Posts Tagged ‘cholesterol’

Different Types of Fats

Posted in Nutrition on October 3rd, 2010 by marie – Be the first to comment

Saturated Fats
Foods that are high in saturated fat can raise your blood cholesterol. Try to keep your intake of these foods low. Saturated fat foods include:

  • High fat dairy products like whole milk, cream, butter, cheese, and regular ice cream
  • Fatty fresh and processed meats
  • Skin and fat of poultry
  • Lard
  • Palm oil
  • Coconut oil

Dietary Cholesterol
Foods that are high in cholesterol can raise your blood cholesterol. High cholesterol foods include:

  • Liver and other organ meats
  • Egg yolks
  • Dairy fats

Trans Fatty Acids
Foods that are high in trans fatty acids can raise your blood cholesterol. Trans fat foods include:

  • Foods that are high in partially hydrogenated vegetable oils, such as many hard margarines and shortenings. Foods with a high amount of these ingredients include some commercially fried foods and some bakery goods.

Unsaturated Fats
Unsaturated fats (oils) don’t raise your blood cholesterol. Unsaturated fats occur in vegetable oils, most nuts, olives, avocados, and fatty fish like salmon. Unsaturated oils include both monounsaturated fats and polyunsaturated fats.

  • Some oils high in monounsaturated fats include:
    Olive oil, canola oil, sunflower oil, and peanut oil.
  • Some good sources of polyunsaturated fats include:
    Vegetable oils such as soybean oil, corn oil, and cottonseed oil and many kinds of nuts

Some fish, such as salmon, tuna, and mackerel, contain omega-3 fatty acids that are being studied to determine if they offer protection against heart disease.

Use moderate amounts of food high in unsaturated fats, taking care to avoid excess calories.

Did You Inherit Your High Cholesterol?

Posted in Diseases & Disorders on September 25th, 2010 by marie – Be the first to comment

Anyone can have high cholesterol, it’s not just from the meat you eat. Even a vegetarian can have high cholesterol, especially if it runs in their family.

Eating a healthy diet and exercising is important to help lower cholesterol, but cholesterol doesn’t just come from food. Cholesterol is produced in your body, and also cholesterol is based on your family history.

Many people need medications to help lower their cholesterol levels, along with eating right and exercising. read more »

Know Your Lifesaving Numbers

Posted in Diseases & Disorders on September 12th, 2010 by marie – Be the first to comment

Five lifesaving numbers you should know about yourself!!

1. Blood Pressure Levels
Know your blood pressure numbers!!
High blood pressure, or hypertension, is a serious health condition that many people don’t know they have. High blood pressure can lead to serious health conditions including coronary heart disease, kidney disease, and stroke.

  • Normal blood pressure is 120/80 or lower.
  • Pre-hypertension is between 120 – 139 for the top number, or between 80 – 89 for the bottom number.
  • High blood pressure is 140/90 or higher.

2. Waist size
Know your waist measurement number!!
Your waist measurement does not determine if you are overweight, but it does indicate if you have excess fat in your abdomen. This is important because extra fat around your waist may increase health risks even more than fat anywhere else on your body. Belly fat sends a toxic stream of chemicals into your whole body. Measure your waist above your hipbone and below your ribcage where your natural waistline is, not where your belt is. Have good posture and suck in your stomach since the fat you are measuring is deep inside your belly.

  • Women with a waist measurement of more than 35 inches, and men with a waist measurement of more than 40 inches, may have an increased risk for chronic diseases like heart disease, diabetes, and more.
  • Ideal waist size for women – 32 and 1/2 inches.
  • Ideal waist size for men – 35 inches.

3. Weight
Know how much you weigh!!
Obesity (excess body fat) can cause many health problems including a higher risk for premature death, heart disease, type 2 diabetes, stroke, gout, high blood pressure (hypertension), gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD), problems with cholesterol and triglycerides, gallbladder disease, and certain kinds of cancers. Using the body mass index calculator for adults, 20 years old and older, is one way to tell whether you are at a healthy weight, overweight, or obese.

4. Cholesterol
Know your cholesterol numbers!!
High cholesterol is a major risk factor for heart disease and stroke.
Desirable Cholesterol Levels

  • HDL (good cholesterol) 40 mg/dL or higher
  • Total cholesterol Less than 200 mg/dL
  • LDL (bad cholesterol) Less than 100 mg/dL (Optimal level)
  • Triglycerides Less than 150 mg/dL

5. Fasting Blood Sugar
Get your blood tested after you have fasted for 8 hours. This will show if you are at risk for diabetes. Diabetes is a chronic disease that can lead to cardiac disease, kidney failure, blindness, an impaired immune system, and nerve problems.

