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If You Have High Cholesterol Levels, These Are The Foods You Should Eat And Avoid

The Kashmir Monitor





A kind of fat (lipid) in the body, cholesterol is a substance that is present in all cells of the body. Build-up of cholesterol beyond normal levels can pose serious risks to your health, including heart attacks and strokes. While there are different types of cholesterol, LDL is the one which is harmful and can raise risks of heart diseases. You can control cholesterol levels by keeping a check on the foods you eat. Fried foods, oily foods and foods which have high contents of fat should be avoided by people who have high cholesterol.

Celebrity nutritionist Nmami Agarwal says, “People with high cholesterol should restrict their oil consumption to 11 to 15% of their total calorie consumption. Fried foods, oily foods, butter and mutton should also be avoided.”

When it comes to foods like mutton, they are safe as far as you’re having them in moderation. “Mutton has high fat content. But eating mutton in moderation, say once in 15 days – is not going to cause any problems. There are people who eat mutton on a regular basis and this is going to be harmful for people with high levels of cholesterol,” explains Nmami.


High fat dairy products, packaged items like chips, popcorns, etc should also be avoided.

Suggesting alternatives to oil in food, Nmami suggests air frying or baking food instead. Additionally, she also stresses on the importance of changing your cooking oil after every 1 or 2 months.

“Your body needs at least 9 essential fatty acids. All kinds of oils will have different components of essential fatty acids. If you change your oil regularly, it will enable your body to get all the essential fatty acids. Rice bran oil, sunflower oil, flaxseed oil, etc are oils you should try after every 1 or 2 months,” says Nmami while adding that this is something which should be followed by people who have normal cholesterol levels as well.

Foods to eat

Nmami suggests that people with high cholesterol levels should consume whole grains like oats, barley, jowar, etc. “They are good for people with high cholesterol levels as well as those who suffer from high blood pressure problems. Also, low-fat dairy products are recommended for people with high cholesterol,” she says.

Besides the foods to eat and avoid, she stresses on the importance of eating everything in moderation. “Let’s talk about egg yolk. If people with high cholesterol levels are having 1 whole egg with yolk in day, it is perfectly fine. But having 3-4 eggs can be a little problematic. Hence, moderation is the key to eating food when you have high cholesterol levels,” explains the nutritionist.

Furthermore, speaking about fats, people with high cholesterol can have sources of good fats like nuts, almonds, walnuts and avocados. “I would say that ghar ka khana is the best to deal with conditions like high cholesterol. Include foods like ginger, garlic, coriander and cinnamon to name a few, and you’re good to go!”

(Nmami Agarwal is a celebrity nutritionist)



Hepatitis A Causes and Symptoms

The Kashmir Monitor



Generally speaking, hepatitis A is more common in parts of the planet that are developing. It’s for the fact that sanitation and food handling practices are by and large poor. However, medical experts say that living in developed countries can also put you at risk of having hepatitis A, but it’s really a rare occurrence.

Just like what’s mentioned earlier, hepatitis A is caused by the hepatitis A virus or HAV. It can be spread around by someone who has hepatitis A because he or she is a carrier of the virus behind it. It is said that a person with hepatitis A is most infectious about 2 weeks before he or she begins to experience signs and symptoms.

Here are some of the ways that hepatitis A is spread around:


Consumption of food that is prepared by a person who has hepatitis A. This is most especially true if he or she has not properly washed his or her hands.

Drinking of water that is contaminated with the hepatitis A virus.

Intake of raw or undercooked seafood obtained from contaminated water.

Close contact with someone who has hepatitis A. This includes having sexual intercourse with an infected person, especially when the rectal or anal area has been touched with the fingers, mouth or tongue.

Using illegal drugs, especially when paraphernalia contaminated with the hepatitis A virus are used.


Medical experts say that it may take a while before the various signs and symptoms associated with hepatitis A show up. They say that someone may experience them about 4 weeks after getting infected. It’s even possible for someone with hepatitis A to not experience any sign and symptom at all.

