Do you have a lipid disorder? With cholesterol and fatty acids and hypertension, the medical terminology can be confusing, to say the least. A “lipid disorder” is just a blanket term for high cholesterol and triglycerides, meaning that you have too many fatty substances in your body, which puts you at risk for heart disease, heart attacks, coronary artery disease and a stroke. This may all sound like bad news, but you can still live many healthy and happy years if you’re willing to make a few dietary sacrifices and take medication.
To get your triglycerides and cholesterol back down to a normal level, you will have to make some dietary changes. For people who have high cholesterol levels from eating too many fattening foods, cholesterol lowering can be accomplished by as much as 10-20% from dieting alone. Reducing calories to 1,200-1,500 for women and 1,500-1,800 for men will help you lose 2 pounds per week. When losing weight, you shouldn’t drink more than one serving of alcohol per day and you should be ingesting eight cups of water daily. Adding just 30 minutes of exercise per day, either all at once or in 3 intervals of 10 minutes, can work wonders for heart health.
When cooking, replace butter with olive oil, canola oil or peanut oil. In many baking recipes, you can use applesauce instead of butter, believe it or not! Dieticians recommend eating no more than 5 ounces of meat per day, substituting ½ cup of beans to get your protein and eating no more than 2 egg yolks per week. To reduce cholesterol and triglycerides and extend your life, you’ll be limiting carbs, sugars, fat and alcohol but your replacement diet doesn’t have to be torture. In fact, many companies are manufacturing sugar free sweets and low fat ice cream to help tame those cravings. Once you use discipline over an extended period of time, you’ll find that these foods have lost their luster and no longer have control over your life or your health.
To get tested for cholesterol and triglycerides, you will have to get blood drawn to analyze the level of cholesterol, lipids and triglycerides in your blood. To prepare, do not eat or drink anything other than water for 12 hours prior to your appointment. This is a relatively painless procedure. If you’re doctor-o-phobic, then there are even home cholesterol screening tests available for purchase.