27th January 2017
Tips for Lowering Cholesterol
Cholesterol often increases as people get older and it needs to be regulated carefully. Our Care Heroes here at Terrablu are very aware about the importance of lowering cholesterol and in turn, reducing the risk of heart attacks and strokes. We work with all of our clients to support them in keeping active where possible and having a healthy, balanced diet which should help to keep high cholesterol at bay or reduce it in the first place.
Here are some simple tips we have put together for helping to reduce cholesterol:
#1 Try some superfoods
According to Heart UK (the cholesterol lowering charity), increasing consumption of these six superfoods can help to reduce cholesterol significantly. Our Care Heroes work with our clients to ensure many of these foods are incorporated into their diet - soya food, nuts, oats and barley, food fortified with plant sterols and stanols (including oils, nuts, seeds, whole grains), fruit and vegetables.
#2 Stay away from saturated fats
Avoiding foods high in saturated fat can be a really effective way of lowering cholesterol. Foods to avoid or use sparingly include butter, fatty red meat, full-fat dairy products, palm oil, and coconut oil. Omega-3 fatty acids (although they are a fat) found in fish like salmon, mackerel, trout and sardines have been shown to protect against heart disease, so intake of them should ideally be increased. We enjoy working with our clients to ensure they have the right sort of food available to them at home and always factor this in when meal-planning.
#3 Let’s get physical
We understand that getting a lot more physically active isn’t an option for everyone, but incorporating more movement into any daily routine, no matter how small, can be beneficial for so many reasons - including lowering cholesterol and encouraging the feeling of well-being which we get after exercise. Depending on the individual’s mobility, simple things like chair exercises or group exercise classes for seniors (which can be a great social outlet too) are good ways of being more active. We will work with you or your loved one to come up with a plan to ensure keeping active is a natural part of the daily routine.
#4 Change the method of cooking
The way something is cooked can have a big impact on whether it is classed as a cholesterol friendly food. Grilling, steaming, poaching, boiling and microwaving meals are all better ways to prepare food, rather than frying or roasting. The occasional roast dinner or fried breakfast can be ok but the majority of food consumed needs to be cooked in a cholesterol friendly way where possible.
#5 Focus on fibre
Consuming more fibre can be the ‘pièce de résistance’ when trying to lower cholesterol as it binds with cholesterol and helps pass it out of the body so less is absorbed. Foods high in fibre include wholemeal bread, wholegrain cereals, beans, nuts and seeds, fruit and fresh vegetables. According to the NHS, adults should aim for at least 30g of fibre a day. Many of these food are easy to add into a daily diet by replacing cereal with porridge oats, white bread for wholemeal bread and having a piece of fresh fruit in between or after meals. Our Care Heroes enjoy figuring out ways to ensure these foods become a regular part of our clients diet.
Many of these tips should be straight forward to implement and the Terrablu Care Heroes always go the extra mile to ensure our clients’ routines and diets are tailored to incorporate these tips. We firmly believe that home is where the heart is and providing a support network with bespoke plans to suit our clients’ needs is essential.