Healthy Cholesterol Levels And Role Of Dietary Fiber
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Cholesterol is not inherently bad or unhealthy. It is a useful substance that allows your body to build new and healthy cells. High cholesterol, however, can be a threat.1
Your liver is responsible for making all the cholesterol that your body needs. But it is also found in animal-based food sources such as dairy products, poultry, and meat. These and certain tropical oils such as coconut oil and palm oil found in highly processed and baked food items are also high in trans and saturated fats.2
Saturated fats tend to be solid at room temperature due to them having single bonds at the molecular level. Animal fats are usually saturated, while plant and fish origin fats are unsaturated. On the other hand, trans fats are formed through industrial processing by which vegetable oil is hydrogenated to improve the shelf life of food.3
Excessive consumption of trans and saturated fats causes the liver to produce more cholesterol than your body needs. As the level of cholesterol in the blood rises, it can also lead to the development of fatty deposits on the walls of your blood vessels. This hinders the flow of blood through the arteries causing cardiovascular disorders. In some cases, these deposits can suddenly burst, causing the blood to clot, and leading to a possible cardiac arrest.
Cholesterol and diabetes:
Diabetes and hypercholesterolemia (referred to as high cholesterol) are commonly reported to occur together. Diabetic patients are at a higher risk of developing high cholesterol levels, as increased insulin resistance also affects the body’s ability to synthesize and absorb cholesterol. This, in turn, increases the risk of cardiovascular disorders in the long run.4
At the same time, people who are not currently diabetic but exhibit higher cholesterol levels are more likely to develop type 2 diabetes in the future. When the body cannot synthesize the excess cholesterol in the blood, it gets stored in the adipose tissues (fat cells), leading to an unhealthy weight gain or obesity. Obesity is a known underlying cause of type 2 diabetes.
But both cholesterol and diabetes can be kept in check by bringing about drastic lifestyle changes, including but not limited to an increase in physical activity and following a low-fat, low-carb, and high-fibre diet.
How dietary fibres can help in lowering cholesterol?
Your diet plays a crucial role in the self-management of blood cholesterol and diabetes. Let’s understand how:
The digestive enzymes in your stomach cannot process a large portion of the dietary fibers. These fibers pass undigested from the small intestine to the large intestine, feeding the anaerobic gut microbiota.5
A healthy and balanced diet promotes the growth of beneficial gut microbiota. The gut microbiota regulates several metabolic processes in the body, including glucose and lipid metabolism. A healthy number of dietary fibers promotes the feeling of being fuller for longer. Still, it also feeds the gut bacteria for longer, which enables the optimal synthesis of cholesterol.
Dietary intake of soluble fibers traps the cholesterol from food in your intestines, preventing it from getting absorbed into the bloodstream rapidly. Additionally, it inhibits cholesterol synthesizing enzymes in the liver, thus reducing cholesterol formation.
Horlicks Diabetes Plus and cholesterol management:
Self-management of diabetes calls for a close check on several critical parameters apart from blood sugar levels, such as cholesterol levels and other lipids in the blood. A diet that is high in fiber may help manage these parameters efficiently.
Horlicks Diabetes Plus is a nutritional beverage which has been designed for Indian adults. It contains high fibre (22% of dual blend fibre). Research has shown that diet rich in fibre helps reduce glucose and lipids in blood*. Horlicks Diabetes Plus is high in protein and contains 16 vital nutrients. It contains Nutriose®^ & Fibersol-2, which are known to help reduce #cholesterol and support weight management.
How Does The Dual Fiber Blend Work?
Nutriose®^ forms a viscous gel in the stomach, delaying the passage of food to the intestine and helps you feel fuller for longer. Fibersol-2 on the other hand combines with the food and ensures that the glucose from the food is released at a slow rate, delaying its absorption in the blood.
Combined with a fiber blend in Horlicks Diabetes Plus, they promote a feeling of fullness and help in managing the level of cholesterol and sugar in the blood.
Physical Activity Matters:
Diet, however, is one aspect of cholesterol management. The second and equally important aspect is an increase in physical activity.
The shift to a predominantly sedentary lifestyle has given rise to metabolic disorders such as type 2 diabetes and high cholesterol in the first place. Therefore, a conscious effort towards incorporating moderate to high-intensity physical exercise daily is crucial. Experts and health care professionals recommend at least 150 minutes of moderately intense exercise such as brisk walking, jogging, running, cycling, swimming, etc., per week 7.
This means that you simply need to carve out a dedicated 25-30 minutes from your schedule every day for workouts. Choosing a physical activity that you like can help make your workouts enjoyable rather than feeling like a chore.
Living with cholesterol and diabetes can sometimes feel overwhelming. Leading a healthy and fulfilling life, however, is absolutely within reach of every individual.
Self-management of cholesterol and diabetes goes way beyond daily medications. Making mindful decisions regarding food and exercise can go a long way to prevent and delay future health complications caused by high cholesterol and diabetes. Moreover, supplementing your diet with a nutritional beverage like Horlicks Diabetes Plus can help you in your self-management journey.
Horlicks Diabetes Plus
Supports Dietary Management of Diabetic Individuals
Helps Manage Blood Sugar
DHA For Brain Helps Reduce Cholesterol
Supports Weight Management