The Truth about Cholesterol and Fat

The Truth about Cholesterol and Fat

Cholesterol and fat are the most misunderstood topics in the field of nutrition. Of course, we have been told many times that we need to keep our saturated fat intake under 10% of our total calories or we are at risk of developing a major heart condition. This has lead to the demonization of saturated fat because of the cholesterol content in products such as red meat, eggs and cheese.  A famous study conducted back in 1970 by Ancel Keys concluded that countries that consume a high amount of Saturated fat, at the time, died from heart disease. You can see a major flaw with this study as other factors were not considered. Health organizations recommended, and still recommend, we reduce our saturated fat intake. However, obesity is higher that it has ever been in the United States. This is with a massive reduction in saturated fat intake. 



People have a general knowledge of cholesterol and fat. They are told that HDL is “good cholesterol” and LDL is “Bad cholesterol” Yes there is truth to that but it is even more complicated than that simple conclusion. LDL is broken upon into two different particles. There are large LDL particles and small, dense LDL particles. The large particles, even though they have more cholesterol, are not correlated with cardiovascular disease. A diet that is high in trans fat and carbohydrates is what can lead to obesity and cardiovascular disease. The problem is many people intake them together and too frequently. (think burger and French fries)

Avoid Sugar

Many meta-analysis studies show a correlation between insulin resistance and cardiovascular disease. Insulin resistance occurs when an individual consumes too much carbohydrates over a long period of time. The body will easily convert these carbs into fat. The main culprit of fat gain with consuming carbohydrates is sugar. Consuming too much sugar leads to increased amount of inflammation in the body which is the main dietary reason for obesity. 

My recommendation is to not be scared of saturated fat. However. Saturated fat should be only be consumed from clean sources such as grass-fed meat and pasture-raised eggs. Also incorporate fatty fish and foods rich in omega 3’s in your diet.  



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