.There’s a lot of talk these days about the importance of having a healthy heart. Much of this emphasis is due to the alarming statistics about heart disease, the nation’s number one killer for both men and women.
One of the risk factors of heart disease is a high cholesterol level. In fact, more than half of all Americans have blood cholesterol levels high enough to be at risk for heart disease.
What is Cholesterol?
Cholesterol is made by the liver and is found in every cell in the body. Everyone needs cholesterol – it helps make hormones and build cell walls. Your body probably makes all the cholesterol it needs. Any excess cholesterol enters the blood when you eat foods that are high in cholesterol and saturated fat, such as meat and dairy products. When there is too much cholesterol in your bloodstream, it can become trapped in your arteries. This can cause heart attacks, chest pains, or over time, heart disease.
How high is too high?
A desirable cholesterol level is one that is below 200. If your cholesterol level is between 200 and 239, you are “borderline-high,” which means you are at increased risk of developing heart disease. If your number is 240 or above, you are at high risk of developing heart disease.
Watch what you eat!
The best way to decrease your cholesterol level is to reduce the amount of saturated fat in your diet. Choose foods such as beans, fish, poultry, lean meats, whole grain breads and cereals, fruits and vegetables. Avoid large amounts of red meat, butter and creams.
Visit your doctor
To find out your cholesterol level, visit your doctor. If you already know you have a high cholesterol level, remember to see your doctor on a regular basis to monitor your progress and keep you on track to attaining a healthy heart.
Healthy Living Article List
|For Women||For Seniors||Fighting Cancer||Your Heart||Emergency 101|
|Work Smart||Bones, Muscles and Joints||Nutrition News||Advice From Our Docs|