Cholesterol is a fatty substance found in all of your body’s cells. It is an important part of cell membranes and helps your body digest food. Your liver makes most of the cholesterol in your blood.
Types Of Fats For Cholesterol
You need some cholesterol to live, but having too much can increase your risk of heart disease and stroke. The amount of cholesterol in your blood is measured in milligrams per deciliter (mg/dL).
There are two types of fat: good and bad.
Good fats, like monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats, can help keep your heart healthy. They’re found in sources such as fish and nuts.
Bad fats, on the other hand, are known to contribute to heart disease and other health issues. Some bad fats include saturated fats (found in animal products such as red meat) and trans fats (found in processed foods).
According to the American Heart Association (AHA), there are many ways to reduce your risk of heart disease by eating less saturated fat and trans fat. This includes limiting your intake of these types of fat and replacing them with healthier alternatives that contain unsaturated fats.
What are bad fats for cholesterol?
Here are 3 bad fats:
These originate from sources that are related to animals, such as dairy and meat. Saturated fats raise “bad” LDL cholesterol levels in your blood and increase your risk of heart disease. Familiar sources of saturated fat that you should avoid:
Red meat, processed meat, sausage, and bacon contain the most saturated fats.
2. Dairy products
Butter, cheese, whole milk, and ice cream are high in saturated fat. Reduced-fat versions may be lower in calories but not necessarily in saturated fats. Milk chocolate has about a third less saturated fat than dark chocolate but still contains some saturated fat.
These are created by adding hydrogen to vegetable oils during the manufacturing process. Trans fats raise your levels of low-density lipoprotein (LDL), also known as “bad” cholesterol, which increases your risk for heart disease. They also lower high-density lipoprotein (HDL), also known as “good” cholesterol.
Trans fat is found mainly in processed foods such as cookies, crackers, chips, and other snacks, pizza dough, pie crusts, pastries, fried foods such as French fries, margarine spreads, stick margarine, microwave popcorn bags, and many packaged bowls of cereal. You can find trans fat on food labels as “partially hydrogenated oils” or “shortening.”
Polyunsaturated fatty acids
Polyunsaturated fatty acids include omega-3s and omega-6s, which help lower “bad” LDL cholesterol levels in your blood. Omega-3s are found in fish oil supplements; cold-water fish such as salmon provide omega-3s naturally.
What are the consequences of having high cholesterol?
Blood contains a particular type of fat called cholesterol. A high blood cholesterol level is associated with increased cardiovascular disease and stroke risk.
The consequences of having high cholesterol are:
1. Increased risk of heart disease
One of the major risk factors for heart disease is high cholesterol. In the US, heart disease is the leading cause of death.
2. Increased risk of stroke
High cholesterol can also increase your risk of stroke. When brain blood flow is interrupted, stroke occurs. In America, stroke ranks sixth among all causes of mortality.
3. Increased risk of other health problems
High cholesterol can also increase your risk of other health problems, such as:
– Kidney disease
– High blood pressure
4. Lower life expectancy
People with high cholesterol have a lower life expectancy than people with normal cholesterol levels.
If you have high cholesterol, you can lower your risk of heart disease and stroke by:
– Eating a healthy diet
– Getting regular exercise
– Taking cholesterol-lowering medication
If you have high cholesterol, it is important to see your doctor for regular checkups. Your doctor can check your cholesterol levels and help you make lifestyle changes to lower your risk of heart disease and stroke.
Are there any foods I should avoid if I have high cholesterol?
If you have high cholesterol, you may be wondering if there are any foods you should avoid. The truth is, there are no specific foods that you need to avoid if you have high cholesterol. However, there are some general dietary guidelines that can help you lower your cholesterol levels.
First, you should focus on eating more fruits, vegetables, and whole grains. These foods are high in fiber, which can help lower cholesterol levels. Reduce your consumption of saturated and trans fats.
Meat, dairy, and eggs are all good sources of saturated fats. Trans fats are found in processed foods, such as kinds of margarine, cookies, and crackers.
In addition to making dietary changes, you should also try to get more exercise. Exercise can help to improve your cholesterol levels by increasing your HDL (good) cholesterol and lowering your LDL (bad) cholesterol.
If you have high cholesterol, you should talk to your doctor about the best way to lower your cholesterol levels.