People with high cholesterol can’t blame it all on their diet. Heredity plays a role in your cholesterol level too. As a commercial a few years ago use to proclaim, if your aunt Lucinda had a 250, or cousin Harold died of a heart attack with a 268, you better make your way down to your MD’s office, stat, and have them suck some blood from your arm.
Can your diet play a role in your cholesterol level too? Undoubtedly! I wanted to share a few things I did that chopped my cholesterol from 220 down to 165. I didn’t have to load up on Pravachol, Zetia, Vytorin, or Crestor; either. Actually, I’ve never used any cholesterol reducing drugs, although I was worried that it might be in my near future when I got the 220 news.
Here’s the diet I used to lower my cholesterol:
1-1/2 cups oatmeal
1/3 cup flax seed meal – really high in fiber and omega-3 fatty acids
1 scoop whey protein isolate powder (I like vanilla flavor, but use whatever you like best)
½ teaspoon of cinnamon
I use the “old fashioned” style oats instead of the 1 minute stuff. I actually don’t know if that has any beneficial effect on your cholesterol levels, but I’ve found that I just plain like the taste better. My experience suggests that there is an actual difference in the way different brands of oatmeal taste too, so try a few different ones. I like Quaker or the bulk stuff I get at the local warehouse store. The Quaker is always the most expensive (usually about $4.29 for 2 lbs), and the bulk oats are the cheapest ($1.26 for 2 lbs as I write this). Go figure.
Now many people think this stuff tastes like paste, but trust me, that stuff you sucked down in first grade never tasted this good! Actually the protein powder is a key component of the taste and the consistency. Different protein powders blend differently, so try several until you find the ones that work best. Most protein powder has some sort of sweetener in it, in addition to the flavor, so you won’t have to add any. If you do add sweetener, try honey rather than sugar.
Cinnamon is a contributor to the mix as well, adding more than just flavor. Cinnamon actually has a measurable cholesterol lowering effect. It also helps with your blood sugar, but that’s beside the point, but it will knock down your triglycerides, which isn’t.
I switched from white rice to brown rice. I actually did this more as a way to reduce the glycemic index of my carbohydrate intake than to reduce my cholesterol, but brown rice has been shown to help reduce cholesterol. I actually tried to cut rice almost completely out of my diet, but hey, I like rice, hence the switch. Brown rice does have significant amounts of fiber, which is beneficial, but according to studies, it’s actually the oil in brown rice that does the cholesterol lowering trick.
That’s about all I did, except to cut out some red meat, which I didn’t eat all that much anyway. I always try to stay away from the really fatty, bad stuff, like pepperoni and sausage. Yeah, I love pizza, but try substituting chicken for the other kinds of meat. On the subject of pizza, if it has white sauce, it just isn’t real pizza. Sorry, but Alfredo sauce is for fett, not pizza. Pizza has to have red sauce, or in a pinch, maybe barbecue sauce. As an added bonus tomatoes are high in anti-oxidants.
Hopefully this diet plan, such as it is, will help you lower your cholesterol.
Until next time, lower your belly fat………………Oh, and have a Happy New Year. Stay safe and watch out for those that aren’t.