You may know that high cholesterol is bad for you, but how bad is it, exactly? Well, let us break it down. Low-density lipoproteins, LDL, are typically considered bad cholesterol, while high-density lipoproteins, HDL, are good cholesterol, as it is removed from the body. In contrast, high levels of LDL can lead to cholesterol build-up in your arteries. Those with high levels of LDL may have chest pain, nausea or fatigue, warning signs that change is needed.
The following are some high cholesterol foods that patients with high cholesterol levels should avoid:
1. Fatty meats
Fatty meats and meat derivatives, such as lamb, beef, pork, lard and shortening, should be avoided since consuming them in excess has been linked to increased risks of developing heart disease and certain cancers. Choose lean meats and eat a small portion instead!
2. Whole or Reduced Fat Dairy Products
No matter how tasty, dairy includes high numbers of saturated fat, which is bad for your heart, plus cholesterol. Opt for 1 percent or skim milk to enjoy dairy in limited quantities for better health.
3. Deep Fried or fast foods
That jumbo burger, large fry, chicken nuggets and milkshake may be calling your name, but there are consequences to giving into that craving too often. Not only can excess salt raise cholesterol levels, but it is also linked to multiple chronic and life-threatening diseases, such as diabetes, heart disease and obesity. Less processed foods and frequent cooking from home has led to people having less belly fat, lower weight and reductions in LDL cholesterol levels. Including plenty of veggies, fruits, whole grains and protein in the meals will make you forget you craved fast food and help you get healthier.
4. Processed pastries
We see you, convenience store doughnuts, snack cakes, cookies and whatever golden-fried, icing topped goodies are trending at the moment. Sure, you may want a sugar rush, but these pastries are loaded with sugar, unhealthy fats and loads of bad cholesterol. Treat yourself to berries or a handmade fruit smoothie a couple times a week for when you want something a bit sweet.
5. Saturated vegetable oils
Lurking in many breads, processed foods, salad dressing and even deli meat, saturated vegetable oils lack the HDL cholesterol your body needs. Stick to heart-healthy oils, such as olive, in limited, reasonable quantities. Your heart will thank you.
With some tasty substitutions, and trying your best to avoid these foods that are loaded with bad cholesterol, you or your patients will be well on your way towards a healthier, more fulfilling life. These simple swaps, such as those listed below each food above, allow you to still eat foods that have plenty of taste, but are lower in cholesterol, fat and sugar. Eat better, live better.