Cholesterol Essential for
Great Health, and is
Not the Mythical Boogeyman

Featured

The Hypothesis
Let us say that an inspector witnessed many large fires and noticed that at every fire, firemen were present, and therefore concluded that just on the weight of their presence, firemen were the cause of fires. This specious logic seems to be the thinking of the mainstream medical community when it arrives at the conclusion that the mere presence of cholesterol in arteries as plaque is the cause of heart disease, stroke and arteriolosclerosis—this has been the prevailing wisdom.
WWWart> amerucan heart assoc. logoThe American Heart Association’s website states, “High cholesterol is one of the major controllable risk factors for coronary heart disease, heart attack and stroke.” And, “High blood cholesterol: As blood cholesterol rises, so does risk of coronary heart disease.” This is called the lipid hypothesis, where the only accepted therapy for heart disease was prescribing medications to lower cholesterol and severely restrict the ingestion of saturated fat, and any deviation from this protocol for several decades now, has been considered heresy.
WWW
Doubts Abound
Bacon and eggsApparently humans have consumed large amounts of saturated fats for centuries in the form of meat, eggs and full-fat diary without the incidence of heart disease…up until about the 1900′s. As we reduced these foods in our diets replacing them with loads of sugar, vegetable oils and processed foods, heart disease made its debut with a vengeance and became the number one killer in America.
WWWLarge companies are not nefarious entities, yet it would be prudent to be cognizant of the fact that pharmaceutical and processed-food companies bring in mega-dollars as long as this hypothesis is alive and kicking; reminding me of what Sydney J. Harris wrote “There is no way of proving your point to someone whose income or position depends upon believing the contrary.”
WWWHere are some interesting facts:

  • Cholesterol levels in Briton are the 15th lowest among 45 countries in Europe, yet they still have one of the highest rates of heart attacks.
  • 75% of heart attack victims have normal cholesterol
  • Countries with higher than average cholesterol levels than America like the Swiss, French and Spanish have less heart disease.

Role of Cholesterol
I was quite surprised to learn recently that cholesterol is crucial to glowing health. Wow, who would ever think that, with the way we’ve been conditioned for decades to think otherwise.
WWWFirst of all, cholesterol is an essential component in our cell membranes, and acts as an anti-oxidant where every cell in our body has the ability to manufacture it, manufacturing more or less of it based on how much of it we consume. These are some of the functions of cholesterol contributing to health:

  • Enzymes convert it into vitamin D, bile salts for digesting and absorbing fats.
  • Enzymes convert it into steroidal hormones like testosterone, estrogen and progesterone.
  • One quarter of all cholesterol in the body is in the brain essential for synaptic health.
  • The membranes surrounding cells and its structure are mostly made of cholesterol helping to maintain cell integrity and communication.
  • One-fifth of the myelin sheath coating every nerve cell and fiber is made of cholesterol.
  • It contributes to your immune system able to inactivate more than 90% of the worst and most toxic bacterial  products.

New Hypothesis
human heartCholesterol performs thousands of bodily functions, a crucial component for life, and many in the medical community have become aware it has suffered a bad rap as the cause of heart disease and stroke. A few years ago it was discovered that the real cause of these diseases is something called inflammation in the artery wall. What causes arterial inflammation? It is your body’s natural defense to a foreign invader such as a bacteria, toxin or virus, and, that cholesterol being the good-guy, comes to the rescue as the fireman to put out the fire by forming a scab known as plaque over the area of inflammation.
WWWDr. Malcom Kendrick, author of The Great Cholesterol Scam, says, “Essentially cholesterol is there to help repair damage.” Cholesterol is present, but it’s not the perpetrator. Dr. Kendrick also saw that the MONICA study ongoing now for forty-years, shows no association with high cholesterol and heart disease.
WWW
Dr. Uffe Ravnskov, author of The Cholesterol Myths, goes through study after study destroying the myth that high cholesterol levels are the cause of heart disease. And, a Canadian study followed 5,000 healthy middle-aged men for twelve-years, and found high cholesterol did not at all contribute to heart disease. Another study from the University Hospital in Toronto looking at cholesterol levels in 120 men that previously had heart attacks, found that just as many men having second heart attacks had low cholesterol levels as those that had high.
WWWThis new prevailing wisdom seems to be saying in no uncertain terms, that if inflammation isn’t present in the arterial walls, cholesterol levels are irrelevant, and that eating saturated fats like steak, eggs and diary bear no threat to health…and the science that says it does is very weak. Now that it’s known cholesterol is not the cause of heart disease, the concern with saturated fat is, as one doctor put it, “even more absurd today.”

