Cholesterol Control Dietary Program

Cholesterol is a wax-like substance produced by the liver. It is found in certain foods, is needed to make vitamin D and some hormones, is used to build cell walls, and to create bile salts that help you digest fat. 

A large part of your body’s cholesterol is made in your liver, which produces about 1,000 milligrams of cholesterol a day. Enough cholesterol so that if you never touched another cholesterol-laden food again, you'd be okay. But it's hard to avoid cholesterol entirely because so many foods contain it. Too much cholesterol in the body can lead to serious problems like cardiovascular disease. 

Cholesterol can't travel alone through the bloodstream. It has to combine with certain proteins to be transported to different parts of the body. When this happens, the cholesterol and protein form a lipoprotein together. The two most important types of lipoproteins are high-density lipoproteins (or HDL) and low-density lipoproteins (or LDL). You've probably heard people call LDL cholesterol "bad cholesterol" and HDL cholesterol "good cholesterol" because of their very different effects on the body. Most cholesterol is LDL cholesterol, and this is the kind that's most likely to clog the blood vessels, keeping blood from flowing through the body the way it should. HDL cholesterol, on the other hand, removes cholesterol from the blood vessels and carries it back to the liver, where it can be processed and sent out of the body.

The average American diet is suggested to consist of 510 milligrams of dietary cholesterol a day. Our Low Cholesterol meal plan provides intakes of less than 120 mg. of cholesterol per day. In addition, the menus contain fiber-rich foods such as grains and vegetables that help in lowering LDL levels and triglycerides, while raising your HDL.