Cholesterol Pop Quiz! (Heart Health)
How much do you know about cholesterol? Test your knowledge about high blood cholesterol with the following questions. Decide whether each statement is true or false.
To lower your blood cholesterol level you must stop eating meat altogether.
False. Although some red meat is high in saturated fat and cholesterol, which can raise your blood cholesterol, you do not need to stop eating it or any other single food. Red meat is an important source of protein, iron, and other vitamins and minerals.
You should, however, cut back on the amount of saturated fat and cholesterol that you eat. One way to do this is by choosing lean cuts of meat with the fat trimmed off. Another way is to watch your portion sizes and eat no more than 6 ounces of meat a day. Six ounces is about the size of two decks of playing cards.
All vegetable oils help lower blood cholesterol levels.
False. Most vegetable oils â€” canola, corn, olive, safflower, soybean, and sunflower oils â€” contain mostly monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats, which help lower blood cholesterol when used in place of saturated fats. However, a few vegetable oils â€” coconut, palm, and palm kernel oils â€” contain more saturated fat than unsaturated fat. A special kind of fat, called “trans fat,” is formed when vegetable oil is hardened to become margarine or shortening, through a process called “hydrogenation.” The harder the margarine or shortening, the more likely it is to contain more trans fat. Choose margarine containing liquid vegetable oil as the first ingredient. Just be sure to limit the total amount of any fats or oils, since even those that are unsaturated are rich sources of calories.
If you got these questions incorrect, it’s time to get smart about cholesterol! Doing so could help you live a longer, happier life.