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Triglyceride-Friendly Meals

Fries or fruit? Ribeye or tuna steak? Soda or water?

Every time you decide what to eat, you either increase or decrease your chance of having a heart attack or stroke. Let that inspire you to choose triglyceride-friendly meals.

Recommended Related to Cholesterol Management

How High Cholesterol Leads to Atherosclerosis

Abnormal cholesterol levels are associated with clogged arteries as a result of a process called atherosclerosis. having a better cholesterol profile lowers the risk of diseases caused by atherosclerosis, like heart attacks and strokes. So what makes cholesterol so bad for your arteries? And isn't there a "good" cholesterol? How does treating high cholesterol help? 

Read the How High Cholesterol Leads to Atherosclerosis article > >

“Changing the diet can have dramatic effects on triglyceride levels,” says Robert Bonow, MD, former president of the American Heart Association and professor of Medicine at Northwestern University. In fact, a healthy diet -- plus exercise and weight loss if you’re overweight -- can cut your triglyceride levels by 20% to 50%.

The meals below can help lower your triglycerides. You may need to adjust portion sizes to meet your calorie level.

Breakfasts That Protect Your Heart

Start the day off with healthy decisions. Choose one of these delicious breakfasts.   

Cereal & Berry Bowl

1 cup 1% or skim milk

1/2 cup oatmeal with 1-2 Tbsp of chopped walnuts

Or 1 serving of cold cereal, with 5 or more grams of fiber and 8 or less grams of sugar

1 cup raspberries, strawberries, or blueberries on top

 

Egg Sandwich

1 whole egg, 2 egg whites, or 1/4 cup egg substitutes

1 cup or more of diced tomatoes, spinach leaves, minced onion, and mushrooms

1 tsp trans-fat-free margarine or a small amount of olive oil

2 slices whole wheat toast

1 orange in sections or 1/4 cantaloupe on the side         

 

Yogurt Parfait

1 cup low-fat or nonfat yogurt

1 cup high-fiber cereal

1 sliced banana, 1 cup mango, or 1 peach

A small handful of almonds on top

 

Salmon Bagel

1 whole-grain bagel

1 oz sliced smoked salmon

1 Tbsp low-fat or nonfat cream cheese

Capers or fresh dill

1 cup melon cubes with any type of berry on the side

 

Lunches to Reduce Your Risk of Heart Attack

Here are some flavorful lunches you can pack, and a few you may even be able to buy.

Soup & Salad

1 cup vegetable, black bean, or lentil soup (or any low-fat or vegetarian soup)

5 whole-wheat crackers

2 cups salad made with dark greens, like spinach, mixed greens, or radicchio

1 cup of any combo of colorful, chopped veggies: broccoli, carrots, red bell peppers, sugar snap peas, snow peas, tomatoes

1 cup fruits: apples, grapes, kumquats, pears

1 Tbsp salad dressing made with olive oil or canola oil (or nonfat dressings)

 

Sandwich With Double Crunch

2 slices whole-wheat bread or 1 hamburger bun

2 oz tuna

1 Tbsp low-fat mayonnaise

Minced onion

Dill pickle relish or sugar-free sweet pickle relish

Top with thin slices of apple or pear for crunch (1 medium piece of fruit)

Add this crunchy side: 

Finger Salad

1 cup veggies like baby carrots, grape tomatoes, and red pepper strips mixed with fruit such as apple, grapes, or pear (with peel)

 

Chinese Delight

1 cup veggie stir-fry with 2 oz shrimp, chicken, or tofu (request olive or vegetable oil)

1/2 cup whole-wheat pasta or rice (brown or wild)

1 cup pineapple chunks

 

A Friendlier “Burger”

2 oz grilled chicken breast on whole-grain sandwich (with 1 Tbsp low-fat or nonfat mayo)

1 cup side salad

1 piece of fresh fruit

WebMD Feature

Is This Normal? Get the Facts Fast!

Is Your Cholesterol Level Heart Healthy?
What is your LDL (low-density lipoprotein) level?

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or
Answer:
Desirable
0-199
Borderline
200-239
High
240+

Your level is currently

Congratulations! Your total cholesterol level is in the Desirable range, and your level of "bad" LDL cholesterol is optimal.

Congratulations! Your total cholesterol level is in the Desirable range, and your level of "bad" LDL cholesterol is near optimal.

Your total cholesterol level is in the Desirable range, but your level of "bad" LDL cholesterol is borderline high. If your LDL goes higher, your total cholesterol level could become Borderline High. Consider reducing the amount of foods you eat with saturated fats and increasing physical activity. If you get more exercise, your level of "good" HDL cholesterol may increase, which could also help to keep your levels of LDL and total cholesterol in check.

