HeALThy recipes
NUTRITION TIPS
NUTRITION Q&A
5 ingredients
30-minute
recipes
Good For your Heart
low
cholesterol
low fat
low sodium
Main Ingredient
beef
chicken
fish & seafood
pork
vegetarian
Meal
breakfast
sandwiches
salads
soups
appetizers
drinks
main dishes
side dishes
desserts
holiday
recipes
Don't Miss Our Editors Picks!
Meet the Experts
Sign Me Up! FREE-NEWSLETTER
Take a Quiz
Heart  Healthy Living
Our final issue goes on sale May 16, 2010
IN THIS ISSUE...
CONTACT US
Bookmark and Share
Healthy recipes > cooking & nutrition tips >

The low Cholesterol diet

By Madhu Gadia, M.S., R.D.

Most likely your diagnosis of high cholesterol came with a doctor’s recommendation to follow a low-cholesterol diet. But what does that mean?

A diagnosis of high cholesterol can be a very scary thing. After all, high cholesterol is linked to an increased risk of heart disease and heart attack. But there is something you can do today, right now, to help lower your cholesterol without medication: Improve your diet.

A diet that is low in total fat—especially saturated fat, trans fat, and cholesterol—is technically a low-cholesterol diet. Ideally, that means your daily fat intake should be less than 35 percent of your total calories. When choosing fat sources in your diet, it is best to choose fats that are polyunsaturated or monounsaturated. Moderate use of these help protect the heart by increasing the level of “good” HDL cholesterol in your blood.

Cholesterol: We get cholesterol from two sources: what the body produces and what we get from the foods we eat. Cholesterol only comes from foods of animal origin, such as meat, poultry, seafood, and dairy products. Try to limit your dietary cholesterol intake to 300 milligrams per day.

Saturated fats: Fats that are solid at room temperature are typically saturated. Saturated fats raise your cholesterol more than anything else in your diet. Seven percent or less of your total calories should come from saturated fats. These fats are found in animal products and in some plant products. Animal sources of saturated fats include egg yolks, cheese, butter, cream, whole milk, ice cream, fatty meats, and poultry skin. Plant sources include coconut oil, palm kernel oil, palm oil, and cocoa butter.

Unsaturated fats: There are two major kinds of unsaturated fats: polyunsaturated and monounsaturated. Studies indicate that both of these fats help lower cholesterol when substituted for saturated and trans fats. Good sources of polyunsaturated fats are safflower, sunflower, corn, and soybean oil. The major vegetable oil sources of monounsaturated fats are olive, canola, and peanut oil. Use a moderate amount of unsaturated fats to keep your total fat intake low.

Trans fats: Fats such as margarines and shortenings are hydrogenated and are called trans fats. Hydrogenation is a process that changes liquid oils to a solid or semisolid form. Recent research has indicated that trans fats are similar to saturated fats and also raise your cholesterol, so use them sparingly. Look for trans-fat-free margarines and shortening. You can also use tub margarines that are semisolid and have less trans fat than stick margarine.

Continued on Page 2 : Low-Cholesterol Food Guide
 
Pay $0 For Your Second Year
All content on this Web site, including medical opinion and any other health-related information, is for informational purposes only and should not be considered to be a specific diagnosis or treatment plan for any individual situation. Use of this site and the information contained herein does not create a doctor-patient relationship. Always seek the direct advice of your own doctor in connection with any questions or issues you may have regarding your own health or the health of others.
 
Pay $0 for your second year!
 
 

Sponsored Links

 
 
 
Better Homes & Gardens Network