One of the most persistent myths of this century is Cholesterol and its preeminent role in Coronary Disease. It is obvious that high Cholesterol has a very pernicious effect on our health and is linked directly to Cancer, Diabetes and Coronary Disease, just to name a few. The entire documentation and proof is provided on this site in ” The China Study”.
Most Alternative Medicine practitioners are not convinced that Cholesterol alone is the big and only cause of Coronary Heart Disease. You have other factors to consider that are more predictable and far more detrimental than cholesterol.
Let’s review together some disturbing research that checks and shakes the status quo:
Samuel Black and The French Paradox
This phenomenon was first noted by Irish physician Samuel Black in 1819 who believed that people in France suffer relatively low incidence of coronary heart disease despite having a diet relatively rich in saturated fats. This Myth was coined more than a century ago but still persisted, pushed and kept alive by the winery industry. The reality is far from this, in fact French die less than Americans from Coronary Disease but according to data from the world’s largest study of heart disease, conducted by the World Health Organization (WHO) during the past decade in 21 countries, French heart disease statistics are not that bubbling.
The French do drink one-and-a-half times more per capita than Americans but their death rate from liver cirrhosis is more than one-and-a-half times greater than that in the United States. So there’s not much benefit from wine. The French still die less than Americans from Coronary Heart Disease but as much as their neighbors from South Germany who drink beer and eat even more animal fat.
Confusing? You bet but the picture will look clearer soon.
The Eskimo Paradox and Heart Disease
Greenland Eskimos have a low mortality rate from CHD despite a high intake of fat (which is about 40% of their total caloric intake) in their diet.
Bjerregaard P, Mulvad G, Pedersen HS. Cardiovascular risk factors in Inuit of Greenland. Int J Epidemiol 1997; 26:1182–90
But most of their Cholesterol comes from the consumption of fish with a high intake of omega-3 fatty acid.Dyerberg J. The epidemiology of omega 3 fatty acids. World Rev Nutr Diet 1994; 76:133–6. David Klein publisher Living Nutrition Magazine
The African Masai Tribe Paradox
The Masai of Kenya drink half a gallon of whole milk each day. Their parties are sheer orgies of meat; on such occasions four to ten pounds of meat [eaten] per person is not unusual. They probably are not the healthiest tribe of the planet but strangely they don’t die of Coronary Heart Disease. Also their cholesterol level is well below the values of most Americans.Professor George Mann of Vanderbilt University in Nashville,TN
Could It Be Just A Correlation Without A Cause?
For example in a striking graph from one of the papers of John Yudkin, M.D., Ravnskov shows that the number of deaths from Coronary Heart Disease in England and Wales between 1910 and 1956 is closely follows the number of new radio and television sets purchased each year.
Now during the same period of time, the consumption of fat raised by a mere 10% leading to a 600% augmentation of CHD.
Following the implacable and twisted logic of our mad science, we could say that Televisions and Radio are a clear determinant factor and culprit in Coronary Heart Disease.
Some Thoughts before we start
The French Paradox could be explained by the fact that the French also consume a lot of fish and vegetable raising their good cholesterol level, they also have a higher level of vitamin E, an important factor and more significant than Cholesterol for the prediction and prevention of heart attack and stroke.(1) K. F. Gey and P. Puska Plasma vitamins E and A inversely correlated to mortality from ischemic heart disease in cross-cultural epidemiologyVitamin Research Department, F. Hoffmann-La Roche & Co., Ltd., Basel, Switzerland. (2) Vitamin E and coronary heart disease: the European paradox Bellizzi MC, Franklin MF, Duthie GG, James WP. Rowett Research Institute, Bucksburn, Aberdeen, UK.
Regarding the Masai , this can be explained by a genetic adaptation to their specific Nutritional Environment. Just like people in the south Mediterranean area were able to build a resistance to alcohol by being introduced to this product long ago; on the other hand, Celtics, American Indians and many tribes around the world are still “working“ on building their resistance to the toxics effects of alcohol.The Eskimos it was found recently were protected by theirs high intake of Omega-3.
No relation Between Cholesterol & Atherosclerosis
We were told over and over again that Cholesterol was responsible for the promotion of Atherosclerosis, the hardening of veins. Logically, the higher the level of cholesterol, the higher should be the level of atherosclerosis. It would be very easy to prove this theory by autopsy because the level of cholesterol stays about the same level for about 16 hours after death.