Statins
prescription pillsAnnual sales of statins is about
$32 billion. As reported in Forbes magazine, Lipitor’s lifetime sales reached $131 billion. In 2004
the National Cholesterol Education Program expanded guidelines by recommending that people who don’t suffer from heart disease should take statins to prevent heart disease, increasing the number of people taking them from 13 million to 40 million. Eight of the nine people on the panel had financial ties to the drug industry.
WWWWithout side effects from these drugs, it may be justifiable to take the risk, but they’re known to cause muscle damage, sexual dysfunction, and liver and nerve damage among other problems in 10 to 15% of those patients.
WWWIIf no inflammation is present, despite your cholesterol count being high, taking statins has zero benefit—statins should only be used for inflammation reduction, and the test to monitor inflammation is called C-reactive protein.
WWW
The Main Culprits of Inflammation
Dr. Stephen Sinatra is a convert from a pro-statin, anti-cholesterol, paid consultant of statin drug manufacturers to being a cholesterol skeptic, and is the author of, The Great Cholesterol Myth. He says, “I was doing angiograms on people with [cholesterol levels of] 150 who had far advanced heart disease, and the converse, I was doing angiograms on somebody with cholesterol of 280 dr. Oz in interviewand they had no heart disease.” The main culprit he identifies is small dense LDL particles, making your typical total LDL number count meaningless. This is the only lipid you need be concerned about, and there is a test for it known as the particle test. In an interview with Dr. Oz, he explains the process in this three minute video: Dr. Oz and Dr. Sinatra interview.
WWWAnother culprit is sugar, especially high fructose corn syrup. Inflammation is caused when extra sugar molecules attach to some proteins that in turn injure the blood vessel wall, and repeated injury to the wall sets off inflammation. Heart surgeon Dr. Dwight Lundell who has performed over 5,000 open heart surgeries and has looked into at least as many arteries, now is a vehement convert to inflammation being the cause of heart disease. He states,

When you spike your blood sugar level several times a day, every day, it is exactly like taking sandpaper to the inside of your delicate blood vessels.

A third main culprit is omega-6 oils. While they are essential and part of every cell membrane, they must be in balance with omega-3 oils. Dr. Lundell goes on to say,

If the balance shifts by consuming excessive omega-6, the cell membrane produces chemicals called cytokines that directly cause inflammation. Today’s mainstream American diet has produced an extreme imbalance of these two fats. The ratio of imbalance ranges from 15:1 to as high as 30:1 in favor of omega-6. That’s a tremendous amount of cytokines causing inflammation. In today’s food environment, a 3:1 ratio would be optimal and healthy.

french friesSome of the foods containing high amounts of omega-6 are corn oil, canola oil, soy oil, hydrogenated fats, margarine and shortening. One infamous example that holds a ton of this fat is French fries, of which we consume about 28 pounds each year per capita. Foods loaded with sugars and omega-6 oils for long shelf-life have been the mainstay of our diet for six decades, and are slowly poisoning us. The lipid hypothesis led to the no-fat, low-fat recommendations that created the foods now causing an epidemic of inflammation.

Genesis and History of a Myth: A Nation Embraces Junk Science
So, what was the source of this mythology? In two words—Ancel Keyes. Keyes was a pathologist and diet researcher, and in the 1950s looked at the diets of approximately13,000 middle-aged men from seven countries including the United States and Japan, where high fat intake correlated with more heart disease. In fact what he did was cherry-pick those countries which conformed to his hypothesis, and ignored all the others where data was available,
22 countries in all, where no correlation could be found. For instance, France, Italy, Norway, Sweden, Ireland and Switzerland have a high fat diet with a very low incidence of coronary disease, whereas the countries of Moldavia, Georgia, Belarus, Ukraine, Kazakhstan and Azerbaijan have low-fat intakes with a high incidence of heart disease. He used selective facts to support his theory…the worst kind of “science.”
ancel keyesWWWIn 1957 the American Heart Association announced that a correlation between fat consumption and heart disease didn’t stand up to critical examination, yet three years later altered its position despite an absence of evidence because Ancel Keyes and an ally were on the AHA committee. The new report put Keyes on the cover of Time magazine. Then, entrenching the “bad-fat” indictment further into the American culture, then Senator George McGovern led a committee that created a report advising Americans to eat less fat to ward off the risk of heart disease.
WWWEven the surgeon general, C. Everett Koop succumbed to the insidious myth asserting that dietary fat was just as deadly as smoking. The U.S.D.A followed suit in 1980 issuing guidelines against fat consumption. Following that, the National Academy of Sciences reported there wasn’t any valid evidence to proclaim eating less fat was more healthful. The report was promptly and soundly denounced by Capitol Hill. Then the National Institutes of Health jumped on the bandwagon saying there was no doubt that fat was the culprit of heart disease.
WWWAncel Keyes’ bogus research, under the guise of science, led to unhealthful dietary information and no doubt harmed many people, duping not only the people, but also the vast majority of doctors for over fifty-years now, and still persists. It’s a theory that’s big Pharma’s best friend, perpetrating the biggest medical scam ever, with the biggest profits ever, from a class of drugs—statins.
WWW
The modern word for this virus-like spreading of presumptions
is a “meme”—an automatic acceptance of supposed verified data
without question.

