We all know that what and how much we eat can lead to weight gain. Yet the types of foods we choose can also put us at greater risk for serious health conditions, such as heart disease, diabetes or stroke. Too many corn dogs, burgers or fried festival foods this summer can lead to high cholesterol and high triglycerides.
When you hear about good and bad cholesterol, the terms actually refer to the cholesterol in your blood, not in the foods you eat. High-density lipoprotein (HDL) carries cholesterol away from your arteries to be excreted. This is known as the “good” cholesterol. Low-density lipoprotein (LDL) carries cholesterol to your arteries, where too much can build up unhealthy plaque. There are no food sources of LDL and HDL cholesterol, but certain foods can help increase good HDL cholesterol and decrease bad LDL cholesterol in your body.
Triglycerides are another type of fat in your body that stores excess energy from your diet. High levels of triglycerides are related to both heart disease and stroke.
While elevated cholesterol and triglycerides can be hereditary, eating foods that are high in saturated or trans fats also increases the amount of LDL cholesterol in your blood. Foods that can increase your bad LDL cholesterol are animal fats such as poultry skin, red meat fat, egg yolk and full-fat dairy. Trans fat is listed on food labels as partially hydrogenated oil. It is a manmade fat found in many processed foods, such as bakery items, margarine, shortenings and fast food.
At Healics, our coaches work with thousands of adults at our client organizations across the country giving them the resources and support to make smart dietary choices to reduce their health risks. We encourage a diet high in fiber, such as whole grains, fruits, vegetables, nuts and seeds, and beans and legumes. Our coaches educate on the value of choosing unsaturated fats, such as fish, avocados, almonds and olive oil. We arm our participants with the tools they need to eat healthy throughout the year and to survive the temptations of summer. While anyone can develop high blood cholesterol, everyone can take steps to lower it.
Want to give your employees the benefit of better health? Call us at 1-800-HEALICS today or contact us now.