Your total cholesterol level is in the Desirable range, but your level of "bad" LDL cholesterol is High. This may mean that your level of high-density lipoprotein (HDL), or "good" cholesterol, is too low. It is best to have a high level of "good" HDL and a low level of "bad" LDL. The HDL helps keep your LDL level in check. Ask your doctor for your HDL level. If your HDL is low, increasing your physical activity can increase it, which may help reduce your LDL level.

Your total cholesterol level is in the Desirable range, but your level of "bad" LDL cholesterol is Very High. This may mean that your level of high-density lipoprotein (HDL), or "good" cholesterol, is too low. It is best to have a high level of "good" HDL and a low level of "bad" LDL because the HDL helps keep your LDL level in check. Ask your doctor for your HDL level. If your HDL is low, increasing your physical activity can increase it, which may help reduce your LDL level.

Your total cholesterol level is Borderline High, but fortunately your level of "bad" LDL cholesterol is optimal. This could mean you have a high level of high-density lipoprotein, or "good" HDL cholesterol, which protects against heart disease. Or you could have other non-measured increases in LDL-like particles that can increase heart disease. Your LDL level also could be optimal if you are taking a statin medication. Please check with your doctor to get your complete lipid profile and see if you may need additional treatment. In the meantime, find more information on WebMD's Cholesterol Health Center.

Your total cholesterol level is Borderline High, but fortunately your level of "bad" LDL cholesterol is near optimal. This could mean you have a high level of high-density lipoprotein, or "good" HDL cholesterol, which protects against heart disease. Or you could have other non-measured increases in LDL-like particles that can increase heart disease. Your LDL level also could be optimal if you are taking a statin medication. Please check with your doctor to get your complete lipid profile and see if you may need additional treatment. In the meantime, find more information on WebMD's Cholesterol Health Center.

Your total cholesterol level is Borderline High. Your level of "bad" LDL cholesterol is Borderline High, too. Working to bring down your total cholesterol decreases your LDL cholesterol level. You can do this by exercising more and eating less food with saturated fats. Check food labels!

Your total cholesterol level is Borderline High. Your level of "bad" LDL cholesterol is High. Working to bring down your total cholesterol decreases your LDL cholesterol level. You can do this by exercising more and eating less food with saturated fats. Check food labels!

Your total cholesterol level is Borderline High. But your level of "bad" LDL cholesterol is Very High. Working to bring down your total cholesterol decreases your LDL cholesterol level. You can do this by exercising more and eating less food with saturated fats. Check food labels!

Your total cholesterol is High, but your level of "bad" LDL cholesterol is optimal. This could mean you have a high level of high-density lipoprotein, or "good" HDL cholesterol, which protects against heart disease. Or you could have elevated secondary lipids, such as non-HDL particles that increase the risk of heart disease. Your LDL level also could be optimal if you are taking a statin medication. Please check with your doctor to get your complete lipid profile and see if you may need additional treatment. In the meantime, find more information on WebMD's Cholesterol Health Center.

Your total cholesterol is High, but your level of "bad" LDL cholesterol is near optimal. This could mean you have a high level of high-density lipoprotein, or "good" HDL cholesterol, which protects against heart disease. Or you could have elevated secondary lipids, such as non-HDL particles that increase the risk of heart disease. Your LDL level also could be optimal if you are taking a statin medication. Please check with your doctor to get your complete lipid profile and see if you may need additional treatment. In the meantime, find more information on WebMD's Cholesterol Health Center.

Your total cholesterol level is High. Your level of "bad" LDL cholesterol is Borderline High. Working to bring down your total cholesterol decreases your LDL cholesterol level. You can do this by exercising more and eating less food with saturated fats. Check food labels!

Your total cholesterol level is High. Your level of "bad" LDL cholesterol is High, too. Working to bring down your total cholesterol decreases your LDL cholesterol level. You can do this by exercising more and eating less food with saturated fats. Check food labels! If you are struggling to bring down your total cholesterol and LDL cholesterol levels, your doctor may prescribe medication, such as statins. Following medication, dietary, and exercise instructions should result in improvements.

Your total cholesterol level is High, and your level of "bad" LDL cholesterol is Very High. Working to bring down your total cholesterol decreases your LDL cholesterol level. You can do this by exercising more and eating less food with saturated fats. Check food labels! If you are struggling to bring down your total cholesterol and LDL cholesterol levels, your doctor may prescribe statins or other cholesterol-lowering medications.

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