Its national heart month and Valentine’s day so what can you do to help your heart? You may be taking a medication to lower your cholesterol or perhaps wishing to avoid the risk. By following some key advice it might be possible to manage your cholesterol reducing the need for medication. If you have high cholesterol, it is of concern, because over time plaque build up can lead to a blockage resulting in a heart attack or stroke.
Test results should be broken down as follows:
• HDL – “good” cholesterol. Aim to have a good level as HDL works to clean up your blood vessels.
• LDL – “bad” cholesterol. Should be low. High levels can cause arterial plaque build up.
• Triglycerides – You want this number to be low.
Research has shown the following dietary changes to be effective in improving cholesterol levels . . .
If your HDL cholesterol is too low you need to:
• Exercise regularly, Eat monounsaturated fats and Omega-3’s: olive oil, almonds, walnuts, fatty fish, avocado, and flaxseed, Maintain a healthy body weight, Incorporate colourful fruits and vegetables such as beets, plums, red cabbage, and red grapes, Quit smoking, Limit simple carbohydrates such as white flour, sugar, and fizzy drinks, choose wholegrain foods, fruits and vegetable, pulses.
If your LDL cholesterol is too high:
• Limit your intake of saturated fats, Avoid hydrogenated oils (trans fat), Get adequate fibre from whole grains, legumes, fruits, and vegetables, Incorporate food high in antioxidants: rich colourful diet, Incorporate more healthy fats listed above.
If your Triglycerides are too high:
• Limit simple carbohydrates as above, Eat oily fish, Limit alcohol.
Unsure what to eat? A Dietitian can create a personalised plan to assist you further.
Of course at 121 Dietitian it hasn’t skipped our notice that today also happens to be pancake day. In honour of the occasion we’d also like to share with you an alternative pancake recipe!
Apple & Cinnamon Batter Puddings.
55g plain wholemeal flour
25g light soft brown sugar
11/2tsp ground cinnamon
1 large egg
125ml semi skimmed milk
2 small apples
2 tsp sunflower oil
Prep time 15 mins Baking time 20 mins Serves 4
Information checked & correct on 16th May 2018.