Low Cholesterol Diet Definition – Cholesterol is a type of fat. Our body makes its own, and we also eat foods that contain cholesterol. Cholesterol is not bad. It helps us digest food, produce hormones and structure our cell walls. Our bodies have an ideal level of cholesterol levels.
When we upset this balance through things like poor diet, inactivity, and chronic stress, we put our bodies and blood vessels at risk. When your doctor draws your blood lipid panel, they usually look at four things: LDL, HDL, triglycerides, and total cholesterol. I’m a visual person (and let’s be real, none of us have time to read long paragraphs), so let’s break them down into an image:
Low Cholesterol Diet Definition
A statin is a type of medication that works to lower cholesterol by limiting the enzyme involved in the body’s own cholesterol production.
Low Density Lipoprotein
As with all drugs, statins have some side effects. The most common symptom is muscle pain, which occurs in about 5% of people taking statins (1). Other less common side effects include high blood sugar, liver inflammation, and confusion (2). Unfortunately, statins are also known to lower levels of coenzyme q10 in the body, which is involved in many nerve and muscle pathways (3).
Statins can improve certain cholesterol levels and reduce the risk of heart attacks (4). Doctors may recommend a statin for you for reasons such as family history/risk, for example. For most of us, however, statins don’t address the most common cause…an unhealthy lifestyle! Improved diet, exercise, and stress can reduce your risk of heart attack by up to 80 percent(5)!
My point in saying this is not to get you down and stop your statins. Rather, it is SO IMPORTANT to understand that we cannot take medicine and call it good. We need to make lifestyle changes our main focus to make REAL change in our health!
It’s important to address the root cause of your high cholesterol levels. For most, that means improving their diet and lifestyle. These 7 interventions can put you on the right path to improved cholesterol levels and, most importantly… a healthier heart!!
Low Fat And Low Cholesterol Diet Plan
Cold water fish have two fatty acids, abbreviated as EPA and DHA. These are a type of omega-3 fat. EPA/DHA has extremely effective anti-inflammatory properties(6). and has been shown to significantly reduce triglycerides in many large review studies (7).
The best types of fish to get your EPA/DHA are salmon, mackerel, anchovies, sardines and yellowfin tuna. Try to aim for 4 ounces of fish at least twice a week. If you don’t eat fish regularly, consider taking a fish oil pill. I generally recommend at least 1000 mg/day total EPA + DHA to start with, but you may need more if your triglycerides are too high. Talk to your doctor about this.
My favorite brand of fish oil is called OmegaGenics by Metagenics. This company ensures that their supplements are third-party verified, which means you can be confident that what’s on the label is actually in the product! Click here to get a 10% discount on my online store!
Fiber can bind cholesterol and help excrete it, effectively lowering total and LDL cholesterol (8). We need at least 30 grams of fiber a day. The average American only eats about 14 grams of fiber a day. All types of fiber are beneficial for the heart and arteries, but soluble fiber is especially helpful for lowering cholesterol.
Introduction To Food Product Claims — Fda Reader
Sugar is a major driver of high cholesterol and inflammation (9). A good place to start to cut back on sugar is to limit sugary drinks. This includes soda, Kool-Aid, lemonade, energy drinks, etc. However, this also includes pre-bottled juices and smoothies.
Smoothie drinks like Naked can have as much sugar as a can of Coke. “BUT it’s natural sugar!”. True – the sources of sugar come from fruit. However, excessive amounts of natural sugar will still affect our blood sugar levels. A better option (besides sticking to water) is to make a smoothie at home. For your smoothie, keep fruit to 1 cup and include good sources of protein and healthy fats for a more balanced blend.
That’s how long the low-fat diet lasts. Low-carb diets with higher sources of healthy fats can help lower triglycerides while raising HDL (10, 11). Most of your fats should come from monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats: nuts, seeds, avocados, olive oil, etc. These fats can provide more satiety (fullness) and help balance your blood sugar, which reduces your tendency to eat sugar. Food. Pay less attention to calorie levels and instead focus on eating REAL food (less ingredients and less processed).
