Discover the main foods high in triglycerides and learn how they can affect your health.

Discover the main foods high in triglycerides and learn how they can affect your health.

Triglycerides are a type of fat found in the bloodstream. They are the most common form of fat in the body and are mainly stored in adipose tissue (fat cells) for future energy use. Although it is essential to have some triglycerides for the normal functioning of the organism, high levels can increase the risk of cardiovascular diseases. One way to control triglycerides is modifying the diet. Following a low diet in triglycerides rich can help maintain healthy levels and reduce the risk of associated health problems.

It is known that some foods are especially rich in triglycerides. They include certain types of meat, processed foods, sugary snacks and drinks. It is important that people with high levels of triglycerides limit the consumption of these foods. Making conscious decisions and opting for healthier alternatives, people can effectively control their triglycerides and promote general wel l-being.

1. Red meats: consume excessive amounts of red meat such as veal, lamb and pig can contribute to raising triglycerid levels. These meats usually contain high levels of saturated fat and cholesterol, which can cause an increase in triglycerides in the body.

2. Processed foods: processed foods, including fast food items, frozen foods and packaged snacks, tend to have a high tran s-fat content, added sugars and unhealthy oils. These ingredients can not only increase triglycerides, but also lead to weight gain and other health problems.

3. Drinks and sugary snacks: foods and drinks with high added sugars, such as candies, pastries, soft drinks and sugary juices, can considerably raise triglycerid levels. The organism metabolizes excess sugar in triglycerides, which causes an increase in its circulating levels.

Foods High in Triglycerides

1. Saturated fats: Foods rich in saturated fats can significantly raise triglycerid levels. These fats are usually found in products of animal origin, such as fatty meat cuts, whole dairy products and butter. The consumption of these foods should be limited or replaced by healthier alternatives to reduce triglyceride levels.

  • Processed meats: processed meats such as sausages, hot dogs and beicon have a high saturated fat content and should be avoided or consumed in moderation to maintain triglycerides under control.
  • Fast food: fast food products such as hamburgers, fried chicken and fried potatoes usually cook in unhealthy oils and contain high levels of saturated fats.
  • Dairy products: whole dairy products, such as whole milk, cheese and ice cream, can contribute to increase triglycerides. Opting lo w-fat or skimmed alternatives is a healthier option.

It is important to limit the intake of foods rich in saturated fats to maintain healthy triglycerides and reduce the risk of heart disease.

2. Refined carbohydrates: The consumption of large amounts of refined carbohydrates can also raise triglycerid levels. These carbohydrates are usually found in processed foods and drinks, such as white bread, pasta, sugary snacks and sugary drinks. Replacing them with comprehensive options and reducing total sugar intake can help reduce triglycerides.

  • Suggage drinks: soft drinks, sugary juices, energy drinks and sports drinks have a high added sugar content, which can increase triglycerid levels. Instead, opt for water, suga r-free tea or natural fruit juices.
  • White flour products: food made with refined white flour, such as white bread, salty cookies and pastries, can cause a rapid increase in triglycerid levels. Choose integral alternatives to improve heart health.
  • Azucated snacks: sugary snacks such as cookies, cakes and candies not only contribute to weight gain, but also raise triglycerides. Opt for healthier snacks such as fruits, nuts or yogurt.

Incorporating whole grains and reducing the consumption of refined carbohydrates and added sugars is crucial to maintain healthy triglycerides.

The role of triglycerides in the body

The Functions of Triglycerides

1. Energy storage: One of the main functions of triglycerides is to store energy in the body. When we consume more calories than our body needs at a given time, excess energy becomes triglycerides and is stored in adipose tissue. This stored fat can be used as a source of energy during fasting periods or when energy needs increase.

2. Isolation and protection: Triglycerides also serve as insulation and protection for the vital organs of the body. The adipose tissue, where triglycerides are stored, acts like a cushion around the organs, helping to protect them from physical damage and providing thermal insulation to maintain body temperature.

Triglycerides play a crucial role in the organism, since they provide a source of energy, anise and protect the organs and contribute to the absorption and transport of fa t-soluble vitamins.

Transportation and Absorption

Triglycerides have another important function in the body, which is the transport and absorption of fa t-soluble vitamins. Liposoluble vitamins, such as vitamins A, D, E and K, need fat molecules to be absorbed and transported effectively by the body. Triglycerides act as carriers of these vitamins, allowing them to be absorbed in the intestines and transported through the bloodstream to the various organs and tissues that need them.

