Diet To Reduce High Cholesterol
Diet For High Cholesterol
If you have elevated levels of fats in the blood (hyperlipemia) - eg. if you suffer from raised cholesterol (hypercholesterolemia) (in the upper range 200-239 mg/dL) or high triglycerides (hypertriglyceridemia) (> 200 mg/dL) - your doctor will almost certainly advise you to follow a specific diet plan designed to lower your cholesterol. So here is some advice about a cholesterol reduction diet.
Eating Guide For Patients With Raised Cholesterol
1. Dietary Nutrition Is Critical
If you want to improve your cholesterol count, it's not simply a question of eating less fat. A low-fat diet by itself is unlikely to work. Instead, you need to follow a nutritionally balanced diet that provides you with the right balance of macronutrients (fats, protein, carbs) and micronutrients (vitamins, minerals), plus sufficient amounts of both soluble and insoluble fiber. The point is, to maintain a healthy body and an efficient metabolism, we need a wide range of nutrients, otherwise our system won't function effectively. So for best cholesterol results, aim to develop healthy eating habits across the board.
2. Choose Healthy Fats
Eat More Omega-3 Essential Fatty Acids
Switch To Non-Saturated Fats/Oils
Beware Trans Fat
Limit Your Intake Of Dietary Cholesterol
3. Eat Plenty Of Fruits And Vegetables
Fruit and veg is packed with valuable nutrients and contains a number of plant chemicals (phytochemicals) which are supposed to offer some protection again heart disease and cancer.
Fruit is a rich source of the antioxidant vitamin C (which helps to protect against degenerative diseases like atherosclerosis and cancer) and potassium (helps to regulate blood pressure), as well as both soluble and insoluble fiber both of which may help lower cholesterol slightly. Vegetables provide a wide range of nutrients, many of which help to maintain good heart health.
How much fruit and vegetables you should eat depends on your overall calorie intake. As a minimum guide, eat 2 cups of fruit and 2.5 cups of vegetables per day for every 2000 calories consumed.
4. Choose High Fiber, Low-GI Carbohydrates
Despite claims from advocates of low-carb diets that carbs are bad, the fact is that many carbohydrates are an essential element in any low cholesterol diet plan. They are very nutritious and an excellent source of both soluble and insoluble fiber. The basic rule is to choose high-fiber low-GI carbs that are whole grain: meaning unrefined carb foods that retain most of the original fiber and grain. Examples of available whole grains include: wholewheat, whole oats/oatmeal, wheatgerm, whole-grain corn, air-popped popcorn, brown rice, basmati rice, whole rye, whole-grain barley, buckwheat.
Lower Your Cholesterol Further By Improving Lifestyle
Although eating a heart-friendly diet is an important step towards healthy cholesterol levels, anyone suffering from hypercholesterolemia, familial hypercholesterolemia or hypertriglyceridemia must consider the cholesterol-lowering benefits of physical exercise and take steps to follow a program of medically approved exercise. Although it is important to match the intensity and duration of your workout to your physical condition, there is no doubt that regular aerobic or cardio exercise strengthens the heart muscle, improves cholesterol results and helps protect against atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease.
Maintain A Healthy Weight
Obesity is now established as an independent risk factor for atherosclerosis and coronary heart disease. It is also part of a cluster of symptoms (others include, hypertension, hyperlipemia, diabetes) which make up the condition known as insulin resistance syndrome - itself a predictor of adverse heart health. So for optimum cholesterol levels and heart health, try to maintain a healthy weight (BMI 20-24.9). If you are overweight (BMI 25-29.9) or obese (BMI > 30), it is definitely worthwhile losing weight. In fact, if you follow a healthy weight loss diet you should very quickly see an improvement in your cholesterol bloodwork.
Cigarettes and other forms of tobacco help to increase LDL levels (bad cholesterol), and depress HDL levels (good cholesterol). In fact, smoking massively increases the risk of heart attacks and strokes.
© 2000-2014 Anne Collins - All rights reserved.