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Foods To Consider When Controlling Triglycerides
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Foods to Consider When Controlling Triglycerides

The American Heart Association recommends the following guidelines with respect to triglycerides levels:

• Less than 150 mg/dl - Normal range, low risk

• 150 mg/dl to 199 mg/dl - Borderline high

• 200 mg/dl to 499 mg/dl – High

• Greater than 500 mg/dl - Very high, high risk

Triglycerides are fatty molecules that are found in blood plasma. Their primary function is to store unused energy for later use. However, if the level of these fatty deposits rises over the recommended level as shown in the above chart afflictions such as diabetes, stroke, hypertension and obesity may develop. Hence high levels of triglycerides especially over 200 milligram per deciliter put individuals at risk for developing these diseases.

Controlling triglycerides levels involves changing lifestyle habits and adhering to a proper diet. In this regard individuals afflicted with this malady should minimize alcohol consumption, refrain from smoking, exercise regularly and limit animal fat, sugar and simple carbohydrates intake.

Some recommended groups of food to consider when planning a triglycerides friendly diet include:

Nuts: Almonds, peanuts, walnuts, pistachios are steep with nutrients and packed with good, healthy (monounsaturated) fat.

Grains: Whole grain bread, oats and brown rice are safe choices here.

Vegetables: Tomatoes, squash and all of the dark leafy green family (cabbage, spinach, Kale, etc.) are recommended choices

Fish: Salmon is always a top choice here, but general all fish are loaded with powerful nutrients and heart strengthening omega 3 fatty acids.

Dairy: Some caution is needed here. Not all dairy foods are recommended; in fact as you will see below it is recommended that you avoid some dairy products. Skim milk and low fat cheese are generally safe to consume in small quantities.

Poultry products: Egg white and the lean cut of the chicken (breast recommended) are excellent sources of protein.

Herbal Teas: Green tea, ginger tea and some of the Chinese teas are excellent.

Fruits and Berries: Consumption of fresh fruits and berries in moderation is highly recommended.

Herbs: Onion, garlic, celery and sweet peppers are among the herbs to be included in your diet.

Wine: Dry red wine could be used in recipes or consumed socially in limited amounts. Socially, two drinks a day should not be exceeded. It is included here because the resveratrol content does appear to have some antioxidant health benefit.

Conversely, it is recommended that consumption of the following groups of food be minimized if not eliminated from your diet altogether:

Processed foods: Includes all processed meats and canned goods

Refined grains: Bread and white rice

Salt and Sugar: Salt and sugar consumption must be limited if not eliminated altogether from your diet.

Red meat: Includes all red meat and pork

Poultry: Egg yolk and the fatty parts of the chicken including the skin

Dairy products: Whole milk, cheese, creams, yogurt and ice cream.

Sweets: Candies, chocolates, energy bars, cakes and other bakery items.

Sports and energy drinks:

All sodas: Regular and diet sodas

All alcohol

Fatty Foods: Especially foods prepared in heavy oil and fried food.

Cereals: Most cereals especially those marketed to children are packed with sugar and should be avoided.

Juices: Many of these are Trojan horses for sugar. Read the label before you ingest. Anything with sugar content over 15 grams should be avoided.

This list of good and bad foods should give you a fairly good idea of what to include and not to include in your daily diet plan. Bear in mind however that if you are prone to high triglycerides, eating habits that include the recommended food groups should become a part of your daily eating routine rather than a so called “diet” plan. In other words, a healthy pattern of eating should become a way of life for you and not a momentary diet fad. Controlling your triglycerides should be your goal for life.

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