Monday, April 13, 2009

Cholesterol Busting Foods

Achieve Low Cholesterol With The Basic Tips

Author: Ray La Foy

To get your cholesterol to the right level, you need to follow a few basic rules. It takes a bit of effort to remember initially but soon becomes part of your daily routine. You must be aware that cutting down on cholesterol-rich foods does not mean cutting down on food. Once you approach this diet as just a changed one rather than a starvation diet, you can set about making it work for you.

The first step is to shop right. That means paying close attention to the labels. This could take a bit of time in the beginning, when you have to look at quite a few before you decide to buy or reject. You soon get the hang if it however and begin to automatically steer your way towards the food that is good for you.

The labels on all food packs tell you the nutritional value of the contents. You'll see how much of carbohydrates, proteins, fats, vitamins and minerals it contains. Steer clear of animal fat in foodstuffs, as well as trans fats. When you limit the consumption of saturated fats, your cholesterol levels start going down. Keep in mind that the body, too produces cholesterol so you need to offset that by cutting down a lot when you start your diet. As far as taste goes, trans fats make for better texture, consistency and taste in a lot of foods. You just need to find substitutes that appeal to you just as much which don't contain these harmful fats.

How about sugar? Start by substituting it in a few items of food, then go on to more and more as you get used to it. Honey is a natural sweetener as is unrefined sugar. Food with corn syrup is avoidable as it is high in carbohydrates. While you're at it, cut down on the salt as well, as it increases the blood pressure and together with high cholesterol, could lead to serious health risks. Processed foods like meats contain a lot of it.

Try to put "good fats" into your diet, like olive oil and avocados. Also include fruits, vegetables and fiber to aid digestion. What you need in your daily diet is a balance. Never eat till you are stuffed. Always get up from the table when you're full but feel you can eat just a little more. If you find every meal leaves you feeling too full, eat many small meals a day, punctuating your regular food with fruit breaks, soups or salads. Some people substitute butter with spreads made from sitostanol, a plant-based derivative that is supposed to curb the absorption of fat.

It all boils down to an issue of balance. Your body produces cholesterol. You've got high cholesterol. So you need to take in less than you are doing right now and maybe take in a few cholesterol-busting foods as well to keep the balance. Once you've managed a regimen that brings the cholesterol equilibrium back into your life, make sure you keep at it to make it stay that way.

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