Tips for Healthy Snacking on a Low-Cholesterol Diet
Snack foods that help lower LDL levels include
Hi, I'm Laureen Wallravin, certified nutritional therapist and founder of RelishedFood.com. I'm here for About.com today and we're going to talk about snacking on a low-cholesterol diet.While cholesterol is a necessary part of healthy metabolic function, a high cholesterol score will often land you on a low-cholesterol diet. If you're at a loss when it comes to snacks, consider the following. Choose low-calorie snack foods that will help to lower your LDL levels. Raw and whole foods usually fall into this category, and are incredibly healthy, and can be quite filling in between meals. Uncooked, unsalted nuts and seeds are a great option, as are fruits and vegetables.Conversely, you want to avoid snack foods that are just plain unhealthy. This would include anything that contains high-fructose corn syrup, partially hydrogenated oils, and/or processed grains. Chips, crackers, cookies, and candy, among many other things, should be avoided, and be sure to read labels on seemingly healthy options, like snack bars.Be sure to eat your snacks at the right time, which is usually about two hours after your most recent meal. This will keep your metabolism up, and give you just the boost you need to make it to your next meal. Eating a modest and healthy snack between breakfast and lunch, and lunch and dinner, is also the best way to avoid overeating. Don't make the mistake of eating too large of a snack. You want to aim for the 200 calorie range with all of your snacks to avoid overeating and/or disrupting your meals. Knowing the calorie counts on some foods -- like fruits and vegetables -- can be tricky since not all foods require labeling. However, there are several websites that provide this data through a basic search.As you get used to healthy snacking, try to cut out any extras that may seem harmless. For instance, dipping your raw veggies in ranch dressing is delicious, but that dip contains LDL cholesterol, which you're trying to reduce. By cutting out the dressing and eating the veggies on their own, you've eliminated the bad fat and improved the health of your snack. A balanced diet is key to leading a healthy lifestyle. If your doctor has recommended a low-cholesterol diet, following his advice, or that of your nutritionist, is really your best bet.Thanks for watching. To learn more, visit us on the web at about.com.