Hidden Cholesterol in "Healthy" Foods

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With more women growing concerned about their overall health, this often means taking steps to watch and limit their cholesterol intake, which when not lowered, can set them up for a variety of disease conditions.

Cholesterol is one part of the diet that can sneak in quite easily as it's not usually visible to the naked eye. While you can clearly see a thick chunk of fat on the side of your steak, in other foods it's not this obvious so learning the worst cholesterol offenders in the diet is time very well spent.

Here are the top cholesterol-rich foods that you need to work at avoiding.

Baked Goods

Typically the worst offenders on the baked goods food list will be cookies, sponge cakes, cream puffs, and other cream or custard filled donuts. These all contain around 100 mg of cholesterol each and often you'll eat more than just a single serving in a sitting.

Other baked goods can also be quite high in cholesterol depending on how they are made, so your best bet is to avoid these altogether. Not only are they going to be high in cholesterol, but they are also going to be quite high in calories as well, so that alone, even if they were lower in cholesterol, should be a good reason to avoid them.

Fish and Fish Products

While fish is typically thought to be one of the healthy protein sources, this is not always 100% true. If you choose the wrong type of fish, rather than getting a nice lean source of protein, you're getting protein that's filled with heart disease-promoting cholesterol.

Mollusk or squid are the worst offenders here, coming in at over 500 mg of cholesterol per serving. Shrimp also pack a cholesterol punch, as do crayfish, lobster, and crab.

Your best bet is to stick with white fish such as cod, salmon, tilapia, or perch. They will still contain some cholesterol, but it will be much less.

Poultry

Poultry is another meat that is thought to be leaner but again, if you are not watching the type you're taking in, you could be getting much more cholesterol than you bargained for.

The highest cholesterol containing poultry foods include chicken, goose, and duck liver, so stay away from those.

After that, the other ones to watch for are the giblets of poultry. If you typically consume breasts or thigh on the other hand, then you should be okay as long as you take the time to cut off any visible skin or fat.

Dairy Foods

Dairy foods are probably the most common that has been linked to high cholesterol levels and for good reason. Egg yolks will be your worst offenders, which you may have already suspected.

After eggs, then you also need to concern yourself with full fat milk or cheese, as they contain very high amounts of saturated fat which can also raise cholesterol levels.

Provided you do make the effort to consume skim or 1% milk and cheese, you should have no problem consuming dairy products on a cholesterol-lowering diet in effort to get in your needed protein and calcium. Processed Meats Another important group of foods to watch out for you in your quest to lower the cholesterol in your diet are processed meats.

Of particular importance is any type of pate, which tops the list for cholesterol. Also beware of sausage, ham, pastrami, cured beef, and other processed sandwich meats.

Always double check that you read the label before purchasing these, as you will help safeguard yourself from purchasing one that contains an overabundance of cholesterol.

So be sure you keep these points in mind. You do not necessarily have to avoid cholesterol if you are currently healthy, but you should always be watching to be sure you're maintaining the right cholesterol profile (good versus bad).

The more often you can consume polyunsaturated and unsaturated fats in your diet, the better chances you'll have tilting the scales in your favor, so be sure you start making a conscious effort to pay more attention to where the fat in your diet is coming from.

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