Friday, July 17, 2015

How I lowered my total cholesterol level (by 10% in 90 days) - part 2

Did you read the first part of this article? Are you curious to know what follows? Well, let's proceed!

Cutting down on unhealthy food is only a part of the systemic approach one should adopt to reach significant outcomes. Please keep in mind that lowering the cholesterol level is not a task to be achieved at any cost. Be aware of so-called experts trying to convince you that high cholesterol is a disease and the remedy is to swallow magic pills. As I explained in previous posts, my target is to keep my cholesterol values under control (and thus, the risk of heart diseases in the future) and to feel fit & light by quitting unhealthy habits and by taking on a healthy lifestyle, possibly avoiding the use of medical treatment. 
In the first part I talked about the food I quit and why, now I want to talk about the food I've been eating and the exercises I've been doing all over the last three months. As a result, my total cholesterol level decreased by more than 10%.

1. Fruit
Before starting my diet, I realized that the contribution of fruit in my daily food consumption was near to zero. It was my luck that I began my new eating style in May, as I love spring and summer fruit. There is nothing more pleasant than devouring a bowl of fresh fruit salad right after 1 hour of physical exercise! It's the best alternative to sugar products. Now I try to eat a portion of fruit at least twice a day, possibly between the meals or before lunch. 
 2. Vegetables
My sister lives in a country-house with a big piece of land, which includes an orchard and a vegetable garden, so we can enjoy fresh veggies and fruit for free! They are essential to keep your body healthy. Compared to the past, I tend to consume zucchini, eggplants, cucumbers, tomatoes, carrots and salads more often (at least a portion at lunch and dinner). Grilled eggplants are fantastic! (and don't lose any health property).
3. Fish
The best alternative to meat is fish (if you're not vegetarian). On one hand, it's much more expensive than pork and lamb, on the other hand you need just a fishing rod to get some (did I tell you that I live in an island?). I like to barbecue sea bass and sea bream. Grilled shrimps are great, too, but unfortunately they're not so healthy. I've been also eating salmon, codfish, tuna and, now and then, sardines. All in all, fish is on my plate 2/3 times a week. 

 4. Special Yoghurt Drinks
Ok, I'm not sure whether such product is really effective or it's just another publicity stunt. Anyhow, I've been drinking one small plastic bottle of lowering-cholesterol yoghurt every day after my running session. It's tasty and refreshing and it's definitely not a medicament. I'm still taking it with a grain of salt, but for sure it hasn't produced any negative effect so far.  

These are the changes I included in my diet. I kept eating pasta (with lighter sauces, though), bread, rice and soups (seldom, I hate them!). For dressing salad and veggies, I use, as I always did, olive oil (home-made with our olives!). My breakfast consists in a cup of hot skinned-milk with a few drops of coffee and 4 melba toasts with a slight layer of jam. Another factor I've been taking into consideration is the quantity of food: I stopped pigging out and now I am trying to eat "more but less" (5 light meals per day, avoiding eating a lot at lunch or dinner). 

So far we've been talking about food. In the third and last part, we're going to focus about physical exercise and its impact on cholesterol.

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