High cholesterol is the bogeyman that everyone loves to hate. Doctors would rather that we concentrated on lowering our high triglycerides. Even the renowned Dr. Oz says that cholesterol is a myth and we should focus on our triglycerides. Here are some easy ways to lower this key health index.
Triglycerides are made by our body constantly. Carbohydrates are the key building blocks for triglycerides, so the shortest path to lowering your triglycerides is to lower you carbohydrate intake. For best results, doctors suggest focusing on reducing simple sugars and high glycemic index foods.
Without question, reducing simple sugars can be tough. Let’s be honest, sugar tastes great! To be successful over the long term, reducing carb intake needs to still taste good. Otherwise, the diet will be out the window in no time and those sugary snacks will be back in the pantry.
One easy trick? Fresh fruit! That’s right, fresh fruit can satisfy your sweet tooth while substituting fructose for sucrose. By cutting out processed sweets, your triglycerides will plummet while your body benefits from the fiber and nutrients in those delicious apples and oranges! The same trick works when you normally would reach for the sugar bowl for “just a sprinkle” of sugar over your oat bran. Instead, maybe slice a banana or some strawberries over the cereal. Tastes great, keeps everything fresh, and your overall sugar consumption will drop once again. Just be careful when buying canned fruit. In many cases the fruit is packed in sugar water, wiping out the health benefits of eating fruit.
Cutting back on sugar is somewhat like cutting back on salt; using less will quickly show you that you've been using too much without thinking about it. By mindfully using less sugar when you cook the food still tastes great, but with far fewer carbs. Start by cutting back by a bit (think one quarter less) and over time you can cut the sugar in half and still enjoy your food. Just as happy. Just as yummy. Just less sugar.
For times when you can’t cook for yourself, be sure to understand the ingredients that are hidden inside that box or can. Read the ingredients! There’s a reason that ingredient lists are mandatory now: it can help you live longer! Choose products with less sugar and fewer triglycerides on the “Nutrition” list, and remember that less processing usually means more healthful.
Triglyceride levels are a key indicator of heart health. By making these small changes you can dramatically reduce vascular inflammation, reduce heart disease and live a longer, delicious life!