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Lower The Fat Content In Your Diet
It is hard to focus on lowering cholesterol levels, and no time is worse than the holiday season. Our bodies and all our senses are tempted to overindulge. After all, who can resist the mashed potatoes, gravy, and stuffing? Not to mention the calorie-laden sweet potato casserole and creamed corn! Our family holiday gatherings are big and everyone brings something. At the last one there was an array of 7 different desserts to top off the huge meal.
Now is a good time to review which foods can help lower cholesterol. You can still eat well, feel satisfied, but stick to the foods that will help bring down those numbers. Diet alone may not reduce cholesterol to a normal level, but it is the obvious place to start.
Fruits and Vegetables:
You should have 4-5 servings of fruits and vegetables daily. This food group has vitamins, antioxidants, and a good fiber content. You can choose from a wide variety of fruits such as apples, oranges, mangoes, pineapple, grapefruit, or berries. Apples, bananas and berries are high fiber fruits, and are good for the intestine as well.
Leafy green vegetables like spinach, Swiss chard, beet greens ,etc are very good. So is cauliflower, cabbage, broccoli, onions, garlic, and tomatoes.They don't have a high calorie content, and have little or no cholesterol.
Salads also should be mentioned a good choice but skip the high fat salad dressings. Try a SMALL amount of olive oil and vinegar instead. No bacon bits, processed cheeses or croutons, either! If cheese is a must for you, get the low fat variety and use sparingly.
Choose the leanest cuts of meat and poultry. Chicken should have all the skin and fat removed, and grilling is the best method of cooking. It allows the fat fall away during the cooking process. Goose and duck are very high in saturated fats, even with the skin removed, so limit your consumption of these meats.
Most fish is lower in saturated fat than meats or poultry. Just be aware some shellfish - like shrimp - have a higher cholesterol content. About 16 large shrimp would give you about 160 milligrams (mgm) of cholesterol. The American Heart Association recommends no more than 300 mgm of cholesterol daily. Other shellfish do not contain that much cholesterol; for example eat 4 ounces of crab and you'll get around 110 mgm of cholesterol, or about a third of your recommended daily allowance.
Grains, Beans and Nuts:
Grains, dried peas and beans are generally low in saturated fat but higher in fiber. Use the whole wheat bread, and stay away from the sweeter breads made with finely processed white flour, butter, and eggs.
Some breakfast cereals, such as the granola have coconut milk and nuts added which increases the content of saturated fats. Whole wheat, grain nuts, and bran flakes are all better choices. Buy cereal that's unsweetened. That's added calories you don't need. Use 1% or skim milk and an artificial sweetener (if you must).
Snacking on nuts like almonds, cashews, pecans, walnuts, or macadamia nuts is OK, but in moderation. These nuts are higher in calories and in saturated fats. It's the better kind of saturated fat, but still the calories can add up pretty quickly.
Another good way to lower cholesterol is to add a natural supplement like Unicity Balance Cholesterol. This is a powder high in fiber you mix with 8 oz of water and take before 2 meals a day. It also comes packed with good vitamins and other ingredients especially designed to lower cholesterol. If diet alone does not seem to be working, then adding Bios Life is a good next step. There are few side effects with Bios Life, and it is listed in the Physicians Desk Reference (PDR). Visit the Bios Life Products category for all the varities of Bios Life and Unicity Balance we have.
It's hard to make changes in eating habits. Don't try and make all the changes at once as that often is hard to sustain and is more apt to end in failure. Start gradually adding these suggested changes, and over time it should become a more natural part of your overall eating pattern.