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Small Changes for a Big Payoff

Posted by on Oct. 30, 2013 at 12:00 AM
  • 32 Replies

I had some blood work done recently, and found out my cholesterol was high. It's not awful, and I can probably avoid taking medicine for it for now, but that means I have to actually do the things I already know I should be doing.

Luckily, a lot of the changes I need to make are things I enjoy doing already and the things I need to cut are not going to be too horrible (except cutting back on cheese...sob). For example:

Avoid saturated fat and trans fats: Saturated fats are in things like full-fat dairy, butter, and cheese, and animal fats. Trans fats are in  commercial baked goods like crackers and cookies. Did you know that foods with up to half a gram of trans fat per serving can be labeled as having zero trans fats? That means that you could be consuming a lot more than you think you are, if you eat more than the recommended serving size or eat a few different processed snacks.

Make breakfast oatmeal: Oats and oat bran have been shown to lower cholesterol in many studies...and they make for a delicious, easy-to-customize breakfast. I use quick-cooking oats, which are ready in about five minutes. My toaster doesn't make toast that fast! Throw in a little sweetener (I like brown sugar or raw sugar for a bigger flavor punch), spices like cinnamon and nutmeg (some people even make their oatmeal savory with pepper and soy sauce and the like) a sprinkling of nuts and some fruit (which allows you to cut back on the sugar). SO satisfying and delicious!

Take a walk: Exercise is good for mood, stress relief, sleep...and cholesterol. Between grad school, work, field placement for grad school and being a homeowner, parent and wife, I really struggle to find exercise time, but I've committed to doing a better job of that going forward. When spending 30 minutes a day doing something I actually enjoy can have such a big payoff, it's totally worth it.

Have you had to make some changes for your health?

by on Oct. 30, 2013 at 12:00 AM
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Replies (1-10):
by on Oct. 30, 2013 at 3:33 AM
Just walking more when I can
by Bronze Member on Oct. 30, 2013 at 7:37 AM

I've had to cut back on salt.

by on Oct. 30, 2013 at 7:42 AM
2 moms liked this

Yes, I have had to make changes for my health.  I used to eat what conventional thinking tells us is healthy:  first, I cut out all red meats and saturated fats....then tried vegetarian.  I ate oatmeal EVERY SINGLE MORNING.  My diabetes still went out of control and my cholesterol was still over 300 and rising even with medication (triglycerides were OFF THE CHARTS.)  I started to have heart problems and kidney disease reared its ugly head.  I had high blood pressure.

I finally decided to stop listening to conventional medical thinking a.k.a. my doctor and nutritionist and I educated myself. I read and read and read on the latest studies and research.

Know what?  Cholesterol is a vital part of our health, not an enemy.  It helps in healing and in nervous system health.  Know what causes high cholesterol issues?  It's not saturated fat found in real foods i.e. animal's GRAINS and SUGAR.  Those two things each cause the inflammation in our blood vessels that cholesterol is trying to heal.  Besides, our bodies make 75% to 80% to even 90% of all the cholesterol we need.  Any excess goes right on through. 

I cut out any grains/grain products....that's right, no more oatmeal, no more high fiber cereal, no more whole grain pasta or bread.  I cut out refined sugar.  No more processed foods.  I added red meat back to my diet, ate more saturated fat, including whole eggs, animal fat, REAL butter, olive oil and 100% saturated coconut oil instead of yellow seed oils (veggie oil, corn oil, safflower oil, sunflower oil, canola oil, etc.)  I doubled, almost tripled my intake of non-starchy veggies.

.....and what happened?  Within one month my cholesterol was in the normal range, and that was without the use of medication.  My HDL went up to 48, my LDL dropped to 71.  My total cholesterol/HDL ratio is over 4, where it should be.  It took a little longer to get my triglycerides down, but they are finally GOOD!  My heart issues are gone, and there's no sign of kidney disease.  My blood pressure is normal again. 

Just Eat Real Food.  It had a huge payoff for me.

by Sarah on Oct. 30, 2013 at 8:04 AM
I had blood work done not that long ago. My cholesterol was a little high but not something I needed or would need medication for. So I really watch what I eat because I don't want it to be something I have to take medication for later.
Elimanting processed foods from our home a few years ago too
I do cardio 6 days a week for 30-50 minutes and weights 5 days a week
by on Oct. 30, 2013 at 8:57 AM

No, I haven't HAD to, but I chose to make some changes to be healthier.

by on Oct. 30, 2013 at 9:19 AM

Yes less sugar

by on Oct. 30, 2013 at 9:36 AM
Eating lesser portions and better options. Exercising more as well.
by Silver Member on Oct. 30, 2013 at 9:42 AM
A few years ago I get a whole lifestyle change. I began exercising and eating healthy.
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by Laina on Oct. 30, 2013 at 9:47 AM
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cut back on sugar , eat red meat and vegetables 

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