This was done by the pathologist Dr. Kurt Landé and the biochemist Dr. Warren Sperry at the Department of Forensic Medicine of New York University in 1936. To their dismay, they found no relation whatsoever between Atherosclerosis and level of Cholesterol. Confusing? You bet!Landé KE, Sperry WM. Human atherosclerosis in relation to the cholesterol content of the blood serum. Archives of Pathology 1936;22:301-312
Despite many critics of the first study mentioned above Dr. J. C. Paterson from London, Canada and his team tried to solve once and for all this enigma by following 800 elderly war veterans for years. Monitoring their blood level of Cholesterol year after year, they kept records for each patient till their death. Dr Paterson and his team did not find any relation between Cholesterol and the degree of Atherosclerosis.
Paterson JC, Armstrong R, Armstrong EC.
Serum lipid levels and the severity of coronary and cerebral atherosclerosis in adequately nourished men, 60 to 69 years of age. Circulation 1963;27:229-236
Verifications: More Studies
This research was also conducted in India (1) and then repeated in Poland (2) , Guatemala (3) , and in the USA (4)(1). Mathur KS, and others. Serum cholesterol and atherosclerosis in man. Circulation 1961;23:847-852. (2). Marek Z, Jaegermann K, Ciba T. Atherosclerosis and levels of serum cholesterol in postmortem investigations. American Heart Journal 1962;63: 768-774. (3). Méndez J, Tejada C. Relationship between serum lipids and aortic atherosclerotic lesions in sudden accidental deaths in Guatemala City. American Journal of Clinical Nutrition 1967;20:1113-1117. (4). Cabin HS, Roberts WC. Relation of serum total cholesterol and triglyceride levels to the amount and extent of coronary arterial narrowing by atherosclerotic plaque in coronary heart disease. American Journal of Medicine 1982;73:227-234.
The Infamous Framingham Study
Only one study was ever able to show a correlation between cholesterol and Atherosclerosis. The researchers strangely enough chose to examine only 281 of 914 dead individuals, this was a very picky choice to start with, and then they choose to investigate only 141 of the previous 281.
Despise the “accuracy of their selection”, the correlation between cholesterol and atherosclerosis was a mere 0.36%. This was the famous Framingham study cited still today by the proponents of the relation Cholesterol and Atherosclerosis. Even though the results were trivial at best, and even though there is far more proof negating this correlation, it’s the reason we associate the two today. This is the way that History is written, medical history anyway. The real culprit of CHD is hidden somewhere else as you will now discover.
Facts On Fats
Not all fats are similar and a lot of studies were inconsistent in results. They hey failed to isolate the culprit because of a lack of adequate dietary assessment. All the fats were put under the same umbrella and the Cholesterol level was kept as the major indicator for risk assessment for Coronary Heart Disease (CHD).
It was later found that we had good and bad cholesterol and more recently it was found that the elevation of LDL (low-density lipoprotein, the bad cholesterol) was associated with an increased risk of CHD. In contrast, increase of the good cholesterol, HDL, was linked to a low risk of CHD.
Managing Uncertainties: More Indicators
Total Cholesterol Level Indicator:
The actual recommendation is to keep a total cholesterol level at less than 200 mg /dL but as you saw in my post on the China Study this level is too high and still linked to all of our diseases of affluence. The real goal is below 150 mg/dL to be bulletproof against heart attack and to reverse coronary disease.
Total Cholesterol To HDL Ratio Indicator:
The total cholesterol to HDL ratio is a very good indicator: The total cholesterol to HDL ratio should not be higher than 4 times.
Total LDL To HDL Ratio Indicator:
The total ratio of your bad cholesterol to your good cholesterol should not be higher than 2.5 times.
Checking Out Lipoprotein (a) or Lp (a)
LDL, the bad cholesterol has an even more dangerous form: Lipoprotein (a). Several studies have shown that an elevated plasma level of Lipoprotein (a) is an independent risk factor for the development of premature CHD. (1)(2)(3)(1) Elevated plasma lipoprotein(a) and coronary heart disease in men aged 55 years and younger. A prospective study JAMA (2)Lipoprotein(a). A genetic risk factor for premature coronary heart disease. A. M. Scanu Department of Medicine, University of Chicago, IL 60637 (3) Lipoprotein-Associated Phospholipase A2, High-Sensitivity C-Reactive Protein, and Risk for Incident Coronary Heart Disease in Middle-Aged Men and Women in the Atherosclerosis Risk in Communities (ARIC) Study. (Circulation. 2004;109:837-842.)
Comparing Conventional Biomarkers
Ridker PM, Stampfer MJ, Rifai N.Brigham and Women’s Hospital, 900 Commonwealth Ave E, Boston, MA 02215,USA.
From 11 lipid and nonlipid biomarkers tested for predictions of risk factors for atherosclerosis, cholesterol-HDL-C ratio and CRP (C-reactive protein test) were the strongest independent predictors of development of peripheral arterial disease.
