Sugar increases cholesterol

flourless peanut butter cookiesWhen I was diagnosed with diabetes, I had no idea that my blood sugar levels were high, and I was completely shocked that I had high cholesterol since, at that time, I was in my early 30’s and was a healthy weight and exercised on the weekends. My doctor wanted to put me on cholesterol lowering medication; that alone almost gave me a heart attack. I refused the cholesterol meds and told the doctor that I was going to lower it naturally by changing my diet. By the look on his face, he was skeptical.

I gave up candy, bread, bagels, cookies, brownies, white rice and pasta. I stopped ordering soda when I went out to eat. I also reduced my total carbohydrate intake, even from fruit, since I was way eating too much, per my doctor. I cut back on fatty animal proteins, took my insulin, and checked by blood sugar daily. At the next blood draw, my blood sugar levels AND my cholesterol levels were down, and they kept going down.

I had no idea, at that time, that high blood sugar causes high cholesterol. The reason this phenomena occurs, is that, when we eat unhealthy, highly processed carbohydrate foods, our HDL, the good cholesterol, goes down (1). HDL is what keeps our bad cholesterol down (1). It’s like a seesaw. If one is down, the other is up (1).

It’s really amazing how much damage unhealthy foods can do. Revamping my diet was really hard and, at times, I became depressed because I felt that I had so few choices to eat, but I’ve found ways to be really creative in the kitchen, and I’m fit and healthy, and that’s what makes it worthwhile.

  1. Source: Klogas, Elizabeth. “How sugar really affects your cholesterol.” WebMD. Jul. 10 2017. https://blogs.webmd.com/heart-disease/2017/07/how-sugar-really-affects-your-cholesterol.html

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