  • Your blood sugar level needs to be below 100.

Meat, Fish, Poultry & Cholesterol

Posted in Diseases & Disorders, Nutrition on April 30th, 2010 by marie – Be the first to comment

Blood Cholesterol Level

To lower your blood cholesterol level, choose only the leanest meats, fish, shellfish, and poultry. Even the leanest of these have saturated fat and cholesterol, so limit the total amount you eat to 5 ounces or less per day.

Often when people cut back on meat they eat cheese instead, thinking they are cutting back on saturated fat and cholesterol. A serving of most natural and many processed cheeses have less cholesterol, but more than six times the saturated fat in a serving of chicken without the skin and almost twice that of lean round steak.

Poultry

  • Choose chicken and turkey without skin or remove skin before eating.
  • White meat contains less saturated fat than the dark meat.
  • Limit goose and duck, which are high in saturated fat, even with the skin removed.
  • Some chicken and turkey hot dogs are lower in saturated fat and total fat than pork and beef hot dogs. There are also “lean” beef hot dogs and vegetarian (made with tofu) franks that are low in fat and saturated fat.

Fish and Shellfish

  • Some fish, like cod, have less saturated fat than chicken or meat.
  • Shellfish varies in cholesterol content. Shellfish have little saturated fat and total fat.
  • Shrimp can be enjoyed occasionally provided you eat less than 200 milligrams of cholesterol a day. For example, 3 ounces of steamed shrimp has 167 milligrams of cholesterol.

Meat Substitute

  • Dry peas and beans and tofu (bean curd) are great meat substitutes that are low in saturated fat and cholesterol.
  • Dry peas and beans have a lot of fiber, which can help to lower blood cholesterol.
  • Try adding 1/2 cup of beans to pasta, soups, casseroles, and vegetable dishes.
  • Tofu takes on the flavor of marinades well. Try marinating tofu in a nonfat dressing or a tangy sauce and grilling or baking for a heart healthy dish.

Good Cholesterol & Bad Cholesterol

Posted in Nutrition on April 27th, 2010 by marie – Be the first to comment

Good Cholesterol or HDL

  • HDL (High-density lipoproteins) cholesterol (good cholesterol) is a waxy, fat-like substance that occurs naturally in all parts of the body, including the brain, nerves, muscle, skin, liver, intestines, and heart. High levels of HDL reduce the risk of heart disease and stroke.
  • Your body needs only a small amount of cholesterol to produce many hormones, vitamin D, and the bile acids that help to digest fat.
  • A desirable cholesterol level is lower than 200 mg/dL.

Bad Cholesterol or LDL

  • Too much LDL (Low-density lipoproteins) cholesterol (bad cholesterol) in your blood can build up on the walls of your arteries and can narrow your arteries or even block them, which can lead to heart disease and stroke.
  • People of all ages and backgrounds can get high cholesterol.
  • High total cholesterol is 240 mg/dL and above.
  • About 1 of every 6 adult Americans has high blood cholesterol.
  • More women than men have high cholesterol in the United States.
  • Cholesterol levels tend to rise as you get older.
  • High cholesterol usually has no signs or symptoms. Your doctor can do a simple blood test to check your cholesterol levels.

You can prevent high cholesterol – or reduce your levels if they are high.

  • Get a blood test. Everyone should have their cholesterol levels checked starting at the age of 20. The test is a blood test called a lipoprotein profile.
  • Eat a healthy diet. Eat less saturated fat and trans fat.
  • Maintain a healthy weight.
  • Exercise regularly.
  • Don’t smoke.
  • If you have high cholesterol, your doctor may prescribe medications in addition to lifestyle changes.

Desirable Cholesterol Levels

  • HDL (good cholesterol) 40 mg/dL or higher
  • Total cholesterol Less than 200 mg/dL
  • LDL (bad cholesterol) Less than 100 mg/dL (Optimal level)
  • Triglycerides Less than 150 mg/dL

Eggs & Cholesterol

Posted in Diseases & Disorders, Nutrition on March 30th, 2010 by marie – Be the first to comment

Egg yolks are high in dietary cholesterol, and one egg has about 213 milligrams of cholesterol in it.

You should limit egg yolks to no more than 2 yolks per week. This includes the egg yolks in baked goods and processed foods. Check the label to see how much cholesterol the food contains or ask the bakery if the recipe uses whole eggs. Limit these types of foods for occasional treats.

On the ohter hand… egg whites have no cholesterol in them, and you can substitute them for whole eggs in recipes. Two egg whites are equal to one whole egg. Two egg whites have the same protein content as 1 ounce of meat.

