As in popular belief we have severely debunked eating foods that might contain cholesterol in them, foods like eggs, meat and bacon are among the victims of this popular notion. People literally stopped eating eggs and whole fat dairy. But have the number of heart diseases declined, unfortunately no, still one in every four deaths in the US are due to cardiovascular diseases. Each year more than 700,000 Americans get a heart attack, still the leading cause of death for both men and women. So, where are we going wrong? Before we discuss the type of bad cholesterol, let’s note that 75% of cholesterol is produced in our bodies by the liver.
The body regulates the amount of cholesterol in the blood, if we eat a diet rich in cholesterol, the body starts making less cholesterol inside. Cholesterol and saturated fats might not be the evils we have always believed they are. In plain words, eating cholesterol isn’t going to give you a heart attack, in several long-term studies no significant link was found between eating saturated fat and increasing the risk for heart disease. It is important to note that risk for heart disease lies more in hereditary and sedentary lifestyle than quitting egg yolks. Some people are genetically predisposed to having risk factors for heart disease.
Latest research shows that saturated fat and cholesterol from natural sources is actually good for your body. Therefore, the cholesterol in egg yolks is not necessarily bad for you, nor are saturated fats in nuts, coconut oil and whole cheese. It is the fat in processed and artificial foods that should raise caution. Having too much vegetable oil in our diets is disrupting the omega-6 fatty acids to omega-3 fatty acids ratio, the ratio should be around 5:1 and it is now at 20:1. Too many omega-6 fatty acids and too little omega-3 create inflammation in the body. Cholesterol is important for us, it is found in every cell of our body, it is a precursor of many hormones and vitamin D.
HDL known as the good cholesterol actually protects you from heart disease, fatty fish, grass fed meat, organic dairy, and nuts are all healthy sources of cholesterol and fat. Current research doesn’t show a definite link between dietary cholesterol and risk of heart disease, interestingly cholesterol from food is not readily absorbed in our body. Cholesterol is a type of fat, but is much more complex than saturated fats. However, patients with heart disease should always seek professional advice on their diet.