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Zinc, needed in the production of insulin, is found in red meat, shellfish, and eggs. Now you know what these nutrients are, what they do, and where you find them. No discussion of proper nutrition can leave out a discussion of fats, so keep reading.

Choosing your fats properly You want to limit your fat intake to no more than 30 percent of your total daily calories while limiting your intake of saturated fat to no more than one third of that amount. Eating your calories according to the Food Guide Pyramid keeps you within those limitations if you choose your fats wisely. Select foods that contain unsaturated fat, like vegetable oils (not coconut or palm oils). You can keep your fats down by looking for low-fat foods, which are plentiful in the supermarkets these days. Just remember not to substitute foods rich in carbohydrates. Food labels can tell you what you need to know about the energy sources in the food as well as the amounts of the vitamins and minerals.

Measuring your cholesterol The fat that most people think about is cholesterol. You should know your level of cholesterol. Ask your doctor to check your cholesterol level if you don’t know it yet. The recommendation is that your total cholesterol should be less than 200. However, a particle in your blood called high density lipoprotein (HDL) carries cholesterol away from the arteries back to the liver, where it’s broken down. That’s why HDL is commonly referred to as “good” cholesterol. You can do a simple calculation to see if your level of cholesterol is dangerous. If you divide the total cholesterol by the HDL cholesterol and the result is less than 4.5, you’re at lower risk to have a heart attack. The higher that number, the greater your risk. You can do something to raise your HDL. The best way is exercise. The more you do (within reason), the higher your HDL and the lower your risk of a heart attack.

High cholesterol and hypothyroidism High cholesterol is also a well-known effect of hypothyroidism. Moreover, high cholesterol isn’t only associated with coronary artery disease and heart attacks, but with peripheral vascular disease (leading to blocked blood flow to the arms and legs) and cerebral artery disease, which can lead to strokes.

Thyroid for dummies  
Thyroid for dummies  
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