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U.S. Adds TLC to New Cholesterol Guide

80-page publication offers prescription for therapeutic lifestyle changes

MONDAY, Aug. 28, 2006 (HealthDay News) -- A new publication that tells people how to make lifestyle changes to reduce high cholesterol levels and lower their risk for heart disease has been issued by the U.S. National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute.

Your Guide to Lowering Your Cholesterol With TLC (Therapeutic Lifestyle Changes) comes just in time for National Cholesterol Education Month in September.

The 80-page guide offers a detailed program of diet, physical activity, and weight management designed to help people reduce their cholesterol levels.

"Lifestyle is crucial for lowering cholesterol but it's not enough to tell people it's important -- you have to help them do it. This guide offers a set of tools to help people get started and to embrace a heart-healthier way of living," Dr. James Cleeman, coordinator of the National Cholesterol Education Program, said in a prepared statement.

The booklet explains that you need to reduce your intake of saturated fat, trans fat, and cholesterol to lower LDL (bad) cholesterol. To help you do that, the guide offers advice on choosing and preparing low-fat meals, selecting healthy snacks, and reading nutrition labels.

It also emphasizes the importance of soluble fiber and plant stanols and sterols, substances derived from plants that help block cholesterol absorption.

Along with contributing to weight gain, inactivity raises LDL cholesterol and lowers HDL (good) cholesterol. The guide offers a step-by-step program to help people get active.

"TLC is more than a diet. It's really a change in your way of living to help you stay heart healthy," Cleeman said.

More information

Here's where you can find the Your Guide to Lowering Your Cholesterol with TLC .

SOURCE: U.S. National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute, news release, Aug. 24, 2006
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