High cholesterol: Nutritionist reveals top prevention tips
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Fish is one of the pillars of a healthy diet as it protects against several deleterious health conditions. Not all types of fish have the same nutritional value, however. To avoid increasing cholesterol, squid may best be served alone, as it contains notably high amounts of dietary cholesterol.
Squid is among the fish highest dietary cholesterol, with a four-ounce serving giving you 169 percent of your recommended daily value.
Medicinenet explains: “Squid contains the highest amount of cholesterol per unit weight among various seafood.”
The University of California recommends anyone who is not considered to be at risk for heart disease to eat less than 300 milligrams of cholesterol daily.
Just one four-ounce serving of squid, however, packs 507 milligrams.
Despite its high cholesterol content, squid served alone can be quite healthy due to its low amounts of saturated fat.
Saturated and trans fat are the ones cautioned against by health professionals for those with high cholesterol.
People looking to reduce their cholesterol levels may therefore benefit from avoiding squid with batter, which could significantly raise lipid levels.
Despite their high cholesterol levels, WebMD warns that the main health risks of squid and shellfish come from their mercury levels and allergies.
What’s more, squid contains other ingredients, including DHA which may promote heart health by improving the resting heart rate.
Other healthy nutrients in quick are vitamin B12, potassium, iron, phosphorus and copper, which together boost blood cells.
How to reduce cholesterol levels
The NHS says: “More than two in five people in England have high cholesterol which puts them at significant risk of developing heart disease.”
It continued: “Around 6.5 million adults in England are currently taking lipid-lowering drugs such as statins.”
Although medication offers promising reductions in cholesterol, some dietary additions may also be effective.
Doctor Noel Young, at the blood test company Thriva, explained: “Plant foods contain fibre, which helps improve blood cholesterol by preventing it from being absorbed in the gut.
“They also contain vitamins and minerals and other beneficial compounds – like nitrates in dark green vegetables, which help reduce blood pressure.”
According to the expert, drinking water before meals may also help decrease the concentration of salt in food, and prevent blood pressure from rising.
However, it’s important to drink water and not sugar drinks, cautioned the expert, as these are a big source of added sugar in modern society.
“They increase risk of heart disease by raising blood lipids and contribute to obesity and diabetes, both of which are risk factors for heart disease,” explained Doctor Young.
Regular physical activity can also help correct cholesterol levels by boosting ‘good’ (HDL) cholesterol in the body by up to 20 percent.
HDL cholesterol helps eliminate dangerous LDL cholesterol by picking ut up in the bloodstream and transporting it to the liver to be broken down and removed from the body.
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