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Tag Archives: saturated fats

Diet alone helps lower bad cholesterol: study

NEW YORK (Reuters Health) – A diet based around plants, nuts and high-fiber grains lowered “bad” cholesterol more than a low-saturated-fat diet that was also vegetarian, researchers reported on Tuesday.

And the drop in low-density lipoprotein, or LDL cholesterol, was big enough that dietary changes could be an alternative to statin medications for many people, they said.

“There’s no question that statins have made a major difference in terms of cardiovascular disease control,” said study author Dr. David Jenkins, from the University of Toronto. But at least for now, he added, “we can only get so far with statins.”

One in four adults age 45 and older in the U.S. takes the cholesterol-lowering drugs.

Jenkins and his colleagues wanted to see how big an effect a diet based on the pillars of lower cholesterol could have on LDL numbers without statins.

They randomly split 351 Canadians with high cholesterol into three groups. One group got nutrition counseling promoting a low-saturated-fat diet for six months.

In the other two groups, dietitians helped participants fit more cholesterol-lowering foods, including soy milk, tofu, nuts, oats, peas and beans, into a healthy diet — meeting with some of them twice during the study, and with others seven times. All the diets were vegetarian.

After six months, people on the low-saturated-fat diet saw a drop in LDL cholesterol of 8 milligrams per deciliter (mg/dL), on average, according to findings in the Journal of the American Medical Association.

That compared to 24 mg/dL and 26 mg/dL decreases in participants on the cholesterol-lowering diets. (The average starting LDL was about 170 mg/dL. A number 160 mg/dL and above is considered high.)

That drop is “really a lot,” said Dr. Yunsheng Ma, a nutrition and heart disease researcher from the University of Massachusetts Medical School in Worcester, who was not involved in the new study.

Volunteers in the cholesterol-lowering group were encouraged to consume about a gram of plant sterols in an enriched margarine per 1,000 calories of food they ate, as well as about 10 grams of fiber in the form of oats, barley and psyllium, 22.5 grams of soy protein and 22.5 grams of nuts, per 1,000 calories.

“A lot of people rely on the medication, but diet is really powerful actually,” he told Reuters Health. “People ignore that. They think if they’re on statins, they can do anything they want, they can eat the high-fat foods because the statins are going to take care of that.”

One in five of the participants dropped out before the full six months, and even those that didn’t had a hard time sticking closely to the diet plans — but many still saw cholesterol benefits.

The researchers had everyone in the study who was taking statins go off the medication for the diet intervention. Jenkins said the question of how diet and statins could lower LDL in tandem is for future research.

But for those who like the idea of changing their diet instead of going on medications, this is a reasonable option, he said. Others who aren’t interested in adjusting their eating habits might be better suited to sticking with statins, Jenkins added.

“If you want to sit on the couch with the six pack and the wings and watch other people exercise and you’re quite determined not to do anything other than that, then we’ve got a medication for you,” he said.

Jenkins said that doctors should encourage their patients with high cholesterol to try diet changes, if they’re interested. A couple of visits to a nutritionist might be enough for motivated patients to make the switch to a plant-based, higher-fiber diet, he added.

“The diet only is enough for the majority of the people that have a not-so-good lifestyle,” Sabate, who was not involved in the new research, told Reuters Health. “By changing the diet and their lifestyle they can establish good control of their cholesterol.”

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Eating Eggs Has No Effect on Cholesterol Levels

Eggs do not increase cholesterol
Eating eggs does not significantly raise the body’s cholesterol levels, according to a new study conducted by researchers from the University of Surrey and published in the Nutrition Bulletin of the British Heart Foundation.

The researchers reviewed the results of several different studies on eggs and nutrition, concluding that eggs did not contribute significantly to the body’s cholesterol levels. Although eggs are in fact a high-cholesterol food, the researchers note that only one-third of the body’s cholesterol comes from dietary sources; the rest is produced by the body from saturated fats. As a consequence, saturated fat intake plays a far more significant role.

Eggs Do Not Increase Cholesterol“The ingrained misconception linking egg consumption to high blood cholesterol and heart disease must be corrected,” researcher Bruce Griffin said. “The amount of saturated fat in our diet exerts an effect on blood cholesterol that is several times greater than the relatively small amounts of dietary cholesterol.”

The researchers note that other factors, such as obesity, a sedentary lifestyle or smoking also have greater effects on cholesterol levels or the risk of cardiovascular disease than egg consumption does.

“The  public does not need to be limiting the number of eggs they eat,” Griffin said. “Indeed, they can be encouraged to include them in a healthy diet, as they are one of nature’s most nutritionally dense foods.”

Up until 2007, the British Heart Foundation (BHF) recommended that people limit their intake of eggs to three per week, as a way of reducing the risk of heart disease. That advice is now considered outdated.

“We recommend that eggs can be eaten as part of a balanced diet,” said Victoria Taylor of the BHF. “There is cholesterol present in eggs, but this does not usually make a great contribution to your level of blood cholesterol. If you need to reduce your cholesterol level, it is more important that you cut down on the amount of saturated fat in your diet from foods like fatty meat, full fat dairy products, and cakes, biscuits and pastries.”

Once you get past the assumption that eggs are terrible for you, there isEggs and Cholesterol room to discover the myriad of health benefits that come with eating them regularly. Eggs are jam-packed with vitamins and minerals in forms that can be easily absorbed. These include vitamins A, B, C, D, E and K in addition to iron, zinc, lecithin and choline. All of these help contribute to brain function, a healthy metabolism and disease prevention.

Eggs are also a great source of protein, especially for those who don’t consume very much meat. It can be difficult to obtain all of the essential amino acids – the ones our bodies can’t produce – if you eat a diet mostly based in grains. An egg contains each of the nine essential amino acids, making it a top source for these nutrients.

Of course, all eggs are not created equal. Commercial eggs are a nutritionally poor substitute for organic, free-range eggs. Chickens that are allowed to roam free provide eggs with a higher protein and vitamin content, while organic practices mean harmful pesticides and chemicals won’t find their way into your breakfast. You can also look for eggs that contain higher levels of essential omega-3 fatty acids. These come from chickens that have been fed a special diet high in those healthy omega-3s.

If you’ve been afraid to commit nutritional sacrilege by enjoying a tasty omelet in the morning or a boiled egg for an afternoon snack, set your fears aside and relish in the wholesome goodness of one of mother nature’s best gifts.

NOTE – It is highly recommended to purchase and consume free ranged eggs with zero hormones and chemicals.

To see our recipe pages that include delicious eggs go to this link http://www.celestialhealing.net/food4.htm