As I recently mentioned, I’ve got high cholesterol. It’s always been sort of high, but the last numbers were more of a wake-up call for me.
For those of us who aren’t cardiologists, cholesterol is found in all cells of the body, which isn’t so bad since we need at least a wee bit in there. Too much of it, on the other hand, increases a person’s risk of getting heart disease by building up (as plaque) along artery walls, narrowing the flow of blood.
Image from WebMD
Below 200 mg/dL is generally good. 200-240 mg/dL is moderate. Above 240 mg/dL is quite high. I’m at 233. Yipes!
HDL (good) cholesterol can actually lower your risk. A number greater than 60 is considered good, so luckily I’m at 65. Woohoo! The LDL (bad) cholesterol is the stuff that causes the plaque. Between 100 and 159 is moderately high, and I’m 142. That’s clearly not good, but it could be worse.
Reducing bad cholesterol sounds easy, but sometimes the easy stuff doesn’t work for all of us, like myself. Doctors recommend you increase fiber, stop smoking, reduce cholesterol in your diet, and eat less saturated fat. My doctor told me to exercise more. Hmmm…. pretty sure I’ve got that part covered mmmmkaythanks.
So what’s a girl to do when she’s already eating relatively well and exercising? I could go on medication, but I’m not ready for that yet (mentally).
I don’t feel old enough for this just yet!
I think I’m going to take some of my dad’s advice (after all, excess cholesterol production runs in my family), and increase my consumption of healthy fats. I’ll also reduce sodium, continue to eat my oats, and cook more vegan meals. (Cheese is a serious weakness for me!)
Check back tomorrow for a WIAW filled with examples of foods that combat high cholesterol.
- What’s the thing you wish you hadn’t inherited? Mine’s pretty obvious.
- What’s one thing you’re glad you got from Mom or Pops? Great gams run in my fam!