Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Heart healthy, low cholesterol diet

So we just started this blog but already things are going to change a bit around here. I think it will be for the better. In general we eat pretty healthy- we never have fast food, white bread, cookies or cakes. We eat vegetables like kale and broccoli on a regular basis. We eat oatmeal or oat cereal for breakfast. We go for walks everyday.
So it was really surprising to me when we found out last week that W has really high cholesterol and triglycerides. He says that it runs in his family. Well I never knew it was that bad. In general I eat healthier then W, I eat no sugar, gluten, very limited meat and no dairy. Man and then there were those two trips to Ireland last year and all of those full irish breakfasts he took in every morning, with sausage bacon and the works.
When I found out about W's cholesterol I felt bad and I flashed to all the things I would give him, like cheese, bread, chocolates, whole milk yogurt, too much meat and sometimes butter.I was looking more for things that he would enjoy more than what would be healthiest. I think in some ways it is good that we found this out now because it will motivate him to be even healthier and maybe cut out the dairy and most of the meat, which would make me happy. I think it would be easier if we were on the same page as to what we want to eat. Also he is such a good cook that maybe this will get him creating more veggie and dairy free gluten free meals which would be awesome. I think this will be fun. I am excited to make our lives even healthier and feel great.

I know there is always the medicine option for lowering cholesterol, but I'd rather not take that route unless nothing at all seems to help. In general I don't believe in taking medicine if you can avoid it. No matter what, it always has some kind of side affect or adds some other health problem. It's too easy to take medicine for any problem and ignore what your body is telling you. I believe more in getting in touch with your body and figuring what is unbalanced and fixing it by changing diet or habits.

Ok, so the above picture looks way too healthy, I know. But we still enjoyed it, especially because we also had that sweet, buttery tasting pumpkin to eat with it.
I didn't eat the tofu because soy gives me migraines. W loves tofu though, which may or may not be great for lowering his cholesterol. Either way its a healthy food. I put a little sesame oil (less then a teaspoon uncooked) of sesame oil on W's plate because it adds such great flavor.

That green vegetable is called Gai Lan. It's also known as Chinese broccoli. We got it from the Alhambra farmer's market, this Gai lan must be young since they are so skinny. They have all kinds of chinese vegetables at the Alhambra farmer's market. The market is kind of hidden (the parking lot across from Mervyn's) but it's worth searching out. There is also some amazing (but not healthy) grilled parmesan corn, sorry for the temptation! In the future I'll have to take another picture of the Gai lan before its cooked. You can read more about Gai lan here.

To prepare it I just cut off a little of the ends and washed it. I put about two teaspoons of canola oil (one of the best for heart healthy diets) in a pan on medium high heat. Then I added a few chopped garlic cloves. I put in the Gai lan and covered it. I checked it after a few minutes and when it was wilted I took it out. Really easy.
You can find another recipe here at Jaden's Kitchen. Just be sure to substitute wheat free tamari for the oyster sauce.

I also used the short grain japanese brown rice we got from Mitsuwa that I like much better than regular brown rice.

Here's to be as healthy as you want to be!


Sheltie Girl said...

Many of the processed gluten free foods can have the unwanted side effect of raising your triglycerides. This would be the white rice flour, potato flour and tapioca starch blend.

This happened to me when I first when gluten free. My doctor had me cut out all the processed gluten free things...within a few months my triglycerides had returned to normal.

Dr. Peter Green mentions that this can happen when going gluten free and other things, in his book "Celiac Disease: A Hidden Epidemic." If you haven't read it, you can probably find it at your local bookseller, or

I wish you guys the best in working on his cholesterol and triglycerides.

Sheltie Girl @ Gluten A Go Go

weslouie said...

That's interesting to know about the triglycerides and the GF flour blend, so thanks for posting.

The cholesterol levels and such mostly come via family history for me.

I wonder if that also applies to the all kinds of GF flours.

Those kinds of flours you mentioned have existed forever in Asian cuisine and stores. We usually buy all of them separate at those stores and not at places like Whole Foods.

J does occasionally buy the blended, GF kind for baking some things.

Thanks for the info and thanks for posting!


jill and wes said...

Hi Sheltie girl,
Thank you, that is very intersting about the flour blend and good to know.
W doesn't have any gluten free store bought foods ever but sometimes I make bread or waffles with that flour blend. Is it that specific blend?
Are other flours better?
I notice on you blog you do make baked things with different flours. Those are fine for your cholesterol?
Thank you for the book recommendation.I think I read it once and my mother has it. I'll have to read it again :)
Thank you again your advice is very helpful as is your blog-
You have great recipes on you blog. I love that you use agave nectar also instead of sugar!
after I finish my candida cleansing month I will have to try some!

Anonymous said...

I just found this blog, March 2011... I am wondering what the results were now that it's four years later.

I have a history of heart disease and diabetes in my family (commonly known as metabolic syndrome x). So I am trying to read everything I can.

Very interested in your feedback.



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