Over 1/3 of Americans…
…had “bad” cholesterol (LDL) levels that qualified them for medication therapy, according to a CDC report from 2011-2012. However, less than 60% complied to taking medication regularly. So what are Americans doing to combat the side effects of high cholesterol? Well the answer is unknown, but many healthcare providers recommend adopting healthy lifestyle habits such as regular exercise, avoiding tobacco use, and eating a healthy diet. In fact, a cholesterol-lowering diet can decrease risk for stroke and heart attack, lower inflammation markers in the body, improve overall quality of life, and can even decrease dosage of medications required to manage cholesterol. So here are some dietary tips for improved cholesterol.
PREPARATION is KEY
Avoid frying foods.
Instead, when eating out and cooking at home, choose meats and vegetables that have been baked, boiled, broiled, stewed, steamed or grilled.
HAIL the OMEGA
Avoid nutrient lacking foods.
Opt for foods high in Omega-3 fatty acids such as salmon, mackerel, walnuts, almonds and flaxseed. Omega-3s have been found to increase “good” cholesterol (HDL) and not impact “bad cholesterol (LDL).
TRANSform your FAT
Avoid trans fats.
Pick monounsaturated fat-based oils like olive oil, canola and other healthier options. And when it comes to dairy products like milk, butter, cheese and yogurt, opt for the non-fat or lowfat options .
LEAN thy MEAT
Avoid fatty meats.
Instead, choose lean meat options like skinless chicken breast or turkey. For fattier pieces of meat, trim the meat before and after cooking.
Avoid low fiber foods.
Focus on foods high in soluble fibers which have been found to lower LDL. Foods like oats, beans, fruits, lentils, and vegetables will help you get your recommended 20-35 grams of fiber per day.
Avoid alcoholic beverages.
Instead, choose water or antioxidant-loaded herbal tea like hibiscus or green tea which has been found to improve cholesterol levels. Conversely, research shows that drinking alcohol excessively can increase cholesterol and triglycerides which in turn increases likelihood of stroke and heart attack. So stay hydrated!
Click HERE to learn more about the Wellview services available to you. We can’t wait to work with you!
– CASEY EDMONDS, CHC
Health Advisor | Email Casey