This post was written in partnership with Kowa Pharmaceuticals America, Inc. and Take Cholesterol to Heart. All opinions and experiences written are my own.
The night I thought I was having a heart attack was one I will never forget. Have you ever had that feeling? OMG, all I thought about was how my daughter needed me and how I was “too young for this to be happening.” I lost my own mom to cancer when I was 14 years old so me being around for my daughter has always been very important to me. That’s why I’m all for making smarter choices for my daughter and me, and partnering with Take Cholesterol to Heart to share tips to stay heart-healthy and help to reduce your risk of high cholesterol.
It was a scary feeling to wake up to in the middle of the night. I went to the ER and after several tests I found out I was OK and that I shouldn’t worry and that I just needed to watch my diet and exercise regularly. That’s when I also learned that keeping my cholesterol levels within a healthy range was important (which thankfully I have done over the years) because high cholesterol can lead to heart disease, which is the leading cause of death in the United States. Cholesterol can be deceiving because you can’t see or feel it like other conditions, but it can have serious consequences. However, the fact that lifestyle changes can help to manage cholesterol really speaks volumes as to why it’s important that we take care of our bodies and our hearts.
While cholesterol is vital for many processes in the body, too much of it can build up in your arteries, which may lead to a heart attack or stroke. Cholesterol is made by your liver, but it can also come from the foods you eat, which is why maintaining a heart-healthy diet and exercising regularly are important factors in keeping cholesterol in check. One of the ways I enjoy doing this is by incorporating lots of fiber into my diet: foods like apples, legumes and often times oatmeal.
With the cooler months ahead, today I’m happy to share with you my recipe for Easy Chia Oatmeal. It’s quick to make and a tasty way to keep you and your family (and your heart!) healthy and happy.
I absolutely love this recipe for helping manage my cholesterol levels because it’s perfect for fitting more fiber into your diet – hello chia seeds! The almond milk I use is also rich in monounsaturated fat, which may also help to improve your cholesterol levels.
Honestly, chia oatmeal is a go-to breakfast because it’s SO savory and tasty that I don’t even crave those fried breakfast foods. Lastly, oatmeal is a great way to avoid saturated fats (which mainly come from animal-based foods) and trans fats (found in many processed foods). These types of fats can raise your low-density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDL-C, or the “bad” stuff) and more importantly trans fats are unhealthy because they lower your high-density lipoprotein cholesterol (HDL-C, or the “good” stuff).
Want to learn more about how you can incorporate a healthy, cholesterol-friendly lifestyle? Be sure to check out Take Cholesterol to Heart for more tips.