Treating High Triglycerides: 6 Foods You Need To Cut Off
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No matter who you are and what you do, it is now quite common for doctors to recommend that you get a lipid profile test done regularly to screen for and prevent any risks of heart diseases. This is because India has one of the highest burdens of cardiovascular diseases worldwide, with over 4.77 million people impacted by 2020. A lipid profile, which shows your cholesterol and triglyceride levels, is one of the main indicators of the risk of heart diseases.  

But what most people don’t realise is that having high triglycerides while your cholesterol is under control can still spell a high risk for heart diseases. Triglycerides and cholesterol are both types of lipids or fats found in your blood, but they serve different roles in the body. Triglycerides are the most common type of fat found in a diet and it is also produced by the liver as the body’s way to store energy. So, when you eat more triglyceride-heavy foods, your body still produces more triglycerides as a normal function—and this leads to an excess of this type of fat in the body. 

How does that impact you health? Well, apart from causing weight gain, high triglycerides can cause a number of other health issues too. The National Institutes of Health suggest that high triglyceride levels in your blood can cause metabolic syndrome, diabetes, pancreatitis, liver disease and of course, heart disease. So, if you do have high triglycerides showing up in your lipid profile report, you should immediately cut down on or completely cut off the following foods from your diet. 

Video Credit: YouTube/Shilpa Shetty Kundra

1. Added Sugars And Sugary Foods 

Apart from the most common desserts, baked and Indian, added sugars are found in various forms, such as sucrose, high-fructose corn syrup, and glucose, which are commonly added to foods and beverages. Sugary foods and drinks like soft drinks, energy drinks, candies, and pastries can also lead to rapid spikes in blood sugar and triglyceride levels. This can not only increase your risk of insulin problems and diabetes, but also cause heart disease. 

2. Refined Carbohydrates 

Refined carbohydrates are processed grains that have had their fiber-rich bran and nutrient-rich germ removed. So, you might love maida in your flatbreads, puris and bakery goodies, but they are anything but good if you have high triglycerides. So, cut off white bread, white rice, maida treats like bhaturas and puris, sugary cereals, etc to avoid worsening of triglycerides.  

3. Trans Fats And Saturated Fats 

Trans fats are artificially created fats often found in partially hydrogenated oils, which are used in many processed and fried foods, including your favourite pakodas. Saturated fats, on the other hand, are typically solid at room temperature (like dalda and full cream or malai) and are commonly found in fatty cuts of meat, full-fat dairy products, and oils like coconut oil. A high intake of any of these can increase your triglyceride levels, not to mention your weight. 

4. Alcohol 

Indulging in a few cocktails or a glass of whiskey or wine might seem like a great way to unwind after a hard day’s work, but for those with high triglycerides, it can spell disaster. Alcohol consumption impacts the liver and the liver is the organ that produces triglycerides, So, excessive alcohol consumption can increase your triglyceride levels apart from causing digestive issues, inflammation, metabolic syndrome and weight gain. In short, alcohol is a no-no for heart health, no matter what wine experts may say. 

5. Fried And Fast Foods 

Once again, snacking on fried foods might be second nature to you if you are Indian, but with high triglycerides, a simple pakoda binge can cause your lipid levels to shoot up. This is because fried and fast foods are often high in unhealthy fats and calories. Added to that, the oils used for frying can become oxidized and contribute to inflammation and elevated triglycerides. Insulin resistance is also caused by consuming fried and fast foods, so best to avoid these or go for baked or air-fried options. 

6. Processed Meats 

Whipping up a salami or ham sandwich or frying up some sausages for a quick meal might be convenient for most people, especially working professionals, but these processed meats are simply not good for your triglyceride levels. Processed meats are typically high in saturated fats, sodium, and preservatives. So, not only can they cause triglyceride spikes, but also lead to fluid retention due to high sodium intake and high blood pressure. So, go for lean and fresh meats instead if you are non-vegetarian, or shift to plant-based proteins.