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Should cardiac patients stop consuming oily food items altogether?
(May 12, 2010)

For people with heart disease, diet is one of the most important factors of a healthy lifestyle. In fact, in today’s day and age, when combined with the lack of exercise, a bad diet is also one of the major causes of heart disease. If you’ve been diagnosed with any form of heart disease, chances are that your doctor will probably also ask you to watch what you eat.

Oil, in itself, does not have cholesterol, but it does encourage the production of cholesterol in the body. Keep in mind that cholesterol is necessary for the body, just as fat is, but it’s too much of it that causes the problem.

Oil contains fatty acids that help in producing cholesterol. You may have heard of good and bad fats. Well, ‘good fat’ is Mono Unsaturated Fatty Acid, or MUFA, which cuts down fatty acids in the blood stream. Poly Unsaturated Fatty Acids are not as good, but they also cut down on good cholesterol along with the bad. Saturated Fats are the worst, as they actually increase the bad cholesterol in the blood, leading to heart problems.

So as you can see, it’s important to cut down on oil, but you shouldn’t completely cut it out. The best way to do this is to stop eating out, as food cooked in most restaurants is steeped in oil. Even at home, stick to low-oil cooking and baking. What you really need to do is mix up the kinds of oils you use, and cut down on ‘bad oils’. For instance, olive oil is good for you because it has mono-unsaturated fats. The oil is known to have numerous health benefits, including fighting cancer. It’s one of the reasons why people in the Mediterranean are known to have the healthiest hearts in the world. Similarly, soybean oil contains poly unsaturated fats, specifically linoleic acids, and alpha-linoleic acids, both of which are necessary for good health. In small amounts, other oils like safflower or sunflower are also good for you, as long as you remember that the catch phrase is “In small amounts”.

What you should be avoiding, in fact, are butter, margarine and other fats. Meat and dairy products are one of the largest sources of cholesterol, and avoiding this helps you cut down on a lot of cholesterol. Also, keep in mind that many foods contain their own oil, so you don’t need to add more. Healthy cooking will go a long way in helping your heart to heal.
Submitted by C N on May 12, 2010 at 07:40


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