Some of the initial signs and symptoms of hepatitis A include:

Tiredness and malaise
Achy muscles and joints
Pain in the upper right section of the abdomen
Loss of appetite
Mild fever
Sore throat
Diarrhea or constipation
Hives or raised rash that’s itchy

These initial signs and symptoms associated with hepatitis A can last anywhere from a few days only to a couple of weeks. Afterwards, as the infection of the liver progresses, the following may be experienced by the individual:

Jaundice, which is the yellowing of the skin as well as the whites of the eyes (sclera)

Pale colored stools
Dark colored urine
Skin itching

Tenderness and swelling of the upper right section of the abdomen

Although it rarely happens, hepatitis A can cause liver failure. When such develops, the person who is infected may experience severe vomiting, frequent bruising, bleeding of the nose and gums, drowsiness and confusion.

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Busting myths around blood donation

The Kashmir Monitor



As per the World Health Organisation (WHO) norms, ideally, one per cent of the total population should regularly donate blood to meet the requirements, which is anywhere between 1% and 3% of country’s population that would require blood in a year.

Contrary to the myth about blood donations making a person weak or anaemic, the body replenishes the lost blood in a matter of a few days, say experts.

“A healthy bone marrow makes a constant supply of red cells, plasma and platelets, so there is no question of becoming weak, much less anaemic. It is a myth and should not deter people from donating blood,” says Dr RK Singal, chairman, internal medicine department, BLK super-speciality Hospital.


The donors can give either whole blood or specific blood components, as there is sophisticated equipment available these days that extract relevant components from blood and the rest of the blood can be transfused back to the donor.

As per the World Health Organisation (WHO) norms, ideally, one per cent of the total population should regularly donate blood to meet the requirements, which is anywhere between 1% and 3% of country’s population that would require blood in a year.

About 65% of India’s population is young and if this section donates blood regularly, chances of the country facing blood shortage will be remote. Hence, there is all the more reason for people, especially youngsters, to come forward and be regular blood donors.

How to prepare

Have enough fruit juice and water in the night and morning before you donate

Have a full meal 3 hours before donation; never on an empty stomach

Have some rest for about 10-15 minutes after donation

Have some snacks or a juice with high sugar content after donation

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Erectile dysfunction’s connection with lifestyle

The Kashmir Monitor



By Dr Anjani Kumar Agrawal

healthy-lifestyle-can-reverse-effects-of-hypertensionAll over the world, but perhaps more so in India, men are embarrassed to admit that they may have a problem getting or keeping an erection — a condition known as erectile dysfunction (ED).

All over the world, but perhaps more so in India, men are embarrassed to admit that they may have a problem getting or keeping an erection — a condition known as erectile dysfunction (ED). From my research, I have found a strong link between ED and stress. Other major causes include smoking, drinking, diabetes, hypertension or high blood pressure and cholesterol levels. My advice to these patients is — do not get even more stressed over this situation. Instead, focus on taking the right medication and making some changes to your lifestyle, so you can once again enjoy a satisfactory sexual life.



We normally diagnose ED and its underlying causes by asking the patient a few questions about his medical and sexual history. This is sometimes done by sharing a questionnaire with the patient. The questions that we ask are designed to help us understand the cause of ED in the particular patient.

We also do a physical exam, ask for certain blood tests to rule out other medical conditions responsible for erectile dysfunction, and recommend imaging tests (if required) to determine whether the person is physically able to have an erection or not.


Underlying medical conditions such as diabetes, hypertension and hypercholesterolaemia (high cholesterol levels) can cause ED. In these cases, ED can be reversed once the patient starts treatment.

In my experience, many men suffer from ED because of work stress, family pressure and anxiety. So, changes in lifestyle with regular exercise, yoga, abstaining from alcohol and smoking, and proper counselling help in treating ED. Along with this, medicines for ED are usually prescribed for about 3 to 6 months by which time lifestyle changes start to take effect and the patient is physically and mentally healthier, which helps resolve the problem.

An estimated 16% to 25% of men experience ED at some point in their lives. I would urge them not to be embarrassed about it. Seek medical help from a urologist or andrologist; get the necessary advice/medication; and go on to enjoy a healthy, fulfilling sexual life.

The author of this article is Dr Anjani Kumar Agrawal, head, andrology, department of urology sciences, Max Smart Super Speciality Hospital, Saket

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June 2019
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