In case you’re not familiar, triglycerides are a type of fat that is made by your body in order to provide immediate energy. However, the way you eat can introduce extra triglycerides into your system. If you’ve been diagnosed with high triglyceride levels, you might be in danger of developing a more serious health problem.
Determine Triglyceride Levels
If you are concerned that your diet might be contributing to higher than normal triglyceride levels in your blood, you can visit a doctor to have them tested. Your physician will draw a small amount of blood to test. You should be sure to avoid food, alcohol and drugs for 8 to 12 hours before the test. Normal levels are anything less than 150 mg/dL.
Understand the Risk
Although researchers have never demonstrated a direct association between high triglycerides and heart disease, having high triglycerides is usually an indication that you have lower than normal levels of HDL cholesterol (the good kind) and this means you are carrying around too much fat in your blood. Over time, this can lead to clogged arteries and other complications that endanger your heart.
Dissect Your Diet
Doctors agree that altering your diet is the most effective way to reduce your triglyceride levels. Try to avoid foods that have a high fat and sugar content, like candy, and definitely eliminate any saturated fat from your diet. Some experts recommend an extreme diet called “the rice and fruit” diet, which has been shown to drastically reduce triglyceride levels in those who can stick with it long enough. Doctors have also recommended consuming complex carbohydrates, like pasta, beans, rice and whole grains, to reduce triglycerides, however, you must be careful to consume these carbohydrates without adding a bunch of fat.