What is the current state of knowledge regarding cholesterol? Small LDL particles do matter, but these reduce when you eat saturated fat.

MAIN PRINCIPLE 1: Cholesterol level (in all its complexity) is just ONE of many predictors of heart disease. Further, in most cases its impact is NOT what has been commonly known to doctors. Things are far more complicated. One must not jump to any conclusions based on any cholesterol level figures. The data need to be considered VERY CAREFULLY, and together with a large number of other factors, such as C-reactive protein and homocysteine, apolipoprotein and many others.

MAIN PRINCIPLE 2: 80 to 90 per cent of the body’s cholesterol is genetically programmed and is produced by the body. “Cholesterol is a vital component of every cell membrane on Earth. In other words, there is no life on Earth that can live without cholesterol.” [Source] + “cholesterol is one of the “most vital” molecules in the body and prevents infection, cancer, muscle pain and other conditions in elderly people.” [Source – read the paper here]. Don’t bother about cholesterol in things you eat (e.g. eggs and prawns).

The body tightly regulates the amount of cholesterol in the blood by controlling its production of cholesterol. When your dietary intake of cholesterol goes down, your body makes more. When you eat larger amounts of cholesterol, your body makes less [Source]

For six years [Indian researcher, Malhotra] had registered how many people had died from a heart attack among more than one million employees of the Indian railways. According to Malhotra’s report; employees who lived in Madras had the highest mortality. It was six to seven times higher than in Punjab, the district with the lowest mortality, and the people from Madras also died at a much younger age. People in Punjab consumed almost seventeen times more fat than people from Madras and most of it was animal fat. In addition they also smoked much more than in Madras. [Source: Uffe Ravnskov, Ignore the Awkward.: How the Cholesterol Myths Are Kept Alive]

And DO NOT CUT DOWN SATURATED FATS (but the middle path principle applies).

START BY READING THESE BOOKS

Uffe Ravnskov, Ignore the Awkward.: How the Cholesterol Myths Are Kept Alive

and Dr. Malcolm Kendrick’s The Great Cholesterol Con: The Truth About What Really Causes Heart Disease and How to Avoid It

And watch this:

and

 

WHAT IS THE CORRELATION BETWEEN DIETARY FAT AND HEART DISEASE?

Very little. This chart gives it all away (the white line is the FRAUDULENT line presented by a “medical scientist” to fool the world. The other numbers are the real numbers. No correlation. Mexicans consumer a large proportion of their calories from fat but have very little cardiac disease. There is tons of other data that confirms that there is NO correlation between consumption of fat (as generally understood) and heart disease.

WHAT IS THE CORRELATION BETWEEN DIETARY FAT AND HEART DISEASE?

This, too, is very weak. “After an examination of almost one thousand patients during surgery, American and world-renowned heart surgeon Michael DeBakey came up with the same message: Atherosclerosis has nothing to do with the concentration of cholesterol in the blood.” ( Garrett HA and others. JAMA 1964;189:655-9.) – cited in Uffe Ravnskov, Ignore the Awkward.: How the Cholesterol Myths Are Kept Alive

IGNORE TOTAL CHOLESTEROL

Total Cholesterol Level is NOT a Great Indicator of Your Heart Disease Risk [Source]

  • unless it is VERY high

But – HDL/TOTAL CHOLESTEROL RATIO >0.25 is good. [Source]

IS HIGH High-density lipoprotein (HDL) GOOD? NOT NECESSARILY

“according to several recent studies, good cholesterol alone has little ability to lower heart-disease risks, and more is not necessarily better.” HDL is not a very good therapeutic target,” says cardiologist Dennis Ko, a senior scientist at the Toronto-based Institute for Clinical Evaluative Sciences. What’s more, Ko’s own research suggests that above a certain threshold, more HDL could increase health risks.[Source]

IS HIGH LDL (Low-density lipoprotein) BAD? NOT NECESSARILY.

Relying on LDL-C alone can be misleading. [Source]

In fact, “older people with high LDL (low-density lipoprotein) levels, the so-called “bad” cholesterol, lived longer and had less heart disease.” [Source]

LDL type AND number of particles matters

People who have mainly large LDL particles actually have a lower risk of heart disease [Source]

Only the so-called small dense LDL particles can potentially be a problem, because they can squeeze through the lining of the arteries and if they oxidize, otherwise known as turning rancid, they can cause damage and inflammation. [Source]

High numbers of small, dense LDL particles are associated with increased risk for coronary heart disease in prospective epidemiologic studies. Subjects with small, dense particles (phenotype B) are at higher risk than those with larger, more buoyant LDL particles (phenotype A). [Source]

Blood levels of LDL-P and apolipoprotein B are strongly correlated with the risk of coronary heart disease. Both these measurements reflect the actual number of LDL-particles. A high TG/HDL-C ratio likely reflects a large number of LDL-particles

HOW DO YOU REDUCE THE BAD (SMALL) LDL?

American researcher Ronald Krauss found that the most useful risk marker, the best predictor of myocardial infarction among the blood lipids, wasn’t the total amount of cholesterol in the blood, neither was it the ‘bad guy’, LDL cholesterol. It was a special type of LDL particles, the small and dense ones. The most surprising finding was that if somebody ate a large amount of saturated fat, then the number of these small, dense LDL particles decreased. [Source: Uffe Ravnskov, Ignore the Awkward.: How the Cholesterol Myths Are Kept Alive]

Trygliceride/HDL ratio is very important

Many studies have found that the triglyceride/HDL cholesterol ratio (TG/HDL-C ratio) correlates strongly with the incidence and extent of coronary artery disease. This relationship is true both for men and women. One study found that a TG/HDL-C ratio above 1.74 was the most powerful independent predictor of developing coronary artery disease.  TG/HDL-C ratio less than 0.87 is ideal.  [Source]

OTHER THINGS TO DO TO MONITOR HEART RISK

CRP

if you have chronic inflammation is a C-reactive protein (CRP) blood test. CRP level is used as a marker of inflammation in your arteries.

Generally speaking:

— A CRP level under 1 milligrams per liter of blood means you have a low risk for cardiovascular disease

— 1 to 3 milligrams means your risk is intermediate

— More than 3 milligrams is high risk [Source]

Also: homocysteine and apolipoprotein.

Coronary calcium scan 

The coronary calcium scan … looks at plaque in the arteries leading to the heart. Plaque in these arteries is a red flag for a potential heart attack. [Source]

Ultrasound of the carotid artery

This scan “looks at plaque in the main blood vessel leading to the brain. Plaque in the carotid artery is a sign of increased risk for a heart attack and stroke.” [Source]

Cut down infections

There is evidence that infections are associated with heart disease.

KEYWORDS

Does cholesterol matter? Cholesterol and fat myths.

sabhlok

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