2010 Dietary Guidelines Are WRONG (Big Surprise)

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I went out to breakfast with some of my friends and they were all so excited to eat eggs and bacon without getting grief from their wives about the DANGERS OF CHOLESTEROL.

Did my best to tell them that cholesterol is an essential nutrient and has almost no connection with heart disease, but… the USDA says cholesterol is bad, so they wouldn’t listen to anything I said.

Oh well.

The next day I found this great article: 25 Reasons the 2010 Dietary Guidelines are wrong about cholesterol, saturated fat, and carbohydrates (Print this out and give it to your stubborn friends.  Then go enjoy some eggs)

Here are a few of the 25 reasons listed in the post above:

“Cholesterol in food has no affect on cholesterol in blood and we’ve known that all along.” These are the words of Professor Ancel Keys, American Heart Association board member and father of the low fat diet, who, in retirement, recanted the idea that dietary cholesterol raises blood levels. His recant has been greeted with silence.

– All federal Dietary Guidelines since 1980 discuss cholesterol as something to fear. Since cholesterol is found in every cell in our bodies and is a precursor to all adrenal and sex hormones, why wouldn’t the 2010 Dietary Guidelines discuss the essential nature of cholesterol instead?

– Anything that promotes HDL (such as natural dietary fat) puts downward pressure on triglycerides – blood fats made in the liver from excess carbohydrates. Elevated triglycerides are associated with increased risk of heart disease. Saturated fats like stearic acid are heart-healthy in that they lower the ratio of TG to HDL.

– The primary dietary cause of chronic diseases such as diabetes and heart disease is the excess carbohydrates in our diet, especially sugar, high fructose corn syrup, and the easily-digested carbohydrates found in grain and grain products.

– The particularly harmful carbohydrates – sugar and high fructose corn syrup (HFCS) – are not singled out in the proposed 2010 Dietary Guidelines. Dr. Joanne Slavin defended the use of HFCS by saying “a calorie is a calorie is a calorie.” She chairs the Carbohydrate Committee and her testimony (Meeting 1) suggests she is not concerned about excess sugar and high fructose corn syrup in the American diet. She works for the University of Minnesota, and the U of M receives substantial financial support from Cargill (and General Mills). Was her recommendation not to single out high fructose corn syrup a serious conflict of interest?

– Heart failure is the #1 Medicare expenditure. The incidence of heart failure has doubled since 1990. According to the CDC in Atlanta, 1 in 3 children born today will become diabetics. According to the American Heart Association, eighty percent (80%) of diabetics die of heart disease. We have both an expanding population and a steadily increasing incidence of chronic disease. Americans need relief. It’s time to end the confusion about fat and cholesterol. How bad do things have to get before we revise the U.S. Dietary Guidelines in favor of a higher fat whole foods carbohydrate-restricted diet?

Cholesterol isn’t something to be feared, it’s a normal and natural part of a healthy diet.

If you want to know more about cholesterol and heart health, here are some books from my shelf that you might like:

Fat and Cholesterol are Good for You

Good Calories, Bad Calories: Fats, Carbs, and the Controversial Science of Diet and Health

Eat Fat, Lose Fat: The Healthy Alternative to Trans Fats

The Great Cholesterol Con: The Truth About What Really Causes Heart Disease and How to Avoid It

3 Responses to “2010 Dietary Guidelines Are WRONG (Big Surprise)”

  1. Dr. Russell Says:

    Great article Luke! Too many times I see patients, especially young teenagers that have health issues and nobody can tell them what is wrong. Almost always these kids are skipping out on meals or they are eating a bunch of sugar cereal and soda. You should see their faces when I tell the parents and the kids to start eating eggs, bacon, meats, etc. It is as if I had just told them to commit a felony. The look they give me is as if they were breaking the law if they partook of these foods! Bottom line, they need the cholesterol to make those HORMONES that their starving growing bodies need!

  2. Sarah Says:

    Oh, if you could only have seen the nutrition brief we got last week. “Some people say grains make you fat but really they’re not that high in calories so they’re good for you” was but one of the nuggets of wisdom dished out to young minds we send abroad to protect our country and our foreign policy interests.

    Oy vey.

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