Monday, February 23, 2015

U.S Advisers Rethink Cholesterol Risk From Foods

Decades-old advice to Americans against eating foods high in cholesterol likely will not appear in the next update of the nation’s Dietary Guidelines, according to published reports. Art via clipartist

The U.S. Department of Agriculture panel assigned the task of revamping the guidelines every five years has indicated that it will bow to new research that has undermined the role that dietary cholesterol plays in a person’s heart heath, the Washington Post reported Tuesday.

The Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee plans to no longer warn people to avoid eggs, shellfish and other cholesterol-laden foods, the newspaper reported.

“It’s the right decision,” Dr. Steven Nissen, chairman of cardiovascular medicine at the Cleveland Clinic told USA Today. For years, “we got the dietary guidelines wrong. They’ve been wrong for decades.”

“I have long recommended to my clients that the type of fat they eat is a much bigger issue to their blood cholesterol level that the amount of cholesterol they consume,” said registered dietitian Connie Diekman, director of university nutrition at Washington University in St. Louis.

That means that, while a person might be able to eat more eggs, shrimp and lobster under the new guidelines, they would still need to limit foods heavy in saturated fat like prime rib, bacon, cheese and butter, she said.

The federal panel discussed its cholesterol decision in December, the Post reported. The group’s final report is due within weeks.

High levels of “bad” LDL cholesterol in a person’s blood have long been linked to the formation of arterial plaque that can impede the flow of blood and contribute to heart attacks or strokes, according to the American Heart Association (AHA).

But many nutritionists and heart doctors now believe that for a healthy adult, cholesterol consumed at mealtimes does not significantly affect blood cholesterol and, thus, the risk of heart disease.

Instead, they have focused on the body’s natural ability to produce cholesterol. This type of cholesterol is used for a wide variety of purposes – to create hormones, to produce bile acids, to make vitamin D and to maintain healthy cell membranes.

My Take:
Finally, the pendulum is starting to turn – this information has been common knowledge in the field of nutrition for over 30 years. We did not need new research to reach these conclusions, the old research demonstrated this quite clearly.

Unfortunately, we have two generations of Americans that have been brainwashed into thinking that fat is bad. Our entire food industry is build around “low fat”. Just look at the rates of obesity that skyrocketed during our low fat decades and it is easy to see that low fat doesn’t work.

Reread the last sentence from this article – “This type of cholesterol is used for a wide variety of purposes – to create hormones, to produce bile acids, to make vitamin D and to maintain healthy cell membranes.” These are the health issues I see everyday in my office – hormonal imbalances, immune system issues from lack of vitamin D, gallbladder inflammation, and premature aging from a lack of healthy cell membranes.

The Bottom Line:
Cholesterol is an essential component of a healthy diet. Fat is good, not bad. Use real butter, not margarine. Have a couple of eggs for breakfast, just limit or eliminate the toast.

Source: February 10. 2015 National Institutes of Health

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