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?