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Plant-foods take centre-stage this edition, as we look at how a diet rich in fruits, vegetables, legumes and nuts can help turn your cholesterol numbers around. With Autumn upon us and new produce coming into season, now is the perfect time to revamp your diet.
Take Charge of Your Cholesterol & Prevent Heart Disease
Are you tired of being nagged by your GP to lose weight and cut out fat and alcohol to help get your cholesterol under control? Do you have trouble tolerating medication or prefer to steer clear if possible? Then read on to learn a natural and effective way to keep your cholesterol down (and impress your doc!).
The benefits of eating more plant foods (including fruits, vegetables and nuts) has long been clear, but did you know that eating particular plant foods daily can powerfully target cholesterol? Research by Glycaemic Index founder Dr David Jenkins shows that eating a portfolio of certain cholesterol-lowering foods can reduce elevated cholesterol levels and may be as effective as the starting dose of a first-generation statin drug.
Studies in which people were supplied a portfolio diet have shown reductions in participants’ bad cholesterol (LDL) by as much as 30%! Under real living conditions, where people were given dietetic advice but prepared their own meals, the reduction was 13% after one year on the diet—still more than what is possible from a simple low saturated-fat diet. Significantly, those who complied well with the portfolio eating plan sustained cholesterol reductions of 20%, even after 12 months. The bottom line: stick to the recommended diet if you want it to work like medicine.
The portfolio diet at a glance
To get the benefits of the portfolio diet you’ll need to incorporate the following four foods each day at the specified levels:
Soy protein: 25 grams, which can come from a range of soy foods, such as tofu, soy milk, soy burgers and soybeans.
Plant sterols: 2-3 grams from a supplement or plant sterol-enriched dairy food, margarine or other fortified product.
Nuts: 30 grams from any unsalted raw nuts, such as almonds or walnuts, and nut pastes, like natural peanut butter without added fat, sugar or salt.
Soluble fibre: 5-10 grams, obtained by incorporating a range of foods rich in soluble fibre, such as legumes, traditional oats, barley, eggplant, okra and psyllium husks.
If you’re thinking, “wow, I could never eat like that!” or “how much soy do I have to eat?” then you are probably not alone. These are not foods that are traditionally consumed in the typical Aussie diet, but then again it’s that kind of eating pattern that led to high cholesterol levels in the first place. The choice is yours…
Never fear! The research shows that simply including these foods in your diet will benefit your cholesterol, even if you don’t hit the recommended targets. In fact, if you are 50% compliant with the portfolio foods you could see reductions of up to 9.9% and if you are 75% compliant you could see a lowering of 21%. Aim big for big results!
What if I’m already on medication?
If you are already taking a statin, such as Crestor or Lipitor, this diet is still effective. The studies by Dr Jenkins and his associates looked at the influence of these foods on participants already taking medication and found it helped the statins work more efficiently.
Another guiding light is our good old friend extra virgin olive oil (EVOO). When good quality EVOO is consumed in combination with the portfolio foods it reduces the risk of heart disease. High in polyphenols and antioxidants, its effect is not only a reduction in LDL-cholesterol but also in blood pressure and inflammatory markers.
So, if you want to start taking control of your cholesterol, you need to eat more plant foods and focus specifically on the four portfolio foods. Dietitians can devise a strategy to get you as close to the recommended doses as possible to optimise your cholesterol management and ward of heart disease.
And if you want a sneak peak into how to use some of these cholesterol-lowering foods, check out our Smart Foods to Drop Your Cholesterol & Blood Sugar Cookshop coming up this May. Book yourself a seat here
“We never repent of having eaten too little. ” - Thomas Jefferson
What’s Cooking? – Gene-Smart Foods to Fight Inflammation & Chronic Disease
Have you heard of inflammation? TIME magazine labelled it ‘The Silent Killer’.
This is because inflammation is an insidious process that affects multiple disease pathways in your body, bringing on early sickness and death.
The good news is that there are ways to dampen inflammation so you can stay well.
Phytonutrients from plant foods, such as legumes and wholegrains, can talk to your genes and boost your body’s anti-inflammatory defense systems. They act as the control switch to turn off and on multiple genes that regulate the process of inflammation.
Your genes don’t have to be your destiny!
Join us at this fascinating cookshop to learn more about delicious anti-inflammatory wholefoods and discover pro-inflammatory ingredients that might be lurking in your fridge or pantry. Hear about the safest cooking methods that avoid the formation of nasty inflammatory chemicals!
If you have a family history of heart attack, stroke, diabetes or cancer, what you are eating right now is even more important than you think!
This cookshop will open your eyes a little wider to how you can protect your whole family.
It’s also a must if you already have insulin resistance, arthritis, asthma, psoriasis, gout, inflammatory bowel disease, heart disease or obesity – conditions which are all fuelled by inflammation.
Learn how small changes in your kitchen can make a big difference to your health.
When: Tuesday, 4th April 2017, 6:30 pm – 8:30 pm
Where: Nutrition and Wellbeing Clinic, Castle Hill (Sydney)
Learn more about our cookshops
Enjoy a delicious, brand new tasting menu throughout the evening as well as recipes and handouts!
Call on (02) 9899 5208 to book your place. You won’t want to miss this one. Cookshops with Sue Radd fill fast!
Food Matters with Sue Radd – The Arthritis – Red Meat Connection
Could your love of red meat be putting you at risk of developing rheumatoid arthritis? Read this enlightening column to learn about the latest research and why it is so important for your diet.
How to – Peel Ginger
Ginger is tricky to peel. With those uneven edges and odd shapes and sizes, a knife or vegetable peeler just doesn't get the job done. Watch this short clip to learn the best way to peel ginger and extend its shelf life!
Food InFocus – Need Fibre and Omega-3? Try Chia
If your diet needs a fibre lift, it might be time to turn to chia and see what the fuss is all about. Chia seeds absorb an amazing 27 times their weight in water. But how does that make them good for you? Dietitian Sue Radd explains.
Product Review – Rokeby Farms Whole Protein Swedish-Style Quark Yoghurt
A delicious new yoghurt has hit the supermarket shelves…Rokeby Farms Quark yoghurt. You might also notice the brand’s breakfast smoothies! These “Swedish-style” yoghurts are promoted as “whole protein” and they do in fact contain higher amounts of protein than most other yoghurts.
Where do you get them?
Check out your local Woolworths store to try these for yourself.
How do you eat it?
As traditional yoghurt, it is a perfect snack for school or work. It makes a sweet and healthy dessert after dinner, or you can add it to cereal/muesli/smoothies for breakfast!
Per serve (individual 170g tub)*
546 kJ (131 cal)
*Nutritionals based on strawberry yoghurt
Why we like them?
- Good source of calcium
- High in protein
- All natural ingredients
- Australian owned and made
3.5 out of 5 stars – A great new high protein yoghurt, although it does have some added sugar in the form of juice concentrate. The taste was also a little sweet for us!