The Rules of War in Reducing Cardiac Risks
The rules of War are for you to use the entire range of indicators provided above and on the next page to fight your battle against CHD. A pilot flying at night with a plane loaded with explosives is paying attention to his high-tech flight instruments aligned on his dashboard. They could be lifesaving and will be in your case. You can fight back by raising HDL cholesterol levels and lowering levels of triglycerides and/or LDL cholesterol levels.
You need to pay attention to the state of your health. In Alternative Medicine you have other indicators that are up to 20 times more accurate and predictable than the ones used by conventional medicine because we don’t believe that cholesterol is responsible for heart diseases.
Your Worst Enemy : Oxidation
The bad cholesterol LDL starts to be very harmful only after it had been oxidized. Once oxidized, it starts to build plaque formations on the arterial walls. The cholesterol oxides appear to be transported in the blood primarily by very low density lipoproteins (VLDL) and low density lipoproteins (LDL). (1) (2) (3) (4)
Most Common Causes of oxidation
The most common way that oxidized cholesterol (Oxysterols) enters our body is through processed food. Oxidized cholesterol can be found especially in powdered milk and eggs used in fast food and food industries. French fries and potato chips play a big part in this problem.
“We concluded that the human subjects studied had the capacity to absorb Cholesterol Oxidation Products from food sources.”Plasma Cholesterol Oxidation Products (Oxysterols) in Human Subjects Fed a Meal Rich in Oxysterols
In an experiment on rabbits, a diet rich in oxidized cholesterol resulted in a 100% increase in fatty streak lesions in the aorta. Western diets contain high concentrations of oxidized cholesterol products and our results suggest that these foods may be a risk factor for atherosclerosis.
Oxidized Cholesterol in the diet accelerates the development of Aortic Atherosclerosis in Cholesterol-Fed rabbits. Another way to internally produce an increase of oxidation of our cholesterol is through pollutants and pesticides like chlorine, fluoride, DTT and other pesticides.
Others Sources of Oxidation
Stress: Electric And Magnetic
Electromagnetic stress, overexposure to electromagnetic fields, overexposure to TV, computer, radio and other electrical devices. Emotional stress is also known to increase level of Oxysterols.
Worries and Stress
Just like it’s possible to have a personality type that is prone to breast cancer, you can also have a personality type that is prone for Heart Disease. To sum up this type of personality, I will use only one word: WORRIER. Mental stress had been proven to create more free radicals, which cause a greater conversion of Cholesterol into oxidized Cholesterol. (1) (2)
PERSONAL NOTE I INCLUDED ON THIS SITE EVERYTHING FOR YOU (UNDER MIND’S TOOLS) TO HELP YOU TO LEARN HOW TO SLOW DOWN. WE HAVE TO GO BACK TO THE ESSENTIAL TO GET BACK OUR INNER CAPACITY TO ENJOY LIFE ON A DAILY BASIS, FULLY AWARE, LIVING IN THE PRESENT AND LETTING THE FUTURE TAKE CARE OF ITSELF
Processing, Heating, Irradiating & Microwaving effects on the lipids
This could be the subject of an entire book. For now, I will just give you an example: Milk and its relation with 7-Ketocholesterol a dangerous byproduct that comes from the oxidation of Cholesterol, 7-Ketocholesterol is linked to cancer and CHD (coronary heart disease.) Here you see the progression from a raw product to a processed food.
The increase of 7-Ketocholesterol is raised 80 fold.
- Raw cow’s milk: No 7-Ketocholesterol
- Reconstituted milk powder (UHT) 80.97
- Milk Pasteurized at 85 Celsius for 16 sec. 2,613
- Milk pasteurized at 85 Celsius for 16 sec and stored for 3 days. 5,520
- Milk pasteurized at 95 Celsius for 5 min. 11,733
- Milk pasteurized at 95 Celsius for 15 min. 16,328
- Milk boiled in a microwave oven at (80% power) for 5min. 50,029
The conclusion to be taken from these numbers is that the more you cook a food, the more the 7-Ketocholesterol goes up. If you mircrowave something, these levels go through the roof!
The Homocysteine Connection
“Chance favors only the Prepared Mind”
Who is Dr. McCully?
Kilmer S. McCully is a man who had a very well prepared mind. He is a researcher who in 1969 published an interesting discovery on Homocysteine as a possible cause of Heart Disease. This cost him his job at Harvard University. A researcher should never dare to publish a paper in The American Journal of Pathology proclaiming that the real culprit of heart disease could be something that you can reverse through just Nutrition and without expensive patentable drugs or surgery. This is bad politics when you are in a university with a $29.2 billion capital wisely invested and where most of the research is sponsored by “private industries “for the sake of private industries.
