Here are some solutions if you are suffering from high cholesterol
Cholesterol is a waxy, fat-like substance that’s found in all the cells in your body. In addition to the cholesterol we consume through food, our body also produces cholesterol. Fat in our diet is the direct source of cholesterol which is accumulated in our bodies. Often we add fat or oil to our diets.
Fat in the diet can be divided into two main types as saturated and unsaturated fat.
By using these saturated fats and trans fat, the liver also produces significant amounts of cholesterol.
”Cholesterol is harmful to the body.” You must have heard this….
Is Cholesterol really bad for your body…???
Cholesterol contributes to many functions in our body. For example,
To produce certain hormones that are important to our body,
For bile production,
For vitamin D production, etc.
Therefore if you do not have enough cholesterol in the body, these functions can be impaired.
But if too much cholesterol builds up in the bloodstream, it can be harmful to the body. This situation can lead to many problems. Hypercholesterolemia is a condition in which the level of cholesterol is above normal levels.
There are two main types of cholesterol in our body, LDL (bad cholesterol) and HDL (good cholesterol) .
Who are at higher risk of getting high cholesterol levels?
People with high blood pressure
People with a family history of high cholesterol and high blood pressure
People who are less physically active
High Cholesterol levels can lead to,
Blocking of coronary arteries
Fat deposition in the arteries is called atherosclerosis, which can cause heart attack and stroke.
Below are the optimal levels of LDL, HDL, TAG and total cholesterol in your body.
Total cholesterol <= 200mg/dL
LDL cholesterol <= 100mg/dL
HDL Cholesterol – Males> 40 mg/dL / Females> 50 mg/dL
triglycerides <= 150mg/dL
Can we control high blood cholesterol levels only by medications
Cholesterol can also be controlled by modifying your normal diet and exercises
Mainly unsaturated fat, MUFA (Cashew, Peanut, Avocado, Canola Oil, Olive Oil) and PUFA (Mackerel, Sardine, Sparrow, Corn Oil, Soybean Oil, Sunflower Oil) can lower the level of bad cholesterol (LDL) and increase the levels of good cholesterol (HDL).
It helps maintain a healthy cholesterol level.
What are the good eating habits to follow to reduce high blood cholesterol levels
Excessive consumption of refined food including rice and wheat flour products can increase the levels of triglycerides in our bodies. Instead, whole grain wheat flour products and whole grains such as oats should be consumed more often.
Eat more starch-free vegetables such as eggplant, drumsticks, snake gourd, cauliflower, leeks, bitter gourd, beans and green leafy vegetables such as gotu kola, mukunuwenna, kankun, sarana, tampala and spinach.
Fiber in mango, banana, avocado, papaya, pomegranate, grapes, berry and citrus fruits can lower your blood cholesterol levels. So have them as dessert after your main meals.
Legumes such as green peas, cowpeas, chickpeas and soybeans are also good for regular consumption. Peanuts are high in unsaturated fat (PUFA), which lowers LDL in the blood and is good for the body.
Add foods containing heart-healthy omega 3 fatty acids such as herring, sprats, salmon and mackerel to your diet.
Eggs contain cholesterol but it does not affect healthy people. For people with high cholesterol levels, having one egg per day doesn’t cause a huge problem.
Consumption of high fat (saturated fat) meat (pork, beef) and meat-based products (sausages, bacon, ham) should be minimized and it is best to remove the skin of the chicken before cooking.
Instead of using full cream milk and milk products, go for non-fat or low-fat varieties.
Avoid overconsumption of cheese and butter.
Coconut milk is high in saturated fat, so use diluted milk instead of thick milk. One coconut a day is enough for five adults.
It is very important to use less oil when cooking. Be sure to use coconut oil when cooking at high temperatures while deep-frying and vegetable oil (sunflower oil/ sesame oil/ corn oil/ olive oil) in normal cooking at medium temperature. Also, avoid reusing cooking oil.
Reduce frequent intake of bakery products such as biscuits and cakes.
It is good to drink beverages such as king coconut, belimal, ranawara and kolakanda in between meals.
Avoid smoking and limit your alcohol consumption.
Exercise daily and lead an active lifestyle as it helps in lowering the cholesterol (LDL) level (Engage in activities like brisk walking/ running/ swimming/ cycling 30 minutes daily or 45 minutes for at least 3-4 days a week). By following the correct nutritional advice,undoubtedly you too will be able to have a healthy life free from high blood cholesterol levels……..
-Nutrition Society –
-Wayamba University of Sri Lanka-