Foods to Lower Triglycerides

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Foods to Lower Triglycerides (Image: fcafotodigital/E+/GettyImages)

Triglycerides are a type of fat that comes from the foods you eat. If you eat lots of foods that have saturated fats like butter, refined flour or sugar, you may be consuming too many triglycerides. Fortunately, there are many foods that can help lower your triglycerides, too.

Healthy Triglyceride Levels

Triglycerides can be found in certain foods, such as butter and other fats. However, this doesn’t make them bad. Triglycerides are stored in your cells from calories your body doesn’t need to immediately use. They can be turned into energy whenever they’re needed. According to the U.S. National Library of Medicine, a triglyceride level of 150 milligrams per deciliter or less is perfectly normal. You only need to worry if your triglyceride levels are higher than that. Triglyceride levels are considered borderline high between 150 and 199 mg/dL, high between 200 and 499 mg/dL, and very high when they surpass 500 mg/dL. More than the normal amount of triglycerides can increase your risk of diabetes, heart disease and pancreatitis.

Foods to Lower Triglycerides

If you’re worried about your triglyceride levels, there are certain foods that can help.

  • Omega-3 fatty acids: Omega-3 fatty acids can be found in many marine animals and plants. These healthy fatty acids have a wide range of health benefits and have long been known to help decrease triglycerides.

In addition, you should consider eating and drinking less of the following:

  • Alcohol, as alcohol can influence the amount of triglycerides that build up in your body.
  • Fat, especially saturated fat. Limit your consumption of fats and replace high-fat foods, like whole milk dairy products, with low-fat alternatives. Replace fats like butter with healthy fats, like extra virgin olive oil, when cooking.
  • Fructose, which can be found in many food products, including sweetened yogurt, canned fruits and numerous beverages.
  • Simple carbohydrates, like sugar, syrup and white flour. Choose complex carbohydrates like whole grain products instead.

Other Ways to Lower Triglycerides

In addition to eating a healthy diet to lower your triglycerides, there are other ways to lower triglycerides. Make sure you maintain a healthy weight and exercise regularly. Frequent physical activity can help your metabolism and improve the health of your organs, especially your heart. Don’t smoke, and make sure you always consume alcohol in moderation. As long as you limit your refined foods, saturated fats and sugar and try to maintain a healthy lifestyle, you should be well on your way to lowering your triglycerides.

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