High cholesterol: Nutritionist reveals top prevention tips
If you have high cholesterol it means you have too much of a fatty substance called cholesterol in the blood.
Over time this cholesterol can build-up, preventing blood flowing through the body as easily as it should.
Although this may not cause an issue to begin with it can lead to life-threatening medical emergencies such as heart attacks and strokes.
Therefore, it is important to keep your cholesterol levels low.
Diet plays a huge role in your cholesterol levels, with foods high in saturated fats among the worst things to eat.
One expert warned that the type of meat you eat can also affect levels.
Registered nutritionist and research and development specialist at Nutrivitality, Elizabeth Wall, spoke with Express.co.uk to explain further.
“Cholesterol is a fatty substance which can cause build-up in your arteries and restrict blood flow and is often absorbed from foods,” she said.
She advised swapping out red meat for three other types of meat for this reason.
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Ms Wall said: “Eating too much fat and red meat will increase your cholesterol and intake of saturated fats, so opting for low-fat alternatives for products such as cheese, milk and yoghurt and choosing lean white meats such as chicken, turkey and fish, will help reduce your chances of stroke, heart disease and type 2 diabetes.”
Charity Heart UK also recommends avoiding fatty and processed meats to prevent your cholesterol levels becoming too high.
These include meats such as:
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Ms Wall advised on other ways to lower cholesterol through diet.
Fruit and vegetables
“There’s a reason you’re told to eat five servings of fruit and vegetables a day,” she said.
“Both food groups are rich in fibre, which helps remove cholesterol from your body, and are low in fat and calories.
“They’re also a great way to get essential nutrients such as potassium, vitamin A and C.
“Incorporating magnesium-rich foods such as green leafy vegetables, wholegrains, beans and pulses, apricots, nuts and seeds and bananas into your diet will help improve heart health.”
Omega-3 fatty acids
She added: “There are two types of omega-3s which are in every cell of our body, these are EPAs and DHAs and they both contribute to the normal function of the heart.
“Foods high in omega-3 fatty acids help to keep your blood pressure and cholesterol in check, which will, in turn, also lower your risk of stroke.
“Omega-3s are found in oily fish such as salmon, tuna and mackerel, but you can also increase your intake of omega-3 with supplements.”
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