example, this snack “worked” because of its ingredients… 

Antioxidants (which are found in fresh produce like broccoli and avocado) can decrease inflammation and aid in healing endothelial function. Then, soluble fiber (like chia or flax seeds) and phytosterols (which can be found in small quantities in nuts and produce, or through smart supplementation) help support healthy cholesterol and triglyceride (blood fat) levels.  

So if you really want to protect your heart… don’t reach for pretty packages with big claims. Do your research—and stick to a healthy, balanced diet full of fresh, whole foods.  

If you’re looking for a way to incorporate these types of healthy ingredients into your homecooked meals, check out my Cooking with Dr. Fred Show on YouTube and Instagram.   

And for additional guidance on ultimate heart protection, check out my comprehensive, online learning tool my clicking here. 


“Tasty Modified Snacks Work to Lower Cholesterol: Study.” WebMD, 01/28/2022. (webmd.com/cholesterol-management/news/20220128/tasty-snacks-lower-cholesterol)