Diet and exercise are the first lines of defence against undesirable lipid levels. Changes in your diet, along with exercise, can reduce your cholesterol level by up to 15%.
The main dietary changes include:
1) Reduce saturated fat - No more than one third of the fat you consume should be saturated. Major sources of saturated fat included processed foods, butter, cheese, whole milk, cream, meat, poultry, chocolate, coconut and palm oils, lard and solid shortening. Foods high in trans-fats, such as 'hydrogenated' shortenings or margarine also increase blood cholesterol. Use olive or macadamia oils for cooking, these contain monounsaturated fats that protect against heart disease.
2) Consume at least five servings of fruit and vegetables daily - This will increase antioxidants and dietary fibre, which protect against the development of heart disease. Garlic is a very good vegetable to consume as it helps to lower cholesterol levels by improving liver function.
3) Enhance the benefits of diet with exercise - Although dietary change can improve cholesterol levels, if you also exercise and loose excess weight you will often see even greater improvements.
Modifying the diet and increasing exercise can significantly improve cholesterol without the risk of side effects associated with some cholesterol lowering drugs. If you would like a specific program developed for you, please contact our clinic.