Physical activity is the first thing you can do to increase your HDL (the good). This doesn’t mean you have to join a gym! Walking is an extremely effective method for losing weight and improving cholesterol. Do you have a furry spouse, friend, or companion who can hold you accountable? It keeps you motivated. Small goals are also helpful in this scenario. If walking doesn’t honk, find something you enjoy (biking, swimming, climbing, etc.). Exercise is about honoring your body, not punishing it.
Guide To A Low Cholesterol Diet (source: The Medical City Nutrition Management Services)
Only 50% of Americans eat enough magnesium (12). This powerful mineral has many benefits for the body. Specifically, magnesium has been shown to lower CRP, a protein that rises when your body is inflamed (13). As high cholesterol and heart health are strongly related to inflammation – this will only help you.
Dark leafy greens, organic dark chocolate, almonds, roasted sesame seeds, sunflower seeds, broccoli, pumpkin seeds, black beans, avocado, banana.
When people think of vitamin K, most go to vitamin K1, which helps with blood clotting. Its forgotten sibling, vitamin K2, helps remove calcium buildup from the arteries (14). While this vitamin may not directly lower cholesterol, calcium buildup is a key component of artery-clogging plaque. Good sources of vitamin K2 include whole milk hard cheeses, egg yolks, chicken breast, ground beef, butter and liver. Grass-fed animals contain higher levels of vitamin K2 compared to grain-fed animals.
You may notice that the best sources of vitamin K2 also contain saturated fat, which has been blamed for causing heart disease since the 1970’s. This recommendation is quite controversial in the medical community. A large review of nearly 350,000 people followed for over 20 years found a lack of evidence linking saturated fat to the development of heart disease (15).
The Diagnosis And Treatment Of Hypertriglyceridemia (06.12.2019)
While saturated fat shouldn’t be the main source of fat in your diet, don’t be afraid to add these vitamin K2 powerhouses because of the saturated fat content. Most importantly, make sure your K2 sources are high-quality, grass-fed, pasture-raised animal sources. But, as always, plants should still be the dominant part of our meals.
For years, doctors have told people to avoid eggs because of their cholesterol content (and many still do). I see this quite often, patients come to me and swap their breakfast of protein-rich eggs for a cold cereal with sugar and less protein.
The effect of the cholesterol we eat on the blood cholesterol level is not strong (16). In fact, the US Dietary Guidelines for Americans even removed their restriction on cholesterol in 2015. We shouldn’t be eating 5-egg omelettes every day with lots of processed meat. But 1-2 eggs combined with fiber-rich foods (like beans, sautéed vegetables, avocado, etc.) can be a healthy breakfast option to keep us full until our next meal or snack.
Making all this information work can be tricky. I created a free 7-day meal plan full of anti-inflammatory and heart-healthy foods. Get your copy below! Some eating plans are low in cholesterol, including vegan, Mediterranean, and TLC diets. These diets can provide important health benefits and have common themes and associations that make them beneficial for lowering cholesterol levels.
The Effects Of Cholesterol On The Body
And they need it for many important processes, such as hormone synthesis. Every cell in the body needs cholesterol to function. The liver produces most of the cholesterol a person needs.
Cholesterol is also found in certain foods, including animal products such as meat, cheese and eggs. There are two main types of cholesterol circulating in the blood: low-density lipoprotein (LDL) or bad cholesterol, high-density lipoprotein (HDL) or good cholesterol. In this article, we look at the idea of a cholesterol-free diet and whether it is effective. We also explain the benefits of the Mediterranean diet and other diets for controlling cholesterol. Is a cholesterol-free diet healthy?
Because a vegan diet significantly reduces saturated fat intake, it can be a good food option for anyone looking to lower cholesterol.
A completely cholesterol-free diet is not a healthy option. However, a low-cholesterol or cholesterol-lowering diet can be part of an effective plan to manage blood cholesterol in those with high levels.
What Is Non Hdl Cholesterol?
Cholesterol levels also depend on genetics, body weight, diet quality and exercise levels. A person’s dietary intake of cholesterol is only one factor.
According to US Department of Health and Human Services guidelines, the ideal amount of LDL cholesterol in the blood is less than 100 milligrams per deciliter (mg/dL).
If a person’s LDL level is
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