Achieving and maintaining a healthy level of cholesterol is very important if an individual wishes to avoid serious heart disease. However, this is easier said than done if, like me, you are completely oblivious to the types of food that may increase your cholesterol level.
The information I have read already seems to indicate that most foods that fall into the high-cholesterol bracket are the obvious ones, as in the types of food you would be advised to avoid in huge portions when following a reduced-calorie diet.
Carbohydrates, meats and dairy products tend to be the main offenders, although there are also a few surprises, such as my own personal favorite; ground turkey. This is because, even when the meat is advertised as being lean, it usually has around 12 grams of fat per three-ounce serving.
Pizza, is another potential shocker because, just one slice of basic cheese and tomato can contain a massive 10 grams of fat.
Professionals Recommend Natural Cholesterol Control … It’s Easier Than Your Think
I have to admit, the idea of cutting down on some of the “danger” items was not appealing to me at all, as I imagined a diet of lentils and lettuce. However, natural cholesterol control is actually easier than you would think if you know what you are doing.
According to experts, high cholesterol affects around 35-million people in America and is currently the most common cause of heart disease. In the last decade, the number of people suffering from high cholesterol has soared, a statistic that has been put down to the country’s obsession with fast food.
Cholesterol Lowering Foods Are Hard to Find in Fast Food … Really Too Bad
Now, I normally wouldn’t class myself as a fast food junkie – after all doesn’t that phrase refer to burger joints and Chinese takeaways?
No – seemingly it doesn’t.
Fast food is just that, food you can make fast, which sadly includes my beloved meals for one. These are easy microwave meals that take about five minutes to cook and are full of added sugar, additives and fat.
Everything that encourages my cholesterol to soar!
Although there was a silver lining to having such a poor diet and that is the fact that introducing cholesterol lowering foods into my diet should be relatively easy. High-fat meats, butter, processed foods and baked goods were all off the menu; at least until I reduced my cholesterol and then I could maybe reintroduce a couple of “sins” into my diet as a treat.
So What Is Cholesterol Really?
Cholesterol is a disgusting fatty wax-like substance found in every single cell in a person’s body. While many people know cholesterol is not a good thing, not many know that the body actually needs, what is known as, good cholesterol to aid the production of digestive substances, certain hormones and vitamin D.
This is the part that confused me and still does a little. I mean, how on earth was I to know how much cholesterol lowering food to include in my diet if I actually needed a certain amount of it to remain healthy.
To avoid blinding you with science, I will do my best to explain without getting too complicated. Cholesterol is transported around an individual’s bloodstream via small packets known as lipoproteins. These are made up of lipid, or fat to you and I, on the inside and protein on the outside.
In order for a person to maintain a healthy cholesterol level, they need to ensure their low-density and high-density lipoproteins are fairly even. Low-density lipoproteins are the baddies, as these can cause a dangerous build-up of cholesterol in the body’s arteries if occurring in large amounts. High-density lipoproteins are good when the level is controlled.
Yes, so was I – how can something that is high be classed as “good” and something low be classed as “bad”.
I eventually decided to concentrate on my diet changes, as oppose to understanding exactly what cholesterol was and why it could be dangerous in high quantities. One thing I was clear on was I really wanted to give natural cholesterol control a shot, no matter how much I may have to faff about with my diet at first.
No matter how high your cholesterol may be, it is possible to reduce this level to within healthy limits just by being wise with your knife and fork.
A Cholesterol Lowering Diet Doesn’t Have to Be Boring
Cholesterol lowering foods are not all bland, boring and tasteless if you know how to add your own twist on things. For example, whole grains, such as oats, are a superb source of soluble fiber, which is needed in order to help the body avoid absorbing cholesterol. Now, while oats on their own may not be overly attractive, added to a low-fat yogurt they make a great breakfast. This is a much more heart-healthy option than the dreaded fry up or even slices of toast. Eating oats, or any other type of whole grain that has at least three-grams of soluble fiber in, every single day can reduce a person’s cholesterol level by a pretty impressive ten-percent.
So, I have, so far, managed to get a grasp on cholesterol and how it is both good and bad for me. I also know that my own cholesterol level is dangerously high and needs to be reduced as quickly as possible if I want to avoid heart disease and other related health issues. I know a little on natural cholesterol control, although I plan to learn lots more on the subject. I also want to look in more detail at the different cholesterol lowering foods I can introduce into my diet, including how I can make the less-appealing foods a more exciting option.
It hasn’t been an easy process, accepting that I may well have caused irreparable damage to my body, purely because of poor choices in diet. I have also had to accept that in order to achieve what I want to with my new strive towards a healthier lifestyle; I am going to have to make more than changes to my diet. However, this is just the start, and I hope by sharing what I learn, as well as my experiences along the way, I will make the transition to a healthier way of living easier for, not only myself, but other people too.
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