Why Not Cut Out Cholesterol Completely?
Surprisingly, your body needs cholesterol to function properly. In fact you couldn't stay alive without cholesterol. Problems occur when your daily intake of food contains too much of it. Like other fats, cholesterol cannot travel through the body as is because it doesn't mix with water. Instead it travels through your circulatory system in packets called lipoproteins and too many can cause cholesterol to get left in your blood vessels. This often leads to a narrowing that may eventually block blood flow.
How the Body Manages Cholesterol
After you consume fatty acids, they pass through your stomach before being absorbed in the intestines and eventually sent to the liver for final processing. Your liver converts cholesterol into very-low density lipoproteins (VLDL) that along with triglycerides travel through your blood vessels. Once the VLDL's shed the triglycerides, they become LDL's that are picked up by high-density lipoproteins (HDL's). Anytime your body is short of HDL's, the cholesterol packets can become stuck in your blood vessels which can lead to a partial or total blockage.
How to Lower Overall Cholesterol Levels
Reducing the amount of animal fats that you eat can help to restore your health and wellness. As a good rule of thumb, try to limit your consumption of fatty acids from meats and dairy products to less than one third of your total caloric intake. By eating more fats from plant-based foods, you can increase your consumption of soluble fiber. Plants also contain stanols and sterols which help to prevent the absorption of cholesterol in the first place. In addition, you can lower your cholesterol levels by eating more complex carbohydrates, such as starches, grains, legumes and root vegetables.
To learn more about eating healthy and losing weight, contact the Metabolic Research Center for a FREE, no obligation consultation. A weight loss consultant will meet with you one-on-one to personalize a menu plan that meets your specific needs.
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