Should We Be Eating
Foods High In Cholesterol?
What Is A High Cholesterol Diet?
For many of us eating foods high in cholesterol is what we mean by a high cholesterol diet. It seems logical to assume that the best way to lower cholesterol is by avoiding those foods with a high cholesterol count. But the assumption is only partly true.
It is true that we do get cholesterol directly from the things we eat. But it is not the only way. If it were then strict vegetarians (vegans) would have zero cholesterol. And that would be impossible.
In fact some vegans have high cholesterol in spite of the fact that they consume no dietary cholesterol. On average, though, vegetarians – and especially vegans – have lower serum cholesterol than their meat eating counterparts.
So if eating foods high in cholesterol isn’t the main cause of elevated serum cholesterol then what is?
The body - liver - typically makes all the cholesterol we need. Though cholesterol is essential for health too much cholesterol in the blood increases our chances for developing coronary heart disease
So if the liver produces cholesterol what causes some people to have high serum cholesterol while others don’t?
There can be several factors including genetic influences. But for many of us the reason goes back to diet.
Cholesterol And What We Eat
In short we simply eat too many of the foods that tend to increase serum cholesterol. Eating foods high in cholesterol is one important factor.
But a more important influence is eating foods high in fats… particularly saturated fats and trans-fats.
Eating foods high in saturated fats and trans-fats causes LDL cholesterol to rise. Excess LDL (especially oxidized LDL) in the blood sticks to the lining of blood vessels in a process known as atherosclerosis
Heart Health Note:
Research indicates that LDL cholesterol oxidized by free radicals is the real problem in the development of atherosclerosis and therefore coronary heart disease. That implies that the amount of cholesterol in the blood isn’t as important as the amount of LDL that has been oxidized. That is why many people supplement with antioxidants like vitamin-E for heart health.
Some studies have shown that vitamin-E can become depleted while fighting against free radicals and may actually promote atherosclerosis under these conditions. CoQ10 is a stronger antioxidant that has never been shown to promote atherosclerosis. Further it revitalizes vitamin-E so it can once again fight against oxidation.
To read more about LDL oxidation and CoQ10 please click here.
For a high potency CoQ10 supplement at a good price please click here.
Unlike saturated fats, trans-fats also cause HDL cholesterol levels to drop. Since HDL removes excess LDL from the blood the risk of developing atherosclerosis increases.
There are other pages in this site dedicated to a discussion of diet, saturated fats, trans-fats, and coronary heart disease. There is no need in repeating that information here. For further discussion please use the links below:
Low cholesterol diet
Particular foods that lower LDL cholesterol
Raising HDL cholesterol
Foods High In Cholesterol
If you are trying to reduce your serum cholesterol through diet start by cutting down on those foods which are high in saturated fats and trans-fats. At the same time increase your intake of foods high in Omega-3 fatty acids
. Omega-3 rich foods can actually help balance your cholesterol/triglycerides profile. If you are not already aware of this please take the time to follow the Omega-3 link above.
After limiting saturated and trans-fats and increasing Omega-3 fatty acids there is still more that you can do. Though dietary cholesterol is less influential than the types of fats we eat it is still important. Eating foods high in cholesterol can cause serum cholesterol to rise especially if other dietary considerations are not followed.
The American Heart Association recommends that we limit our daily intake of dietary cholesterol
to less than 300 mg. People with coronary heart disease should limit their dietary cholesterol intake to under 200 mg. To give you a sense of how much food that is, one large hardboiled egg can contain over 200 mg of cholesterol.
There is a rather detailed document put out by the FDA
that lists foods according to their cholesterol content. Take a few minutes to look at it. It may be eye-opening for you. (You may be surprised at how much cholesterol there is in chicken.)
There are all natural supplements that can help you balance your colesterol. Click here for a high quality, all natural cholesterol supplement at a very good price
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