  • Triglycerides are necessary for the absorption and use of fa t-soluble vitamins.
  • They act as carriers of these vitamins, helping their transport within the body.
  • Without adequate levels of triglycerides, the absorption and use of these essential vitamins can be compromised.

The Dangers of High Triglyceride Levels

High levels of triglycerides can increase the risk of developing cardiovascular diseases, including myocardial infarction and stroke. This is because high levels of triglycerides can contribute to the accumulation of fatty deposits in blood vessels, which leads to a disease called atherosclerosis. Atherosclerosis occurs when arteries narrow and harden due to plaque accumulation, a fat substance composed of cholesterol, triglycerides and other substances. Over time, this can restrict blood flow to vital organs and increase the probability that cardiovascular episodes occur.

Important note: People with high levels of triglycerides should pay special attention to their diet and lifestyle to effectively control their disease. An adequate diet, regular exercise and medication can contribute to reducing triglycerides and minimizing associated health risks.

  • Obesity: Excess weight, especially in the abdominal zone, is closely related to high levels of triglycerides. Losing weight through a combination of healthy diet and regular physical activity can help reduce triglycerides.
  • Dietary factors: A diet rich in refined carbohydrates, sugars and saturated fats can contribute to raising triglycerides. It is important to focus on the consumption of fibe r-rich foods, such as fruits, vegetables and whole grains, and limit the intake of processed and fried foods.
  • Alcohol consumption: alcohol intake, especially in large quantities and regularly, can significantly increase triglycerides. It is advisable to moderate or refrain from alcohol consumption to maintain healthy levels of triglycerides.
  1. Physical activity: It has been shown that regular exercise increases high density lipoprotein cholesterol (HDL), also known as “good” cholesterol, which can help reduce triglycerid levels. Performing activities such as walking at a light pace, running, swimming or bicycle for at least 30 minutes a day can have a positive impact on triglycerid levels.
  2. Medication: In some cases, modifications of lifestyle alone may not be enough to reduce triglycerid levels. In these cases, health professionals can prescribe medications such as statins or fibrates to help control the disease. It is important to follow the prescribed medication regime and consult the doctor periodically.
Beneficial foods Harmful foods
Fatty fish: rich in omega-3 fatty acids, which can help reduce triglycerid levels. Sweet sweets and drinks: rich in added sugars, which can raise triglycerides levels
Nuces and seeds: They contain healthy fats and fiber that can compensate for the high levels of triglycerides Saturated and trans fats: They are found in processed and fried foods and can increase triglycerides.
Whole cereals: rich in fiber and nutrients, which can help regulate triglycerides levels Refined carbohydrates: White bread, pasta and rice with added sugars can raise triglycerides levels

Foods to Avoid for Lower Triglyceride Levels

When it comes to controlling triglycerides, it is important to avoid certain foods that can contribute to their increase. These foods are usually rich in saturated and trans fats, as well as refined carbohydrates and added sugars. Limiting the consumption of these foods, it can help reduce their triglyceride levels and improve their cardiovascular health.

Foods to Avoid

  • Fried foods: fried or fried foods in pan, such as fried potatoes, fried chicken and donuts, usually have a high content of no n-healthy fats and calories. These unhealthy fats can increase triglycerides.
  • Packaged snacks: processed snacks, such as fried potatoes, cookies and crackers, usually contain trans fats and large amounts of added sugars. These ingredients can contribute to raising triglycerides.
  • Suggage drinks: the usual consumption of sugary drinks, such as soft drinks, energy drinks and sugary fruit juices, can significantly increase triglycerides. Opt for water, suga r-free tea or infused water with natural flavors as healthier alternatives.

Did you know? According to the American Heart Association, a high level of triglycerides is considered equal to or greater than 150 milligrams per deciliter (mg/dl), while an optimal level is less than 100 mg/dl.

Healthy Fats: Beneficial for Triglyceride Management

Unlike unhealthy fats, such as trans and saturated fats, healthy fats have shown numerous benefits for triglycerides. These fats are usually found in foods derived from plants and fish. They can help lower triglycerides, reduce inflammation, increase HDL cholesterol (high density lipoproteins) and maintain a healthy heart. When including healthy fats in our diet, it is important to wisely choose the right sources.

Omega-3 fatty acids: present in fatty fish such as salmon, mackerel and sardines, omega-3 fatty acids have been widely studied for their beneficial effects for heart health. These fats can not only reduce triglycerides, but also help reduce blood pressure and reduce the risk of abnormal heart rhythms.

