VCH BARCELONA AND CHOLESTEROL
Publish on: 06 August 2015
Despite its low incidence in comparison to other developed countries in Northern Europe or America, and the stabilization of mortality rates over the past few years, cardiovascular diseases (ischaemic heart disease, cerebrovascular disease, peripheral arterial disease and aortic aneurysm) are the first cause of morbidity and mortality in Spain. Several genetic and environmental factors are involved in the development of atherosclerosis, which is responsible for most cardiovascular diseases. Among these factors, diet is very important, both for its influence in cholesterol and triglyceride blood levels and its effect on other factors related to the development of atheroma plates on the arterial wall: obesity, insulin-resistance, blood pressure, lipid oxidation, inflammation and thrombosis.
Recommendations for the prevention of cardiovascular diseases
- Adopt healthy eating habits based on a balanced, varied and adequate diet.
- If necessary, reduce body weight to reach a near-normal normal weight (low-calorie diet).
- Perform physical exercise regularly. At least 3 days a week, perform some kind of physical aerobic exercise (exercise that is healthy for the heart) such as walking briskly, running, riding a bicycle, swimming.... for approximately 30 minutes.
- Avoid eating foods that are rich in saturated fats and cholesterol.
- Reduce the consumption of sweet food and sugar.
- Avoid smoking.
- Limit alcohol consumption.
- Drink water regularly. Drink between 8 and 10 glasses of water a day. Consider drinking Vichy Barcelona natural carbonated mineral water.
Recommended foods that ensure a healthy-heart diet:
- Avoid eating fatty meat and entrails.
- Avoid eating sausages in general ("chorizo", salami, pâté, "sobrasada"...).
- Rabbit and fowl may be consumed regularly (not duck). Remove the skin from the chicken and any visible fat from the meat before cooking.
- Increase the consumption of fresh white and blue fish and shellfish (clams, cockles).
- Limit the consumption of crustaceans (prawns, shrimps) and cephalopods (squid), and fish eggs.
- Limit the consumption of eggs yolks to 2 to 3 per week.
- Consume pulses (peas, lentils, chick peas, beans...) 3 to 4 times per week.
- Cereals and starch are the basis of our diet. Whenever possible, it is advisable to eat wholemeal cereals (which are richer in fibre) such as wholemeal bread, wholemeal rice, wholemeal breakfast cereal, wholemeal pasta...
- Take skimmed or semi-skimmed dairy products (milk, yoghourt and low-fat soft cheese)
- Fruit and vegetables. These must always be part of our daily food intake. They are a source of vitamins, minerals and fibre.
- It is advisable to eat 30 g/day of dried fruit (equivalent to a handful of dried fruit).
- It is advisable to use olive oil for cooking and for seasoning food. Avoid eating processed buns (croissants, doughnuts, pastries..) chocolate, cakes or pies, savoury snacks of all kinds such as crisps, hoops, etc.....
A study conducted by the CSIC (Spanish Council for Scientific Research) has established that drinking one litre of Vichy Barcelona water per day with meals reduces LDL (bad cholesterol) levels and increases HDL (good cholesterol) levels, thereby keeping the heart healthy.
The study was designed to investigate the potential beneficial effects of drinking Vichy Barcelona on lipoprotein metabolism and to establish whether this type of water has an effect on endothelial diffusion (ED).
The study was performed over a sample of 18 healthy, post-menopausal women aged 50-60 years, who were not treated with any drug therapy or nutritional supplements, or hormone replacement therapy,
with a BMI of <30, and were not obese.
The study was divided up into two periods of two months each. During the first period, women drank 1 litre of still water with a low mineral content per day (control water). During the second period, women drank carbonated water with a high mineral content.
At the beginning and end of each period, blood was drawn under fasting conditions, to measure total cholesterol, HDL-cholesterol and LDL-cholesterol, triglycerides, etc. Blood pressure, weight, and the daily intake of food and drink were recorded.
THROUGHOUT THE STUDY, BLOOD PRESSURE WAS FOUND TO REMAIN UNCHANGED. FOLLOWING THE CONSUMPTION OF VICHY BARCELONA FOR TWO MONTHS, TOTAL CHOLESTEROL AND LDL CHOLESTEROL LEVELS FELL BY 14.8%, AND HDL CHOLESTEROL LEVELS INCREASED BY 8.7%, AS COMPARED TO THE CONTROL PERIOD.