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13th May 2022

4 Most Harmful Foods To Avoid If You Have High Cholesterol

Cholesterol is a fatty, waxy substance created naturally by the liver and is present in the human blood. Cholesterol is useful in making cell membranes or hormones or vitamin D in our body, however, it can become a problem if too much of it is present in your blood. 

Types Of Cholesterol 

The two leading types of cholesterol present in the human body are:  

  • Low-density lipoprotein (LDL) – sometimes dubbed “bad” cholesterol because high LDL levels can result in plaque (fatty deposits) build-up within arteries thus enhancing the risk of coronary heart disease. 
  • High-density lipoprotein (HDL) – is also referred to as ‘good’ cholesterol because it transports cholesterol from other body parts back to the liver. The liver afterwards removes the cholesterol from the body. 

What Causes High Cholesterol? 

The leading cause for high cholesterol in humans is a detrimental lifestyle. This includes: 

  • Adverse and unhealthy eating habits, like eating lots of bad and baneful saturated fats and trans fats. Consuming these saturated and trans fats can increase your bad cholesterol. 
  • Absence of physical activity, little or no exercise combined with continuous sitting can reduce your HDL or High-density lipoprotein (good) cholesterol. 
  • Smoking decreases HDL cholesterol and increases LDL cholesterol, especially in women. 

Avoid These 4 Food Types If You Have High Cholesterol 

 A well-balanced diet safeguards your body against many diseases on the contrary bad eating habits cause health-related issues in the human body. High cholesterol condition in the body is directly linked to the food we consume. According to WHO, Coronary artery disease in one-third of the human population on earth is the result of high cholesterol in the body.  

According to the researchers at Harvard Medical School, the 4 unhealthiest foods you’ll have to avoid if you have high cholesterol are: 

1. Red meat  


Red meat is always bad for your cholesterol levels. Red meat contains excessive saturated fats. According to the experts at Harvard Medical School, people with high cholesterol levels should avoid red meat. Lamb, pork, and beef are normally high in saturated fat content. Cut of meat portions like ribs, hamburger roasts, and pork chops, and are the highest in fat. There is no need to completely abstain from eating meat, just eat it only occasionally. Restrict yourself to the permitted 3-ounce portion size and adhere to leaner cuts like filet mignon, sirloin, or pork loin. It is more beneficial if you can replace meat with proteins lower in saturated fat and cholesterol, like turkey breast, fish, skinless chicken, and beans.  

2. Processed meats  


Experts at Harvard Medical School state people with high cholesterol should avoid eating processed meats altogether as it is extremely harmful to them. Processed meats use fatty portions of meat which are not at all good for heart health. Bacon, sausage, and hot dogs use the fattiest cuts of red meat, and hence they are high in cholesterol and saturated fat content. Sausage and bacon made with chicken or turkey are somewhat lower in cholesterol than the red meat versions, hence healthier, however, they’re not cholesterol-free. 

3. Fried foods  


Everybody loves crackling fried foods, however, experts warn people about staying away from fried foods as they shoot up the energy density and calorie count of foods. Foods dipped in the fryer, like mozzarella sticks, chicken wings, and onion rings are the worst when it comes to cholesterol. Use an air fryer and toss your food in a little bit of olive oil if you crave the crunch of the fried food.  

4. Baked goods 


Pastries, cakes, and cookies are enjoyed by one and all alike, however, they are prepared with large quantities of butter and sugar, turning them unhealthy and high in cholesterol. Don’t completely give up dessert, just make a few changes namely, while baking, use bananas or applesauce in place of butter. Or go for low-fat frozen yogurt topped with berries for a healthier dessert. 

Some food items, like nuts, oatmeal, and fatty fish, are beneficial in keeping your cholesterol levels in check. Also, be specifically mindful about the high saturated fat content foods because they increase cholesterol levels and also make you gain weight. Red meats, processed meats, baked, and fried foods are notorious for increasing the bad cholesterol levels, the sticky version that builds up and clogs the artery walls. Thus if you are having high cholesterol, increase your physical activity along with your diet, include plenty of antioxidants, seasonal veggies, and fruits in your diet, and never forget to go for regular health check-ups.  

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Frequently Asked Questions

List out the familiar warning signs of high cholesterol? 

The common high cholesterol warning signs are: 
chest pain 
breath shortness 
coldness or numbness in your extremities 

Which are some of the best drinks for high cholesterol? 

The best drinks for high cholesterol conditions are: 
Green tea 
Tomato juice 
Plant milk smoothies 
Berry smoothies 
Soy milk oat drinks 
Cocoa drinks