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January 30, 1987 - Image 82

Resource type:
The Detroit Jewish News, 1987-01-30

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Tips For Eating Your Way
Toward A Healthy Heart


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gittA ii-4-474-444/e


Friday, January 30, 1987


Diseases of the cardiovascu-
lar system are this nation's
leading cause of death today.
Primary risk factors include
high blood cholesterol, high
blood pressure (hypertension)
and smoking, while stress,
obesity and a sedentary lifes-
tyle are indirect risk factors.
Although males and individu-
als over 40 are at a greater risk
for cardiovascular disease,
females as well as young
people are not immune. The
best medicine is that of preven-
tion as an approach to living
both a physically and mentally
healthy life. This is especially
important for those with a fam-
ily history of cardiovascular
disease. There isn't anything
we can do about our age, gen-
der or genetic make-up, but we
can alter the other risk factors
by following a healthy diet,
kicking the smoking habit and
exercising on a regular basis.
Although the second and third
points cannot be ignored, the
following information covers
cholesterol and fat in relation
to one's health.
A large percentage of the
population knows the general
range of their blood pressure
while only a small percentage
are aware of their blood choles-
terol level. An ideal blood
cholesterol level is that be-
tween 140 and 160. However,
age and family history must be
taken into consideration when
determining individual
The dietary approach to low-
ering blood cholesterol is to
lower saturated fat and choles-
terol intake. If overweight,
weight loss may also help to
reduce blood cholesterol level.
Many people use the terms
cholesterol and fat inter-
changeably when they actu-
ally are two separate compo-
nents. Saturated fat is more of
a culprit in raising blood
cholesterol than is dietary
cholesterol itself.
When purchasing food, pay
close attention to the label on
the side panel. Product ingre-
dients are listed in order of
concentration — from largest
amount down to smallest
amount. If a saturated/
hydrogenated or partially-
hydrogenated fat is listed as
the major ingredient, that item
should be avoided. In addition,
fat, protein and carbohydrate
contents are broken down into
grams per serving and calorie
content is also listed. Choose
products with less than two
grams of fat per serving in
order to stay in the 30 percent
fat-per-day range. As a rule,
fats should be used sparingly.

Beverly Peiss is the registered
dietitian for Sinai Hospital of
Detroit's cardiovascular
fitness and rehabilitation

Increasing fiber consump-
tion from whole grain breads
and cereals, fruits, vegetables,
beans, peas and oats provides
less fat and helps to lower blood
Food preparation is not al-
ways convenient, especially for
those who work long hours as
well as singles who live alone
and cook for themselves. Pack-
aged TV and "light" dinners
tend to be expensive and are
quite high in saturated fat.
You can take a standard piece
of fish or white meat chicken
and create a dish for one in no
time by marinating in oil-free
salad dressing, using lemon
juice and paprika, using
orange slices and parsley
flakes, covering with stewed
tomatoes or tomato slices, or in
general using spices, vegeta-
bles and fruits.
Use lean cuts of beef and
trim all visible fat. Limit to two
servings per week. Remove
skin of poultry before cooking.
White meat of turkey may be
substituted for chicken. In
general, your favorite recipe
may be modified by making the
proper substitutions such as
two egg whites for one egg,
skim milk for whole milk,
plain, low-fat yogurt for sour
cream or mayonnaise and liq-
uid margarine for butter or
shortening. The sugar called
for in a recipe may be cut in
half or replaced with raisins,
oats or chopped apples.
Finally, many working sing-
les today are finding that din-
ing out has not only been
limited to special occasions but
has become a necessity. Long
hours at work make it easy for
one to rely on "fast food." When
eating out, choose a restaurant
with a varied menu, even if it is
a convenience chain restau-
rant. In general, you can eat a
healthy meal in a restaurant
by following these tips:
Ask questions. Don't be shy
about asking what's in a food,
how it's cooked and what kind
of sauce or seasoning is used.
Be sure meat, fish or poultry
is broiled. Request that no fat
be added. If the sauce is high in
fat, ask that it be eliminated.
Avoid cream and cheese
sauces as well as fried foods.
Avoid casseroles because
they're often mixed with butter
and cream.
Ask for vinegar or a slice of
lemon instead of salad dres-
Request steamed vegetables,
baked or mashed potatoes
without gravy and sauces.
Ask for cholesterol-free egg
substitutes. Make sure they
are prepared without butter.
When eating breakfast, keep
in mind that bagels and
English muffins are low in fat.
Order them dry and use a touch
of jam rather than cream

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