For National Cholesterol Education Month, make a commitment to be heart healthy and reduce cholesterol intake. Many individuals are unaware of foods high in cholesterol and their daily consumption supersedes the proper levels. According to the CDC, it is estimated that more than 102 million people, aged 20 years and older, are above the normal level of 200mg/dL of cholesterol. Cholesterol of 240mg/dL and above puts anyone at the risk of heart disease.
No symptoms are associated with high cholesterol levels; physicians perform blood tests called lipoprotein profile, which reveals the levels of LDL, HDL, and triglycerides. The low-density lipoproteins are the ‘bad” cholesterol and the high-density lipoproteins are the “good” cholesterol. Avoiding foods high in cholesterol, such as diary, eggs, fatty meats, and saturated or Trans fats, reduce the threat of heart disease and high blood pressure.
Consumption of foods low in cholesterol include fish, fruits, grains, lean meats, and vegetables. Why is it hard for people to conform to a healthy diet? Quick processed meals, fast food restaurants or canned and frozen foods, seem to be the choice of millions. As working parents rushing home to prepare meals for their family or singles who never fill the refrigerator, eating the wrong foods may eventually catch up to everyone’s health. Taking responsibility now conquers the probability of illness and disease later in life.
If the cholesterol levels tip the scale, avoidance poses many health risks. Foods to lower cholesterol are high in fiber and polyunsaturated fatty acids. Eating a bowl of oatmeal, sprinkling chia seeds on food, or eating almonds are a few suggestions to lower cholesterol. Including omega-3 fatty acids in a diet will additionally improve cholesterol along with various other health concerns according to UMMC (University of Maryland Medical Center). Be smart, start now, and continue for heart health.