Increasingly larger numbers of people suffer from heart disease as a consequence of high blood cholesterol levels. There are many factors that enable the accumulation of cholesterol inside the organism, but the major cause is considered to be unhealthy diet. Unhealthy diet and bad eating habits can considerably increase blood cholesterol levels.
Cholesterol is produced by the liver and it is required inside the body for fulfilling several roles: cellular protection, hormonal synthesis (testosterone and estrogen), vitamin synthesis and fat digestion. The organism needs very small quantities of cholesterol to sustain its normal activity and inappropriate diet can quickly enable cholesterol to accumulate in excess. The problem with cholesterol is that it can’t be dissolved by the body fluids and it is also difficult to eliminate. When in excess, cholesterol enters the bloodstream and deposits in different places inside the body. Cholesterol can form plaque inside arteries by adhering to the inner arterial walls, causing blockage. If cholesterol deposits inside the coronary arteries (heart arteries), there is a very high risk of heart disease.
A healthy diet and appropriate exercise are vital in reducing blood cholesterol levels. It is very important to eat properly, as high cholesterol food can quickly increase blood cholesterol levels. You should consume only low cholesterol foods and products that contain unsaturated fat. Many foods contain high levels of cholesterol: meats, eggs, dairy products, sweets. Also, foods that are rich in saturated fat can also facilitate the accumulation of cholesterol inside the body: organ meats, pork, poultry.
Low cholesterol foods should replace foods that contain high quantities of cholesterol and saturated fat. Sweets contain simple carbohydrates which increase body fat deposits and facilitate the accumulation of body cholesterol. It is advised to consume at most 300 mg of cholesterol a day. Considering the fact that a single egg contains around 300 mg of cholesterol, eating properly can be quite tricky. Not at all! You should note that only foods of animal origin contain cholesterol, while vegetal foods are cholesterol free. Although vegetables and fruits contain fat, they actually don’t have any cholesterol. Low cholesterol foods also contain less saturated fat and therefore they are a lot healthier for the organism.
It is very difficult to follow a diet based only on fruits and vegetables. To diversify your diet, you can consume low cholesterol foods such as: egg whites, lean meat, fish, chicken. Other low cholesterol foods are skim milk and low-fat yogurt. You should avoid eating fried foods, as they are very unhealthy. Bake or boil low cholesterol foods and eat plenty of vegetable soups. Home-cooked meals should be preferred over supermarket foods. However, if you don’t have time to cook for yourself every day, there are various low cholesterol food products available in supermarkets. It is important to understand that processed, low cholesterol foods available in convenience-stores can actually contain high quantities of saturated fat and they aren’t a very healthy option. Although you can consume such food products once in a while, your diet should be based mainly on healthy, cholesterol free or low cholesterol foods.