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Cholesterol Diet Chart

Submitted by Nick on March 4, 2011

Cholesterol Diet Chart

Cholesterol is a waxy chemical compound which is present in the cell membranes. It is also a building block for the hormones. Most of the cholesterol in the body is secreted by the liver and the rest of it comes from the food we consume. Dietary cholesterol is present in foods such as dairy products, fish, poultry and meat. Plant foods do not contain any cholesterol.

Once a meal is consumed, the cholesterol in foods is absorbed and stored in the liver. The liver controls the levels of cholesterol in the body and can secrete it when required. Cholesterol is classified into two types, HDL or “good” cholesterol and LDL or “bad” cholesterol.

HDL cholesterol is composed of high density lipoproteins which is healthy for the body and helps to reduce the bad cholesterol levels. LDL cholesterol consists of low density lipoproteins which tend to adhere to the interior walls of the veins and arteries. If this type of cholesterol is consumed in excess, it can cause heart disease.

A cholesterol diet chart is used to ensure that there is a balanced intake of both types of cholesterol. These charts are often circulated by doctors and also government agencies to spread awareness about the cholesterol content in common foods. Such charts help in formulating a cholesterol diet plan wherein one can regulate the intake of foods.

The cholesterol content in foods is expressed in milligrams per 100 grams of each food. A high cholesterol diet chart provides a list of foods which contain higher amounts of cholesterol. Cholesterol is mainly obtained from saturated fats and can have damaging effects on the body if consumed in excess. High cholesterol foods include cod fish, lard, salted butter, poached eggs, salami, chicken and sponge pudding. Low cholesterol foods chart provides a list of foods which contain less cholesterol. Such foods must form an important part of the diet and all doctors recommend that these foods be consumed on a daily basis.

Some of the foods mentioned in a low cholesterol diet chart include bread, scallops, oysters, Irish stew, scones and margarine.
The best way to combat the effects of bad cholesterol is to consume plenty of fresh fruits and vegetables in the form of juices, soups or salads. Garlic is beneficial for those with high LDL levels as it reduces the risk of blocked arteries. Even raw onions help to reduce LDL levels, while also increasing HDL levels. Other recommended foods include legumes, beans and lentils. Oatmeal is another food that is effective in reducing cholesterol levels. Consume a bowl of oatmeal for breakfast every day. You can also add some nuts as they are high in essential fatty acids which are healthy fats. Fats are necessary for proper functioning of the body. However most of the fat content should come from unsaturated fats. These can be obtained from oils such as canola oil and sunflower oil. Olive oil is one of the most valuable sources of healthy fats as it helps to elevate good cholesterol levels and prevents the formation of plaque in the arteries.
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