As a kid we loved gobbling up those cookies, pastries, wafers and what not. We never really bothered about how much calories we are ingesting and how fat we are gonna look. The primary reason is because we played outdoors that used to cut down all the abnormal fat in the body. No matter how much we played we never really got tired but that’s not the situation right now. Things have now changed and all the outdoor games are pushed indoors which shows increased rate in obesity right from childhood.
Obesity is one of the most common health problems suffered by many people all around the globe and if you check the underlying factors, the primary one is undoubtedly cholesterol. Rarely will you see genetic or any other health issues lurking around.
Did you know that 1 out of 3 Americans has metabolic syndrome and a blend of many CVD risk factors relating to overweight and insulin resistance? To put it straight, the total cost of cardiovascular disease in 2008 was estimated around $300 billion. Imagine how many pills are popped around on a daily basis to cut down the risk of high cholesterol and cardio diseases.
How to eat without eating too much?
Now I assume you had taken a blood test where it is reported that you are having high levels of total and LDL cholesterol. Time to set things straight as you are finding yourself nearing the grave (pun intended).
Now your doctor may suggest low cal diet, exercise and so on. This means cutting out on all the “good” bad foods (baked goods, cheese, fried stuff). Yup, it is and there is no mercy. But that doesn’t mean you have to sip up blatant soups and choke all the Brussel sprouts down your throat.
There are alternatives that will take the pressure off your back. This way you won’t feel like you are stressing out about your body and on yourself.
Use walnuts instead of croutons
Carbs are one of the main reasons for high LDL i.e. the bad cholesterol. Make your salad much more interesting by replacing croutons with walnuts that are high in polyunsaturated fat (a good fat) that can lower your LDL while boosting the healthier ones.
Try Red wine instead of cocktails
Studies say that moderate amount of alcohol can raise the level of HDL. However, if you are backing it up with margaritas or mixing drinks with fruit juice then you are putting yourself at high risk. This is because such hard drinks come with high amount of carb that will raise the “bad cholesterol” in the body. Try switching to red wine that has about one-tenth carb you see in margarita PLUS you will be deriving excellent antioxidants such as flavonoids that have the ability to lower the LDL and boost HDL in the body.
DO BEAR IN MIND to limit your daily alcohol intake to 2 glasses (men) and 1 glass (for women) says, American Heart Association due to the harmful effects of alcohol once gone overboard.
Say NO to cheese and crackers
Many are habituated to a pre-dinner snack and it is difficult for them to cut them out for personal reasons whatever it may. If you are addicted to having a bit of cracker and cheese, realize that it comes with high saturated fat that are the primary culprits of raising the bad cholesterol.
Go with few almonds or pistachios or edamame (the boiled baby soybeans) that is very much low in saturated fat and has shown to boost the HDL levels in the body. For those who are not aware Edamame is a common pre-appetizer in Japanese restaurants? One cup of edamame comes with 25 grams of soy protein that lowers the LDL (though the evidence is contradictory). Get frozen, dump in boiling water and drain after 5 minutes. This is as better as it gets.
Lose the chips and appreciate popcorn
While tortilla chips have been considered as a healthy alternative to potato chips, isn’t it better to munch on a home-made snack that is less on calories and scrumptiously tasty as well? An air-popped popcorn has 80% less saturated fat than tortilla chips and twice the fiber.
Go scallops over chicken
Both turkey and chicken have less saturated fat than red meat but they are not void entirely of cholesterol. So the best way to cut down on low-density lipoprotein is by consuming more fish that are low in fat and offer you a high amount of omega 3 fatty acids that are listed among the building blocks of your body.
Opt for Quinoa over rice
A lower cholesterol food, quinoa (pronounced “Keen-wah”) is a south-American seed that has 25% more the fiber and 60% more the protein than brown rice (one cup of serving). There are many benefits of quinoa right from lowering cholesterol to providing less carb and more of health benefits.
I admit it might seem difficult in the earlier stage and you will have the tendency to go back to the old ways but make sure that you stick to this “new change” for cutting down the total cholesterol in your report and betterment of health in the years to come.