I did my Nutrition Masters thesis surrounding the topic of heart disease and inflammation. I really wanted to do it on a topic directly related to diabetes, but at the time this project was the closest thing available. Inflammation is involved in most conditions, including diabetes, so I did learn a lot.
And during that time I also became aware of some very large myths about cholesterol and the whole concept of how heart disease develops.
For years now we’ve all been led to believe that certain foods high in ‘bad’ cholesterol are the type of foods we should steer clear of.
We get this picture of foods like butter, egg yolks, shrimp, cheese, and fat just oozing down and somehow lining our ‘pipes’ directly with their sticky cholesterol. And well…if we eat too many of them we’ll die of a heart attack or stroke.
Well…let’s BUST a few myths shall we!!
Heart Disease Is NOT Caused By ‘BAD’ Cholesterol
Trust me I have a BIG concern about heart disease myself because it is hereditary in my family.
My grandmother had angina from very young and died at just 59, my grandfather died of a massive heart attack at 62, that’s pretty young too. And the line of heart disease goes back beyond that too, at least on my mothers side. So heart disease is a concern for me, I just wanted to say that because I am not sharing this info as my ‘opinion’ but as pure cold hard fact!
Like you, I also believed for many years that fats and foods caused ‘bad’ cholesterol that was going to clog my arteries. It wasn’t until I did my Masters that I really learned that heart disease was initiated by inflammation of the cells in the artery wall (the epithelial cells). It is this inflammation that leads to the development of plaques and cholesterol build up!
Cholesterol In Foods We Eat Does NOT Equal High Cholesterol
Another very important thing I learned in my nutrition education is that the body produces cholesterol internally. That’s right, your body naturally produces it’s own cholesterol. When we eat foods that contain cholesterol, this does not equate to high cholesterol in your body or ‘bad’ cholesterol in your body.
In fact, if you know anything about physiology and metabolism (and perhaps you don’t and that’s okay), you would understand that eating things high in fructose makes the body produce more cholesterol that eating foods high in cholesterol!
Fructose is in sugar (which is half sucrose, half fructose) and how many things do we eat with sugar in them these days? A LOT!
So what I am saying here is your body will make more ‘bad’ cholesterol from sugar than it will ever make from egg yolks!
Cholesterol has been wrongly victimized because it is absolutely essential for our survival. It actually performs many important functions in the body, like hormone production. Yes there are different types of cholesterol, LDL, HDL, VLDL and so forth, but even the widespread understanding of cholesterol is grossly misunderstood. We won’t go into that now but I will cover this in more detail soon.
High Cholesterol Is Caused By…
The most common causes of increased LDL include:
- insulin/leptin resistance
- poor thyroid function
- leaky gut
Now 3 of the things listed above do come as a result of bad diet and lifestyle and in every instance the ’cause’ is due to too much processed and packaged foods and junk that are full of sugar, refined carbohydrates, and bad quality oils.
So again, high cholesterol is not a result of eating egg yolks, good quality fats from meats, coconut oil and avocado, or from butter!
Don’t Believe Me? Believe THIS!!
HOT OFF THE PRESS!!
The American Dietary Guidelines Committee has finally admitted that they have made one of the BIGGEST health blunders in history!
Here is their preliminary statement about cholesterol:
Cholesterol. Previously, the Dietary Guidelines for Americans recommended that cholesterol intake be limited to no more than 300 mg/day. The 2015 DGAC will not bring forward this recommendation, because available evidence shows no appreciable relationship between consumption of dietary cholesterol and serum cholesterol… Cholesterol is not a nutrient of concern for overconsumption.”
The well respected Times Magazine wrote about it here, and the World Nutrition Journal is due to publish their thoughts (I got a preliminary preview of the document and will keep you up to date 😉 ).
The result of this most recent turn around comes after the American Heart Association and the Australian Heart Foundation have been put on the ‘hot seat’ in various public campaigns to re-evlauate the dietary guidelines that they promote. To which they have always denied that there was any need to do so.
Well people…the time has come for one of the myths to get BUSTED!!
Once this passes the preliminary stage, we might finally see some more long term truths and myths about diet unfold.
Here at Diabetes Meal Plans, we do our best to stay right on top of the latest research and do our best to provide you with what REALLY works!
We’re not aligned with any food companies and are not paid to promote some outdated, outhashed information.
So as it stands, this is to inform you that there are NO foods high in ‘bad’ cholesterol that you need to avoid! It’s one BIG FAT MYTH!
Eat your egg yolks, enjoy your butter and coconut oil, and don’t be scared to eat meat. It’s the processed and packaged foods that will kill you, not real foods that come from nature 🙂
P.S. Share this ‘up to date’ information around