In a culture full of drive thrus and junk food commercials, high cholesterol is a concern for many Americans. Cholesterol is a necessary substance for your body; it helps make hormones, bile acids, vitamin D, and other substances. However, too much cholesterol can build up in your arteries, causing plaque, which hardens your arteries and increases your risk of heart attack and stroke.
If you have been told by your doctor that you need to lower your cholesterol, you may feel like you will never be able to eat delicious foods again. While you should not load up on fried foods, candy, and baked goods, there are ways to make food choices that are both delicious and nutritious. In addition to making certain dietary changes, you should also get at least 150 minutes of moderate exercise per week. For a gym membership, try Spunk Fitness today!
What to eat:
- Diverse range of fruits and vegetables
- Whole grain foods
- Low-fat milk products
- Lean meats and poultry
- Fish such as salmon, tuna, and sardines
- Unsalted nuts and seeds
- Canola, corn, or olive oils
What to avoid:
- Sodium-filled foods
- Red meat
- Full-fat dairy products
- Baked goods
- Saturated oils
- Fried foods
It is important that you pay attention to food labels when you are trying to lower your cholesterol. You want to look for foods that are lower in saturated fat, trans fat, total fat, cholesterol, and calories. You also want to check the ingredients list to be sure that the food you are consuming is not extremely processed, which can up the amount of sodium.
As with any diet, it is about moderation. You do not have to cut yourself entirely from treats; in fact, this type of attitude tends to cause people to give up on improving their diet entirely. While the majority of what you eat should be healthy, you can still occasionally indulge in small portions of the not-so-good stuff.
When you need support for your health and fitness goals, we can help. Come into Spunk Fitness and try our gym membership today!