Incorporating omega-3 fatty acids to your diet can be as simple as enjoying a ration of grilled salmon or adding can to a salad. Including these fish in your weekly food plan is an excellent and delicious way to increase your omega-3 fatty acid intake.

Monounsaturated fats: Foods rich in monounsaturated fats, such as avocados, olive oil and nuts, can also be beneficial to control triglycerides. These fats help increase HDL cholesterol levels, which is usually called “good” cholesterol, while reducing LDL cholesterol (low density lipoprotein), commonly known as “bad” cholesterol.

To incorporate monounsaturated fats to your diet, spray some olive oil on your salad or use it to cook instead of other less healthy options. Adding a handful of nuts, such as almonds or nuts, at the time of the appetizer can also provide a dose of these cardiosaludable fats.


Including healthy fats in your diet can have a positive effect on controlling triglyceride levels. Omega-3 fatty acids, found in fatty fish, and monounsaturated fats, found in foods such as avocado and olive oil, have been shown to reduce triglycerides and promote heart health. By making simple adjustments to your meal plan, such as incorporating these healthy fats, you can proactively manage your triglyceride levels and support overall cardiovascular wellness.

The Benefits of a Low Glycemic Index Diet on Triglyceride Levels

A low glycemic index diet focuses on eating foods that have the least impact on blood sugar levels. The glycemic index measures how quickly carbohydrates in food break down and cause blood sugar levels to rise. Foods with a high glycemic index are digested and absorbed quickly, causing an increase in blood sugar levels. In contrast, foods with a low glycemic index are digested and absorbed more slowly, causing a more gradual rise in blood sugar levels.

Low glycemic index diet: By selecting foods with a low glycemic index, people can help stabilize their blood sugar levels and avoid rapid spikes. This is especially important for controlling triglyceride levels, as high blood sugar levels can contribute to increased triglyceride production in the liver.

Increased consumption of foods rich in fiber: A low glycemic index diet usually includes foods rich in fiber, such as whole grains, legumes, fruits and vegetables. These high-fiber foods have been shown to reduce triglyceride levels by slowing glucose absorption and increasing feelings of satiety, thereby controlling blood sugar and triglyceride levels.

Additionally, a low-glycemic diet typically emphasizes the inclusion of healthy fats, lean proteins, and a limited amount of processed carbohydrates, which can further help control triglyceride levels. Incorporating these dietary changes can produce significant improvements in triglyceride levels and overall cardiovascular health.

Best Food Choices to Reduce Triglyceride Levels

1. Choose foods rich in omega-3 fatty acids

Omega-3 fatty acids have been shown to help reduce triglyceride levels. Include foods such as fatty fish (salmon, tuna, mackerel), walnuts, flax seeds, and chia seeds in your diet. All of these foods are excellent sources of omega-3 fatty acids and can help lower triglyceride levels.

2. Opt for whole grains and foods rich in fiber

Integral cereals and fibe r-rich foods are not only good for digestion, but they can also help reduce triglycerides. Choose grains, cereals and integral paste instead of their refined equivalents. In addition, include many fruits, vegetables, legumes and nuts in your diet. These foods are rich in fiber, which can help reduce triglycerides.

  • Include fatty fish such as salmon, tuna and mackerel in your diet, since they are rich in omega-3 fatty acids.
  • Walnuts, linen seeds and chia seeds are also excellent sources of omega-3 fatty acids.
  • Whole grains such as whole wheat bread, integral rice and oats are good options to reduce triglycerid levels.
  • Do not forget to include abundant fruits, vegetables, vegetables and nuts, since they are rich in fiber.

3. Limit saturated fats and avoid trans fats

Saturated fats and trans fats can raise their triglycerides. Limit the consumption of foods rich in saturated fats such as fatty meats, whole dairy products and tropical oils such as coconut and palm. It is also important to avoid foods with trans fats, such as fried and packaged products.

Foods rich in saturated fats Foods high in trans fats
Fat meats Fried foods
Fatty dairy products Baked products such as pastries and donuts
Tropical oils (coconut, palm oil) Processed snacks

If you choose intelligent foods and incorporate these recommendations to your diet, you can effectively reduce your triglycerid levels and improve your heart health in general.

Author of the article
Dr.Greenblatt M.
Dr.Greenblatt M.
Medical oncologist at the Robert Larner College of Medicine, MD, at the University of Vermont

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