1. In 1937, Columbia University biochemists David Rittenberg & Rudolph Schoenheimer demonstrated that dietary cholesterol had little or no influence on blood cholesterol. Since this has never been refuted, why do the 2010 Dietary Guidelines limit dietary cholesterol to fewer than 300 mg per day?
2. Dietary cholesterol is poorly absorbed – 50 percent at best (Mary Enig, PhD; Michael I. Gurr, PhD). According to these lipid biochemists, the more cholesterol you eat the less cholesterol you absorb. Since our livers synthesize between 1200-1800 mg of cholesterol daily, why is there any limit on dietary cholesterol in the Dietary Guidelines?
3. In 1997, retired from the University of Minnesota, Ancel Keys, American Heart Association board member – father of the low fat diet – said: “Cholesterol in food has no affect on cholesterol in blood and we’ve known that all along.” Keys recanted but no one was listening to him anymore…
4. Because cholesterol is a precursor to stress hormones, stress can elevate blood cholesterol. When the stress is over, cholesterol will leave the blood and go back to the liver and other tissues. Frequent fluctuations of blood cholesterol due to fear, stress, weather, activity and age represent normal body functioning – not a disease to fight with drugs.
5. 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 Vitamin D and all adrenal and sex hormones, why wouldn’t the 2010 Dietary Guidelines discuss the essential nature of cholesterol instead?
6. There is no such thing as “good” or “bad” cholesterol – descriptions cooked up to sell cholesterol-lowering drugs. Referred to as bad, LDL is not cholesterol and LDL is not bad. LDL is a lipoprotein that delivers cholesterol to the 70 trillion cells in our bodies. (Only oxidized cholesterol is bad. Chronic elevated blood sugar oxidizes LDL and other blood factors such as hemoglobin.)
7. LDL – Low Density Lipoprotein – is not one thing. There are LDL sub-factions (such as LDL subclass A and subclass B). Knowing your Triglyceride level (TG) and understanding lipoprotein sub-fractions is much more important in preventing and reversing heart disease than measuring total cholesterol (TC). Ask your doctor to test for LDL sub-fractions and stop scaring you about your total cholesterol number.
8. The statement “saturated fat raises blood cholesterol” is a false and misleading oversimplification. Saturated fat intake and blood cholesterol levels are not in a teeter-totter relationship. There are many different types of saturated fat and many reasons why blood cholesterol rises and falls.
9. Fat in food is always a combination of saturated and unsaturated fat. Butter, as an example, contains 8 different saturated fats. One of them, stearic acid, a common saturated fat found in many foods, promotes higher levels of HDL, a lipoprotein associated with protection from heart disease. (Michael I. Gurr, lipid biochemist; Dr. Eric Rimm, Harvard, member, 2010 Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee.)
10. Wouldn’t recommending that Americans eat a variety of healthy natural fats be more helpful than labeling fats “good or bad” depending on their degree of saturation? Besides, “saturated” means chemically stable – nothing else. Chemically stable saturated fat represents 50 percent or more of the fat found in our 70 trillion cell membranes.
11. During the first meeting of the 2010 Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee, Harvard’s Dr. Eric Rimm testified that he is concerned about “the artificial limit on fat” in the Dietary Guidelines. He mentioned that “he could be thrown off the stage for saying this.” No – he wasn’t thrown off the stage – he was simply ignored!
12. Anything that promotes HDL (such as natural dietary fat) puts downward pressure on triglycerides (TG) – blood fats made in the liver from excess carbohydrates. Elevated TG is 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.
13. The 2010 Dietary Guidelines should say: Eating beef – especially from the pasture – and enjoying some dark chocolate – from the rain forest – provides saturated stearic acid and monounsaturated oleic acid – natural healthy fats that protect you from heart disease.
14. The primary dietary cause of 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. Since 1980, Americans are consuming at least 400 additional carbohydrate calories a day – much of it sugar and corn syrup.
15. Carbohydrates raise blood sugar and insulin levels = fats do not. Given the fact that we are facing an unprecedented diabetes epidemic, why is the role of excess carbs in promoting obesity and diabetes not addressed in the 2010 Dietary Guidelines? Why is the limit on added sugars a whopping 25 percent of calories?
16. Boxed breakfast cereals raise blood sugar rapidly, but there is no warning about blood-sugar-raising foods in the 2010 Dietary Guidelines. Since blood sugar has a narrow healthy range (and cholesterol in blood has a wide normal range), why is elevated blood sugar not mentioned in the 2010 Dietary Guidelines?
17. By weight, all children’s breakfast cereals are 30 to 50 percent sugar. If the federal government is concerned about reducing the incidence of obesity and diabetes in children, why isn’t there a warning to parents about blood-sugar-raising foods in the Dietary Guidelines, especially those that are being marketed to children?
18. Why wasn’t sugar and high fructose corn syrup (HFCS) singled out in the 2010 Dietary Guidelines. Dr. Joanne Slavin, self appointed as Carbohydrate Chair, defended the use of HFCS by saying “a calorie is a calorie is a calorie.” 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 her department at 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 conflict of interest as the expense of the 75 million Americans who are diabetic or pre-diabetic?
19. Metabolic Syndrome is now considered a primary risk factor for coronary heart disease. Metabolic Syndrome includes elevated blood sugar, hyperinsulinism, high triglycerides, low HDL and is strongly associated with high carbohydrate diets. Why isn’t Metabolic Syndrome specifically discussed in the 2010 Dietary Guidelines? Will Metabolic Syndrome be discussed in the 2015 Dietary Guidelines?
20. A high carbohydrate diet is associated with elevated triglycerides (TG) and depressed HDL. Depressed HDL is a potent risk factor for coronary heart disease. A Harvard study verified that people with the highest TG and the lowest HDL (top quartile) were 16 times more likely to die of heart disease than people with the lowest TG and highest HDL.
21. Blood-sugar-raising carbohydrates have a direct and immediate effect on blood sugar and insulin levels and, in the words of science writer Gary Taubes, “on the disruption of the entire harmonic ensemble of the human body.” Isn’t this worth knowing?
22. High insulin levels (hyperinsulinism) explain why Americans have fattened. Insulin is the fat storage hormone. When insulin levels are elevated – either chronically or after a meal – we make and store fat and lock it up in adipose tissue. When fat is locked up, it is not available as a fuel to the trillions of cells in the body. Hunger is the result.
23. By stimulating insulin levels, carbohydrates make us hungry and fat. High circulating insulin – in response to excess dietary carbohydrates – is the root cause of weight gain, obesity, diabetes, Metabolic Syndrome, and coronary heart disease – which leads to congestive heart failure.
24. The incidence of slow, suffocating heart failure has doubled since 1987 – the year that cholesterol-lowering statin drugs were approved in record time. Heart failure is now the Number One Medicare expenditure – the Number One reason anyone age 65 or older is in the hospital.
25. According to the CDC in Atlanta, 1 in 3 children born today will become diabetics and 80 percent of diabetics die of heart disease. We have both an expanding population and a steadily increasing incidence of diabetes and heart disease. Americans need relief. 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?
Category: Dietary Guidelines
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