Employee Assistance Program → Topics and Tips → Cholesterol
Heart disease is the number one killer in the U.S. for both men and women. Knowing which fats raise LDL cholesterol and which ones don't is the first step in lowering your risk of heart disease. Saturated Fat is the main dietary cause of high blood pressure. It is usually solid at room temperature and found mostly in foods from animals and some plants.
Hydrogenated Fat raises blood cholesterol. During food processing, fats may undergo a chemical process called hydrogenation (common in margarine and shortening).
Polyunsaturated Fat is an unsaturated fat found primarily in oils from plants.
Monosaturated Fat is an unsaturated fat found primarily in oils from plants.
Both polyunsaturated and monosaturated fats may help lower your blood cholesterol level when you use them in place of saturated fats in your diet.
Trans-Fatty Acids (TFA) tend to raise total blood cholesterol levels. They are found in various animal products and are also formed during the process of hydrogenation. Some scientists believe they raise cholesterol levels more than saturated fats. According to one comprehensive study, they double the risk of heart disease in women.
Because there are no standard methods, it's difficult to estimate the TFA content of food items. Recently, the FDA passed a regulation requiring trans fat to be listed on the nutrition label. Food manufacturers have until 2006 to comply.
Research has shown that kids as young as eight already have high cholesterol and blood fats that clog arteries. Some unhealthy foods they consume include: pop tarts, cookies, fast food, microwave popcorn, donuts, crackers, cake, and canned biscuits.
For more practical information on cholesterol, please go to our web site @ http://www.adventisthealthcare.com/AHC/Atoz/dc/caz/card/chod/chod_gen_ovw.asp
American Heart Association, University of Maryland , American Dietetic Association and Washington and Shady Grove Adventist Hospitals . The Health Tip of the Week is for educational purposes only. For additional information, consult your physician. Please feel free to copy and distribute this health resource.
Shady Grove Adventist Hospital is located at 9901 Medical Center Drive in Rockville . For more information on health classes, screenings or support groups offered at the hospital go to www.ShadyGroveAdventistHospital.com., or call 1-800-542-5096. To find a local physician, call 1-800-642-0101, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.