Today's email from my doctor, on top of my (perfectly normal) mammogram results, read:
"Your cholesterol is much improved compared to last year. Your chemistry panel, glucose, liver enzymes are normal."
While most people would celebrate with a "whoo hoo! and a plate of cookies, I'm not satisfied.
While my HDL is over 50 and my HDL to LDL ratio is perfect, my LDL is a bit too high and my triglycerides are hovering around 200 -- at least 50 points too high.
Y'know what causes high triglycerides? Carbs.
I like to think that I eat pretty darn healthfully but I do tend to veer toward the sweet side of the flavor spectrum. I eat far more fruit than vegetables and I love fruity yogurt and fro-yo.
So my latest eating project is to rethink my snacking. Over the past year or so I've been using more and more plain Greek yogurt adorned with a teaspoon or so of honey or maybe some dried fruit. I think I'll be sticking with the plain for the time being. I'll grab more salads and stuff more spinach into my smoothies instead of bananas.
I follow Dr. Melina Jampolis on Facebook and -- perfect timing -- she's running a Cholesterol Reduction Challenge this month. So I printed out her guidelines and in 60 days I'll get my blood rechecked to see how I turned things around. These are her guidelines:
- Aim for at least 25 grams of fiber per day.
- Eat at least 1 ounce of nuts or seeds daily.
- Eat at least 1 serving of the following daily: oats, barley, beans or psyllium.
- Eat at least 1 serving of fruit high in soluble fiber per day (apples, pears, berries)
- Go meatless at least once a week, more often if you can.
- Aim for at least 2 cups of colorful vegetables each day.
- Cut back on saturated fat (red meat, butter, cheese) and sugar as much as you can.
- Make the majority of your grains whole grains.
- Aim for at least 30 minutes of exercise every day. If you skip a day, do more the next day.
If you want to improve your numbers, you can still take part -- just go to her Cholesterol Reduction Challenge page. Oh, did I mention that there are cash prizes? You can win anywhere from $50 to $250.
This post isn't sponsored or anything -- I just happened upon Dr. Melina's challenge at the perfect time.