- What is cholesterol?
- What foods are high in cholesterol?
- How does cholesterol affect the body?
- What are the health risks of high cholesterol?
- How can high cholesterol be prevented?
- How is high cholesterol treated?
- What are the side effects of cholesterol-lowering medication?
- What lifestyle changes can help lower cholesterol?
- What home remedies can help lower cholesterol?
- When to see a doctor for cholesterol treatment?
We all know that cholesterol is bad for us, but do you know which foods are high in cholesterol? Here’s a list of foods to avoid if you’re trying to lower your cholesterol.
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What is cholesterol?
Cholesterol is a type of lipid molecule and is essential for the proper function of cell membranes. It is also a precursor for the biosynthesis of bile acids, vitamin D, and steroid hormones. Dietary cholesterol is found in animal-based foods such as meats, poultry, eggs, and dairy products.
What foods are high in cholesterol?
Cholesterol is a waxy, fat-like substance that occurs naturally in all parts of the body. It’s necessary for the proper function of cells and is used to create hormones and vitamin D. However, too much cholesterol in the blood can lead to heart disease.
Most of the cholesterol in the blood is made by the liver, but some comes from the food we eat. Animal products, such as meat, poultry, fish, eggs and dairy, are high in cholesterol. Plant foods do not contain cholesterol.
Saturated fats and trans fats can also increase blood cholesterol levels. Saturated fats are found in animal products, such as butter, whole milk and fatty meats. Trans fats are found in processed foods made with partially hydrogenated vegetable oils, such as some margarines, shortening and snack foods.
Here are some tips to help you limit your intake of foods high in cholesterol:
-Choose lean cuts of meat and skinless poultry whenever possible.
-Remove the skin from poultry before cooking.
-Bake, broil or grill meats instead of frying them.
-Limit egg yolks to no more than four per week – use egg whites or egg substitutes for some meals instead.
-Use low-fat or non-fat dairy products instead of whole milk products.
– When cooking with oils, choose olive or canola oil instead of butter or margarine
How does cholesterol affect the body?
Cholesterol is a type of fat that is found in every cell in the body. It is used by the body to make hormones and other substances. Although cholesterol is necessary for the body to function, too much cholesterol can be harmful.
Excess cholesterol can build up in the arteries, making them hard and narrow. This buildup is called plaque. Plaque can eventually block the flow of blood through the arteries. When this happens, it can cause a heart attack or stroke.
The best way to avoid these problems is to eat a healthy diet and maintain a healthy weight. Foods that are high in cholesterol should be limited or avoided altogether. These foods include:
What are the health risks of high cholesterol?
Cholesterol is a type of fat found in your blood. Your body needs cholesterol to build healthy cells, but too much cholesterol can be harmful. High cholesterol can lead to heart disease, stroke, and other health problems.
You can get high cholesterol from the food you eat, as well as from your body’s natural production of cholesterol. Eating foods that are high in saturated and trans fats can raise your cholesterol level. So can gaining too much weight and not getting enough exercise.
Certain medical conditions can also raise your cholesterol levels. These include diabetes, an underactive thyroid gland (hypothyroidism), and polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS). If you have one of these conditions, you may need to take medication to lower your cholesterol.
You can check your cholesterol levels with a simple blood test. If your cholesterol is high, your doctor may recommend lifestyle changes and/or medication to help lower it. Making healthy choices — such as eating less saturated and trans fat, losing weight if you need to, and exercising regularly — can help reduce your risk of developing heart disease or having a stroke.
How can high cholesterol be prevented?
There are a few things you can do to prevent high cholesterol:
-Eat a healthy diet that includes plenty of fruits, vegetables, and whole grains
-Avoid saturated fats, trans fats, and excess sugar
-Maintain a healthy weight
If you have already been diagnosed with high cholesterol, your doctor may prescribe medication to help lower your cholesterol levels.
How is high cholesterol treated?
While dietary changes are the first step in treating high cholesterol, medication may also be necessary. Statins are the most common type of cholesterol-lowering medication. These drugs work by blocking an enzyme in the liver that is needed to make cholesterol. Statins can be very effective at reducing LDL cholesterol levels and are generally well tolerated. Other types of cholesterol-lowering medications include niacin, bile acid sequestrants, and fibric acid derivatives.
What are the side effects of cholesterol-lowering medication?
There are several types of cholesterol-lowering medication available, each with its own potential side effects. Statins are the most common type of cholesterol-lowering drug, and they can cause fatigue, joint pain, and gastrointestinal problems. Other cholesterol-lowering drugs, such as fibrates and niacin, can cause skin flushing and gastrointestinal upset.
What lifestyle changes can help lower cholesterol?
There are several lifestyle changes you can make to help lower your cholesterol. These include:
What home remedies can help lower cholesterol?
If you’re looking for ways to lower cholesterol, you may first want to consider making some changes to your diet. Many foods are high in cholesterol, including fatty meats, full-fat dairy products, eggs, and shellfish. You can also help lower cholesterol by eating more fiber-rich foods, such as oats, barley, and legumes. There are a few home remedies that may also help.
When to see a doctor for cholesterol treatment?
If you have high cholesterol, you’re not alone. In the United States, 1 in 3 adults has it. High cholesterol often has no signs or symptoms. So it’s important to get your cholesterol checked starting at age 20.
Cholesterol is a waxy substance that’s found in all the cells in your body. Your liver makes most of it. Cholesterol is used to help make hormones and cell membranes and other vital substances in your body. But when you have too much LDL cholesterol (the “bad” cholesterol), it can build up on the walls of your arteries and form plaque. This buildup narrows your arteries and makes it harder for blood to flow through them — which raises your risk for heart attack and stroke.
You can help keep your cholesterol in check by eating healthy foods and exercising regularly — both key components of a heart-healthy lifestyle. In some cases, your doctor also may prescribe cholesterol-lowering medications to help reduce your LDL levels.