Cholesterol is a fatty substance found in the human body which helps in the production of hormones, bile, and vitamin D. It is an important component of all cells in the body. It provides strength and flexibility to the cell membrane. Meat, egg and dairy products are rich sources of cholesterol. It can be good (HDL, high-density lipoprotein) and bad (LDL, low-density lipoproteins) cholesterol, which should be at normal levels in the body to live a healthy life. Few dietary items like full-fat milk, fried items, cheese and others that should be avoided when you have high cholesterol.
What Should You Avoid Eating With High Cholesterol?
Cholesterol is an important component found in human body. It is required in specific levels to produce hormones, vitamin D and chemicals that break down fatty acids. It provides strength and flexibility to the cell membrane. It is found in animal products such as eggs, dairy items, meat, etc. it is also found in fried items, oils, fish, nuts seeds, beans, etc.
The foods that you should avoid eating when you have high cholesterol are-
Eggs And Meat – Avoid eating eggs and meat when you have high cholesterol. Whole egg contains cholesterol and saturated fat. Egg yolk should be avoided as it contains saturated fats. Egg whites should not be avoided as they are high in protein. Red Meat has a high content of cholesterol. When they are fried, the levels of saturated fat also increase and should be avoided.
Milk Products – Avoid milk products when you have high cholesterol. Milk products that have whole fat should be discouraged. These milk products are butter, cheese, yogurt, full cream milk. They raise the levels of LDL in the body.
Oils – Avoid oils that have a high amount of trans-fat and unsaturated fat to prevent accumulation of bad cholesterol in the body. Hydrogenated and partial hydrogenated oils are also harmful to health.
Fast Foods – Fried food items such as French fries, fried chicken, etc. and burgers have a high content of bad cholesterol and should be avoided.
Sugary Items – Food items that contain high sugar levels such as pastries, cookies, cakes, muffins, pies, doughnuts, etc. are prepared from saturated fats. They directly increase bad cholesterol levels.
Cholesterol is produced in the liver. However, individual genetic makeup and lifestyle lead to accumulation of cholesterol in the blood vessels that may lead to blocking of blood resulting in heart diseases, stroke or heart attack. However, studies state that Dietary cholesterol has only a 25% impact on the cholesterol levels in our body.
The cholesterol is of two types:
Good Cholesterol (High-Density Lipoproteins, HDL) – they pick up cholesterol from every part of the body and deposit them in the liver for digestion.
Bad Cholesterol (Low-Density Lipoproteins, LDL) – they accumulate the same type of cholesterol in the body which builds up and causes blood vessels and heart-related diseases.
Cholesterol levels are determined by the type of fat intake. There are following types of fat that influence levels of cholesterol in our body.
Saturated Fats – this type of fat lead to more production of bad cholesterol. They are high in bad cholesterol. It is found in animal products such as dairy products and meat.
Unsaturated Fats – they have more HDL than LDL. They help in re-absorption and break down of LDL. They are found in fish, nuts, plants, seeds, beans, and vegetable oils.
Trans Fats – they are solidified vegetable oils that have a high content of LDL. They are found in fried food, packed food, and baked food.
According to the American Heart Association, unsaturated fats should be chosen over saturated and Trans fats.
Cholesterol is needed in the human body to produce hormones, vitamin D and other substances. High levels of cholesterol especially bad cholesterol in our body can lead to heart-related diseases. Food items high in saturated fats and Trans fats and others discussed above should be avoided.
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