ZocdocAnswersWhat foods are high in cholesterol?

Question

What foods are high in cholesterol?

I'm a 29 year old male. I'm cutting out a lot of fatty meats already. What non-meat foods are high in cholesterol?

Answer

Cholesterol is one of the basic building blocks of cell membranes and is critical for constructing many hormones. Unfortunately, cholesterol has other roles that are more harmful. The reason that so many doctors care about it is because cholesterol is involved in plaques in arteries and the disease process that causes strokes and heart attacks. Commonly known as the “good” form of cholesterol, high-density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol works in a number of ways, but importantly it helps transport other cholesterol particles from tissues and blood back to the liver, including helping to remove “bad” or low-density liopoprotein (LDL) cholesterol from plaques in arteries. High concentrations of LDL cholesterol are associated with increased plaque formation in the arteries, and it is these plaques that can narrow arteries or rupture and cause heart attacks and strokes. You are right to cut out a lot of meat, especially red or processed meat, but there are plenty of non-meat foods that you should also be careful of. In general saturated fat and cholesterol travel together; Here is a list of foods you should attempt to limit: egg yolks, cheese, ice cream, store-bought baked goods, and foods high in trans fats (not the same as cholesterol, but very bad for your heart health). Though I feel like a broken record saying this you should increase your consumption of fruits, vegetables, whole grains, beans, and lean meats like fish and poultry. Your primary care physician or cardiologist can best discuss your diet to help you meet your goals. Good luck!

This answer is for general informational purposes only and is not a substitute for professional medical advice.

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