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Dietary Tips for Hyperlipidaemia

A common misconception when it comes to healthy eating is we need to “eat clean” by staying away from all fats and oils, but in fact fats have important functions and are needed in our body, we just need to know how to pick the right ones to eat.


Dietary fats we consume affect our blood lipid levels in different ways. As we can see, not all dietary fats are the same and unsaturated fats are considered beneficial for our health.

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Five Dietary Tips

Common Food Sources

  • Unsaturated fats

    • Monounsaturated fats

      • Vegetable oils (e.g. olive oil, canola oil, peanut oil)

      • Avocados

      • Nuts (e.g. almond, hazelnut, walnuts, cashews)

      • Seeds (e.g. pumpkin seeds, pine seeds, sesame)

    • Polyunsaturated fats

      • Oily fish (e.g. salmon, sardines, mackerel), providing the well-known omega-3 fats

      • Vegetable oils (e.g. sunflower oil, corn oil)

  • Saturated fats

    • Animal fats (e.g. fatty meat, sausages, butter, cheese, cream)

    • Some vegetable oils (e.g. coconut oil, palm oil)

  • Trans fat

    • Margarine, cakes, fried foods and packaged foods such as cookies and potato chips

Recommended fat intake


According to the World Health Organization (WHO) and the Food and Agricultural Organization (FAO) of the United Nations, we should:

  • Limit daily total fat intake between 15% to 30% of total daily energy

  • Limit saturated fat to less than 10% of total daily energy

  • Limit trans fat to less than 1% of total daily energy

Dietary recommendations on fats

The Hong Kong Department of Health recommends limiting to a maximum of six servings of fats and oils used for cooking every day, where one serving equals to:

  • Vegetable oil x 1 teaspoon

  • Salad dressing x 1 tablespoon

  • Peanut butter x 2 teaspoons


Additional dietary factors to look out for

There is more to how you can improve your blood lipid profile! In general, a balanced diet with a “3 Low 1 High” (meaning low fat, low salt, low sugar and high fibre) should be followed. Soluble fibre binds to fats and helps to remove them from the body. Try to eat at least five servings of fruit and vegetables everyday with lots of wholegrains. Soy products such as tofu and soybean milk are rich sources of isoflavones, a component shown to potentially help reduce “bad” cholesterol levels in the blood, so remember to include these in the diet also.

provided by HKDA
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