Friday, May 28, 2010

Oh, Cholesterol!

I went to the doctor recently to have my cholesterol checked. I hadn't been to the doctor in years for anything non-baby related so I thought I should have it checked out. Turns out that, while the levels are within acceptable limits, they are still a bit high (and low for the "good kind", HDL). I'd had slightly high numbers years ago, in my 20's, but the doctor attributed them to my failing to observe the fasting rules (I had a glass of milk within the 12 hour window) and let it go.

This time though, no excuse for nearly-failing the test. I've been trying to eat right for a while: substituting turkey for beef, adding more varied vegetables and having more salad and using olive oil instead of other oils or butter. What I didn't know, though, was that the unfiltered coffee I'd been drinking twice a day could have caused my numbers to be higher. Apparently, coffee has an oil in it that, if ingested in enough quantities, can raise a person's cholesterol. Okay, fine, less unfiltered coffee. (Notice, though, I didn't say none :))

I'm also learning a lot about what cholesterol even is and what sort of foods have a lot of it. Dairy products, including the cheese I love so much, has a ton of it. So does beef, lamb (which I adore despite feeling guilty about it), eggs and pretty much anything oily and fried. Some of these things I can cut back on or do without; some of them are more difficult to let go of.

My doctor also suggested I try adding red wine (I like white) and some juices to my diet. His biggest push was for exercise. I asked him if chasing three kids around the house counted, and he sort of chuckled. I also told him that there are no gyms here that have child care. He asked me if I had a stroller big enough for all of them to walk around the neighborhood. Obviously, he didn't have any kids, or clearly hadn't spent any time raising them if he did. I have a hard enough time getting the three of them in the car to go someplace. Forget about taking them while I exercise.

So now I have to work in exercise (which I try to do, but not very sucessfully) and eat right (which I've been doing, but apparently not well enough). On second thought, maybe it would just be easiest to start driking copious amounts of red wine...

No comments: