It is unfortunate that some women do tend to gain weight when they enter the menopause. Because you also have high cholesterol, you may benefit from using a low-fat, low-cholesterol diet. You would need to lower your intakes of total fat, saturated fat and cholesterol so that you can lower your blood cholesterol levels. You will basically have to eat a diet that is low in total fat, saturated fat, and cholesterol, and high in dietary fibre and protective nutrients - this entails eating plenty of fruit and vegetables, low-fat milk and dairy products, very lean meat, fish, only 4 eggs per week and only mono- or polyunsaturated margarine or oil (you can use 3 T of olive oil per day for example). Click on 'Diet' and 'Weight loss' and 'Slimming Diet' for a copy of a low-fat, high-fibre diet. You need to check the foods you buy in the supermarket - compare the total fat content of say standard Vienna sausages and that of Low-fat or Lean Viennas - if the latter still contain more than 3g of fat per 100g, then it is better to avoid them. Rather use less processed food, e.g. cook chicken without skin and without added fat (grill or boil in a stew), to have greater control of the fat content than when you eat processed foods. It is good that you are using omega-3 fatty acids as they help to reduce blood cholesterol. You can also try using Flora pro-activ margarine which contains plant sterols to lower blood cholesterol (most supermarkets sell this type of margarine). For additional articles, click on 'Diet & Nutrition' and 'You are what you eat' and read the 'Healthy Heart' section. If you require a specific diet to be worked out for you, then I would recommend that you consult a registered dietitian (visit the Association for Dietetics in SA Website at: www.adsa.org.za and click on "Find a Dietitian" to find a dietitian in your area).
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