WWW
Conclusion
While all of this may seem confusing at first, we need remember only a few things. As Dr. Lundell writes,

Without inflammation being present in the body, there is no way that cholesterol would accumulate in the wall of the blood vessel and cause heart disease and strokes. Without inflammation, cholesterol would move freely throughout the body as nature intended. It is inflammation that causes cholesterol to become trapped.

Inflammation is the bad guy. Stay away from sugar and omega-6. And, the two tests to help us monitor inflammation are C-reactive protein and the particle test. This new hypothesis recommends using statins only as a mechanism to alleviate inflammation, not just to lower cholesterol levels—used specifically for the purpose of interfering with cholesterol levels may be detrimental
to health. Also, statins aren’t the only game in town to mitigate inflammation, diet modification and other life style changes such as exercise are effective as well.

 

© Joe Arrigo

Share

Legions of Valiant Hearts Made
the Ultimate Sacrifice So You May
Have This Right

the word "VOTE"

Raising flag at Iwo JimaNovember’s mid-term election will have an enormous impact in determining our country’s path; whether or not it will work on behalf of all the people. The operative word being “all.” It is your right and it is your obligation to make your voice heard by exercising your power and casting your vote.
WWWMany people today are cynical, angry or indifferent, feeling that they’re not going to bother; burying their head in the sand. That, is a para­mount mistake for four reasons.

  1. Pvt. Anthony DeVitoFirst and foremost, legions of valiant people have died to bestow upon us that right, power and privilege. Among them was my uncle, Anthony DeVito, who made the ultimate sacrifice in WWII. I vividly remember the wails of his wife Minnie, and the sight of my mother fainting as she read the telegram. Her brother was forever gone.
    WW
  2. Leg­islation impacts our life more than we can imagine. We can opt out of par­ticipating, but not from the leg­isla­tion govern­ment and the Supreme Court hand down to us, profoundly affecting our lives and the lives of those people we love.
    WW
  3. By re­fusing to participate because of the belief that the system is hope­lessly rigged, becomes a self-ful­filling prophecy, leading to more control by pow­erful special interests.
    WW
  4. We often take for granted the liberties, op­portunities and won­derful ser­vices that we’re all the ben­efi­ciar­ies of here in our beloved America; lulled into a sort of apathetic stupor, desen­sitizing us to the gratitude we should feel. We are blessed to be here.

statue of libertyThankfully, the Supreme Court has just struck down severe voter suppression laws in Texas, and a federal judge has likewise stopped Wisconsin from instituting the same type of laws. But there are 25 other states like Florida, Indiana and Ohio that have enacted these unpatriotic and malevolent laws to blatantly prevent citizens from exercising their right to vote who have been voting legally for decades, and obstructing new would-be voters to register; perpetrated under the ludicrous guise of abating nonexistent rampant voter fraud. Between 2000 and 2014 there have been 31 cases of fraud out of more than one billion ballots casted, that’s .000000031%. The study was conducted by Yale University Law School and the Brennan Center for Justice.
WWW
If there are nefarious and treasonous forces at work in your state that dishonor and mock our fallen, trying to, or have disenfranchised your right to vote in their insatiable, profane, and mindless quest for power at any cost, you must do whatever it takes to empower and reinstate yourself. This is your duty, to say nothing of being in your and your family’s best interest. The United States ranks last among industrialized nations in voter participation. For mid-term elections it’s less than 38%, and for presidential elections it’s about 55%. That is much too complacent.
WWW
Yes, democracy is messy, not like the neat, simple, oppressive subjugation of a dictatorship. As Winston Churchill said,

Democracy is the worst form of government, except
for all the other forms that been tried from time to time.

We are fast becoming an oligarchy, where in con­cert with a mostly corrupt congress (super-lobbyist Jack Abramoff had major influence with 150 Congressional offices), the most powerful among us will take control of the coun­try, especially now with a Citizens United tilted playing field where a handful of mega-wealthy self-serving moguls are attempting to buy the election. WWWIt’s far from idealis­tic to know, we the people, can change that, because make no mistake, the vote is the great equalizer. There is a correlation between politi­cal apathy and rising dysfunctional govern­ment which works against the best interests of the peo­ple. With freedom comes responsibility.
the word "VOTE"

 Those who are too smart to engage in politics are
punished by being governed by those who are dumber.
~Plato

Share