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Saturated Fat/Cholesterol is NOT the devil

Many people are aware of the importance of eating organic food, grass fed beef, free ranging chickens, non-conventional dairy, while staying away from high fructose corn syrup, processed meats and grains, and produce sprayed heavily with chemicals. We’ve heard it before in conversation, advertisements, news articles, etc. What alot of people may not know about is the significance and implications of choosing the former over the latter as it relates to cholesterol levels on the body, either endogenously (within the body) or exogenously (consumed through food).

I came across this¬†article¬†discussing LDL/HDL cholesterol, and how saturated fat has been wrongly accused of being one of the main contributors towards high cholesterol. Drug companies love this whole good cholesterol/bad cholesterol phenomena because it allows them to come up with over the counter medications to “fix” the individuals “cholesterol problems” (which, inadvertently allows them to make $14 Billion a year, where, for alot of individuals, if they took a little better care of their diet and exercise, they wouldn’t need that medication to begin with). Dr. Ronald Krauss talks about 3 different scenarios (from most severe to least severe) that lead individuals to heart disease, namely:

  1. High levels of smaller and medium LDL combined with low HDL
    2. Low HDL levels
    3. High total LDL levels

This being the case, and also figuring in that we know saturated fat is linked to increases in cholesterol (the TYPE of cholesterol that is increased is the BIGGEST argument that needs to be discussed), we see that saturated fat is merely a MARGINAL predictor of heart disease. In fact, no where was there even a mention of “total cholesterol” which is exactly what doctors have been telling us for years to keep low, otherwise it will surely lead us to having heart disease.

Stop, rewind, hang on a sec.

Mike, what the heck are you saying?

Well, let me see if I can put it more simply:

– Total Cholesterol = HDL (simplistically, the “good”) + LDL (simplistically, the “bad”)

– Saturated Fat consumption is linked to higher LDL levels, but the TYPE of LDL (Large, medium, small, very small) that is raised is determined by the SOURCE of saturated fat (the saturated fat in grass fed beef is ALOT HEALTHIER for your body than the saturated fat found in processed hot dogs, for example)

– Since this is the case, you could have a high LDL, and may not be as “unhealthy” or “at risk” for cardiovascular disease as your doctor says you are, if there is no way that your doctor controlled for teasing apart the TYPE of LDL that is high in your body.

I hope that made a little more sense.

So, comparing this with Dr. Krauss’ research that shows cholesterol is not all its so negatively chalked up to be, and add in the landmark article that Time Magazine published recently

(here is an opinion piece summarizing it), also, take into account this

LA Times article illustrating the same concept,

and, low and behold, we have the classic definition of making a mountain out of a mohill, or, better yet, making chemical warfare out of a baby’s fart:

Take-home messages:
– saturated fat consumption and its “negative” effects on your health are SOURCE DEPENDENT.
– eating organic food, grass fed beef, free ranging chickens, non-conventional dairy, while staying away from high fructose corn syrup, processed meats and grains, and produce sprayed heavily with chemicals will greatly improve your cholesterol health measures
– LDL Cholesterol measures need to tease apart the 4 different kinds of LDL cholesterol to get a better idea of whether the LDL measures in the body can be quantified as “healthy” or “unhealthy”
– Total Cholesterol is a piss poor predictor of CVD
– Baby farts smell weird and terrible at the same time.
– I’m gonna go buy some baby powder…

And, on that note, I’m out.

MG

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