The Cholesterol Myth and The Great Global Diet Fraud (1 out of 10)

So here I am, in my mid 30’s, strong enough cardio to do 10 K run under 30 min, visible 6 pack abs, and when I told my mom I could eat up to 5 eggs in a day and I pan fry everything with butter, the first thing she worries about is my cholesterol. So OK mom, this one’s for you, why you probably don’t need to worry to much about how much eggs I eat.

First and foremost, this post is a review of the book “The Cholesterol Myths: Exposing the Fallacy that Saturated Fat and Cholesterol Cause Heart Disease” by Dr. Uffe Ravnskov. I have never met the book writer in person and I get no financial gains from promoting this book that is no longer in print. However I believe this is an amazing book that deserve more exposure among wider audience.

So without further ado, let as start with myths that have been circling around our heads since the 1950’s that our moms still accept as fact:

Myth 1: High Animal Fat Consumption Causes Heart Disease.

First, let us check the US death from major cardiovascular disease from the 1900’s to 2011.

US death due to cardiovascular disease

Source: 1900-1970, U.S. Public Health Service, Vital Statistics of the United States, annual, Vol. I and Vol II; 1971-2001, U.S. National Center for Health Statistics, Vital Statistics of the United States, annual; National Vital Statistics Report (NVSR) (formerly Monthly Vital Statistics Report); and unpublished data.

Now Let us compare this with the US population fat consumption

US Fat Consumption

Source: USDA Nutrient Content of the U.S. Food Supply, 1909-2000

Now for all of you that have learned statistics 101 and remember a thing or two about co-relation, you can probably see that the US population death rate due to heart disease is neither proportional, nor inversely proportional with either butter, total or vegetable oil. So if the theory said A causes B, how come the data shows a completely different story?

If you would bother reading the book, it would even expose how African Massai tribesmen that over ate any westerner in red meat and over drank the same westerner on full fat milk has one of the lowest cholesterol level measured based on a study done by Professor [George] Mann [of Vanderbilt University in Nashville, TN, USA] . The book would also mentioned how Honolulu and Puerto Rico citizens that consumed more vegetable oils than animal oil (lard and butter) get more heart attack than those that consume more animal oil in a study conducted by Dr. Tavia Gordon.

This is just the tip of the iceberg on the mountain of data provided in the book that dispels the myth that high animal fat consumption (rich in saturated fat) will cause heart disease. Stay tuned for part 2.


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