Ok, so CholesteroPhobia may not be a word, yet, but it’s my way of describing the fear most Americans have about cholesterol. It seems that through all the vicissitudes of diet fads, cholesterol has always been the outcast. It’s never gotten any love. But, hopefully, after reading this you’ll feel a little more sympathetic. Nonetheless, fear mongers (like Big Pharma) will always exploit opportunities to discredit nature and regal their life-saving drugs. So, why are they wrong about cholesterol?
Of the three major studies “concluding” cholesterol as a culprit for heart disease, one was especially interesting. This early study force-fed chickens and rabbits high-levels of cholesterol. However, given that these animals are mostly vegetarian, it should not have been a surprise that they could not process large amounts of dietary cholesterol, and thus developed atherosclerosis. And somehow they still managed to extrapolate the results of the experiment to humans. Correct me if I am wrong, but last time I checked us humans are omnivores with significantly different physiology than chickens and rabbits.
Since cholesterol is a powerful antioxidant and free radical scavenger, an increase in toxins and free radical activity in the tissues is accompanied by an increase LDL levels. So when heart disease patients have elevated LDL levels, cholesterol and LDL are not the culprits they are simply victim of being present after doing their job. Also, there is a difference between cholesterol in the blood and cholesterol in the tissues. Cholesterol (and LDL) are present in your tissues to protect your cells from toxins, inflammatory fatty acids and free radical damage.
Be it environmental, chemical, emotional, or physical, we have a multitude of stress-induced free radical damage on our body’s cells. Cholesterol, believe it or not, helps to counteract this to keep us feeling and looking young and healthy. Let me be clear to indicate that HDL and LDL are NOT cholesterol, and LDL is not bad. These lipo-proteins actually help to deliver cholesterol to various parts of the body and are both critical to life. LDL delivers cholesterol while HDL brings it back to the liver. The big “bad” LDL is necessary for your cells to make steroidal hormones from cholesterol such as: pregnenolone, testosterone, cortisol, progesterone, estrogen and DHEA.
So you can see that cholesterol from quality sources, such as raw dairy and organic/grass-fed meats, is not responsible for heart disease at all. The problem has to do with stress. And when we ingest poor sources of cholesterol, like from fast food, we just create more stress and inflammation in the body.
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