February 19, 2010 RENU

  • If too high, you could be heading for a heart attack or stroke without knowing it if have other risk factors too(lack of exercise, smoking, high BP, diabetes, heart disease, genetic heart disease/stroke, age over 45 for men & 55 for women, obese). So take steps to reduce it.
  • Cholesterol is a waxy substance that travels in bloodstream.
  • The higher the cholesterol is, the more likely some cholesterol will build up in walls of blood vessels and make them narrower/block the blood flow. The decrease in blood flow/blockage could cause heart attack or stroke.
  • Cholesterol can be checked by a blood test.
  • Total cholesterol includes LDL & HDL cholesterol, as well as other fats in the blood stream. It shd be lower than 200.
  • LDL/bad cholesterol builds up in walls of blood vessels. It shd be lower than 100.
  • HDL/good cholesterol helps rid the body of excess cholesterol. It shd be 40 or higher.
  • The more fat you eat, the more cholesterol your body makes, so as 1st step, try to lower fat. Foods from bottom half of the pyramid are lower in fat & cholesterol. Take fat free dairy products, limit non-veg food & eat dried beans, lentils or tofu instead. Choose fish, chicken/turkey breast, lean red meat as side dishes.
  • Eat 5servings of fruits & vegs/day. Include at each meal & snack times. Many are high in the type of fiber that helps lower cholesterol.
  • Eat high fiber foods like corn tortillas, brown rice, whole grain breads & cereals. Build meals around bread, cereal, rice & pasta.
  • Try fruit/100% fruit juice, oatmeal or other whole grain cereal, whole wheat toast/bagel with jam/low fat cream cheese, egg white scrambled.
  • Lunch- corn tortillas with beans, rice with steamed vegetables, fat free curd/milk, salad/pasta & veg salad with 1t each oil & vinegar, vegetable/minestrone/bean soup, spaghetti with tomato sauce & 1oz parmesan, beans curry, baked potato, whole wheat pita/bread/roll/tortilla.
  • Lunch sidedish- 3oz stir fried tofu/lean meat, 1chicken burrito with beans, cheese/sour cream, 3oz baked/ broiled/steamed fish.
  • Snack- fruit, english muffin/bagel, pretzels/reduced fat crackers, low fat popcorn, graham crackers.
  • Dessert- non fat pudding, ice cream or frozen yogurt.
  • Choose canola oil/olive oil, light margarine, mayo, salad dressing. Avoid coconut/palm oil/butter/lard.
  • Limit olives, avocados, coconut as high in fat.
  • Your daily cholesterol shd be less than 300mg.
  • Look for low saturated fat, as raises cholesterol level the most. It is found mostly in animal foods.
  • Broil, roast, bake, steam, or microwave fish & meats.
  • Deskin chicken & turkey as has more fat.
  • Cook in wine/broth instead of fat.
  • Use nonstick pans & cooking sprays.
  • Flavor foods with herbs & butter flavored powders, lemon juice, flavored vinegar, onion, garlic, peppers.
  • Chill soups & stews, skim off fat & reheat.
  • Replace cream in desserts with fat-free condensed milk.
  • Use low fat cottage cheese/sour cream to make dips & toppings.
  • Use low fat buttermilk/yogurt in salad dressings.
  • Use 2egg whites in place of 1egg.
  • Choose soups made of broths.
  • In American restaurants- choose green salad with vegetables & light dressing, broiled hamburger with k.up, mustard, tomato & lettuce, broiled/baked fish/meats, meat sandwiches with mustard instead of mayo.
  • In fast food restaurants- choose broiled/grilled chicken sandwich, broiled hamburger, soft tacos, chicken/bean burrito, garden salad with light dressing, baked potato with chives.
  • In mexican restaurants- choose rice with chicken, chicken/fish fajita, chicken/bean burrito, marinated raw fish (ceviche), beans & rice, soft tacos, chicken tostada with beans(skip fried tortilla shell).
  • In Italian restaurants- choose minestrone soup, pasta with tomato sauce & vegs (primavera), fish stew (cioppino), broiled/grilled fish, chicken cacciatore, ravioli/tortellini/gnocchi in tomato sauce, pizza with vegetable toppings.
  • In Asian restaurants- soups made with broth, steamed pot stickers/dumplings, fish/chicken/tofu cooked in broth or steamed with vegetables, sushi/sashimi, yakitori, steamed rice/noodle dishes, thai seafood stew.
  • Exercise can help raise HDL, as well as weight. Walking, swimming, bike riding are good.
  • Smoking lowers HDL cholesterol & may also damage the lining of blood vessels.
  • High BP wears down the lining of blood vessels. Exercise, maintaining healthy weight, eating less salt lowes BP.
  • Diabetes can damage the walls of blood vessels. Exercise, eat low fat diet, maintain healthy weight.
  • Stress can increase BP & heart rate, which causes damage to blood vessels.
  • If less fat diet & exercise doesn’t lower cholesterol, medications need to be taken.

Entry Filed under: Health

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