Or… you can also use cholesterol-free egg substitute in place of whole eggs. In many baked goods, you can’t tell the difference.

Are All Fats the Same?

Posted in Nutrition on February 3rd, 2010 by marie – Be the first to comment

All fats are not the same. Fat is a major source of energy for the body and aids in the absorption of vitamins A, D, E, and K, and carotenoids. Both animal and plant-derived food products contain fat, and when eaten in moderation, fat is important for proper growth, development, and maintenance of good health.

As a food ingredient, fat provides taste, consistency, and stability and helps us feel full.

Parents should be aware that fats are an especially important source of calories and nutrients for infants and toddlers up to 2 years of age, who have the highest energy needs per unit of body weight of any age group.

Saturated fats and trans fats raise LDL (“bad”) cholesterol levels in the blood, thereby increasing the risk of heart disease. Dietary cholesterol also contributes to heart disease.

Unsaturated fats, such as monounsaturated and polyunsaturated, do not raise LDL (“bad”) cholesterol and are beneficial when consumed in moderation. Therefore, it is advisable to choose foods low in saturated fat, trans fat, and cholesterol as part of a healthful diet.

Look at the Nutrition Facts panel when comparing foods, and choose foods with the lowest amounts of saturated fat, trans fat, and cholesterol. Health experts recommend you keep your intake of these nutrients as low as possible while consuming a nutritionally adequate diet. These experts do recognize though, that eliminating these fats entirely from your diet is not practical because they are unavoidable in ordinary diets.

Compare Spreads! Example:
Check the Nutrition Facts label for Saturated Fat, Trans Fat and Cholesterol

A Few Random Facts

Posted in Diseases & Disorders, General, Nutrition, Vitamins - Supplements on January 1st, 2010 by marie – Be the first to comment

Glaucoma
Glaucoma is a group of diseases that can damage the eye’s optic nerve and result in vision loss and blindness. Glaucoma occurs when the normal fluid pressure inside the eyes slowly rises. With early detection and treatment, you can often protect your eyes against serious vision loss.

Calcium
Calcium-fortified orange juice is an excellent source of calcium. Most brands provide about 300 mg (milligrams) of calcium per cup, about the same as in a glass of milk or 6 ounces of yogurt. The recommended dietary allowance for calcium is 1,000 to 1,500 mg daily.

Carbohydrates
For some people, eating too many carbohydrates can lower their “good” cholesterol, called HDL (high-density lipoprotein) which helps keep cholesterol from building up in their arteries, and raise their triglycerides, which is another form of fat in their blood.

Bad Cholesterol
LDL – low-density lipoprotein – is the “bad” cholesterol, which is the main source of cholesterol buildup and blockage in the arteries.

Alcohol
Alcoholic drinks have calories but no nutrients. Drinking alcohol can raise triglycerides. Too much alcohol can cause high blood pressure, which increases your risk for heart disease and stroke. If you have alcoholic drinks on an empty stomach, they can make your blood glucose level go too low. Alcoholic drinks also can raise your blood fats.

Caffeine
Caffeine dehydrates your body. Limit black coffee intake to 1 or 2 cups a day. If you drink more than that, the caffeine not only dehydrates you, it can raise your blood pressure. Also, energy drinks contain high levels of caffeine and other stimulants that can dehydrate your body.

Fat
Fats, such as monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats, can actually lower blood cholesterol levels.

Fiber
Eating fiber can help lower cholesterol.

Dietary Cholesterol
Dietary cholesterol is found in foods of animal origin, including meat, fish, poultry, eggs, and dairy products. Plant foods, such as grains, fruits and vegetables, and oils from these sources contain no dietary cholesterol.

Cardiovascular
The term cardiovascular refers to your heart and circulatory systems.

Diet Soft Drinks
Some diet soft drinks can contain a small number of calories that are not listed on the nutrition facts label.

Obesity
The percentage of children and teens that are overweight has more than doubled in the past 30 years.

Aerobics
Activities that increase your heart rate and breathing for an extended period of time can be called:

  • Aerobics
  • Aerobic exercises
  • Endurance exercises
  • Endurance activities

Stomach
The stomach can hold about 3 pints of food at one time.

Small Intestine
The small intestine is nearly 22 feet long.

Exercises That Build Muscle
Exercises that build muscle have a variety of names, including:

  • Strength training
  • Strength exercises
  • Resistance training
  • Weight training
  • Weight lifting
  • Muscle building
  • Muscle strengthening activity
  • Muscular strength
  • Endurance exercises

Muscle
Muscle is active tissue that consumes calories while stored fat uses very little energy.