A Side Note:
Today, 07/07/2007, just out of curiosity, I went to do a search on the actual members of The Board of Trustees of Harvard Clinical Research Institute. Picking up the first name on the list just for a quick check, the name is Chris Colecchi.
I later found that Chris Colecchi, who is Vice President of Partners Healthcare, the giant of the Boston medical world, is studying a plan with other big academic hospitals elsewhere to sell aggregated patient data to the government, pharmaceutical and biotech companies, insurers, and publishers”. (1)
”As the adage goes, ‘Information is power, and power is money,’ notes a confidential Partners’ document outlining the ”data commercialization project.” Partners, which runs Massachusetts General Hospital and Brigham & Women’s Hospital will compete with companies such as Subimo, Ingenix, and HealthGrades that provide data for insurance companies and others.(1) Your data for sale? By Steve Bailey, Globe Columnist | March 24, 2006
As you can see in Harvard some try to help patients, while the others try to sell their information. Unfortunately, the second type is actually and usually in positions of power. If you thought for an instant that Medical Care was not just a business, welcome aboard.
Back to Dr. McCully’s Discovery, Homocysteine
Homocysteine is an amino acid, and the byproduct of animal protein consumption. It is found in meat and dairies. This amino acid can damage blood vessels in several ways. It injures the cells that line arteries and stimulates the growth of smooth muscle cells. Homocysteine can also disrupt normal blood clotting mechanisms, increasing the risk of clots that can bring on a heart attack or stroke. This explains why T. Collin Campbell, author of the China Study, found and proved a direct relation with consumption of animal protein and Coronary Heart Disease.
Elevated levels of Homocysteine also appear to increase the risk of Alzheimer’s disease and dementia.
When it comes to CHD, Homocysteine is more harmful than Cholesterol. Therefore, testing for the level of Homocysteine is a more powerful indicator than testing for Cholesterol.
(1) The presence of homocysteinemia and hypercholesterolemia in angiographically defined coronary heart disease.
Ubbink JB; Vermaak WJ; Bennett JM; Becker PJ; van Staden DA; Bissbort S. Klin Wochenschr (Germany), Aug 16 1991, 69(12) p527-34
(2) Plasma Homocysteine as a Risk Factor for Vascular Disease
The European Concerted Action Project Graham, Ian M.,et al.
The Journal of the American Medical Association, June 11, 1997, Volume 277, Number 22, pages 1775-1781
Most mainstream Doctors work on the circulatory system as if they were plumbers, unplugging clots, and changing parts. But the problem is obviously much more complicated than that. However, many still reject the Homocysteine connection, but this theory has accumulated strong clinical support since 1969. Why is this idea not more mainstream although the proof is substantial? First of all, because the cure is free, you just stop eating animal protein. So the pharmaceutical companies and the health-care industry would be losing a lot of money. And second, is because many food industries would also be losing money. Sadly, we live in a world where money talks, not truth.
Plasma Homocysteine Test
Take the test called: Plasma Total Homocysteine. Insist on getting this test done because you can have reasonable Cholesterol and a still have a high level of Homocysteine. In fact, a German study (1991) on 163 males with chest pains concluded that the arterial narrowing was due more to blood levels of Homocysteine than cholesterol. You will soon learn how to lower your level of Homocysteine with cheap supplements and healthy Nutrition.
Here is a small review of existing research and the conclusions they found:
“A homocysteine-lowering treatment that is cheap and well tolerated should be considered as a rationale approach in patients at high risk for stroke and high homocysteine concentrations.”
“The medical establishment woke up to the dangers of Homocysteine when The New England Journal of Medicine (Apr 9, 1998) and The Journal of the Medical Association (Dec 18, 1996) published articles suggesting that vitamin supplements be used to lower Homocysteine levels. This same message was published by The Life Extension Foundation 18 years earlier
Multivitamin and supplements
Thinking that taking some multivitamin and supplements will safeguard you from the risk of CHD is a dangerous assumption: First you have to know your level of Homocysteine and then act upon your results with adequate quantities of supplements and a lifestyle change.
There is no such thing as a safe level of Homocysteine but epidemiological data reveals that Homocysteine levels above 6.3, tremendously raise your risks. Even with a high level of supplement intake, you have no guarantee of decreasing your risks completely.
The best and unique solution rests in reducing meat and dairy consumption to a bare minimum, keep them as a condiments if you want. An even better solution would be to eliminate animal protein completely from your diet.
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