The following is a response to a question submitted from one of my talks.
I do have a question if you have time to answer…
My friend is doing the Keto diet and he is on a pure protein diet and he eats mostly dairy and meats. I am curious why he is able to reduce his cholesterol if he is consuming so much bad fats? This seems to go against what i understood from your talk. If our bodies can only process 100mg of cholesterol then how can he able to reduce his when he is taking in so much of it?
Great Question, _______
There are several factors the could by at play here. For example; If he is trying to lose weight, eating less food and has a overall lower caloric intake that account for the misleading result. It is also important to note that the total cholesterol level doesn’t tell the whole story. You also have to look at the individual LDL, HDL, and ratio levels.
In 1961 the meat industry sponsored a study by Dr. Charles Mann where he contends that cholesterol levels do not influence health. Unable to prove his hypothesis on local people who consumed high amounts of cholesterol he turned to the East African tribe known as the Maasi. They were known for existing almost entirely on meat, blood and milk and were said to have low levels of cholesterol and cardiovascular disease.
They were sheepherders who drove their cattle at high altitudes up to 30 miles every day causing their coronary arteries to dilate to twice their normal size. Which accounts for their ability to pass a treadmill test. However, there was a second study of the Maasi Tribe the meat industry refused to publish. It showed that when autopsies were performed on members of the Maasi who died from accidental death, they found the most massive plaques in their arteries for there age ever seen. When plaques break off (even small ones) they cause stroke or heart attack. Their enlarged coronary arteries only allow them pass treadmill test but not angiogram or autopsy. It turns out the sour milk they drink artificially reduces cholesterol in blood by forcing it directly into arteries.
Even thought knowing your lipid levels is very important it doesn’t necessarily tell the whole story. This clearly shows that they can even be misleading and doesn’t show the effects of blocked receptor sites or plaque build up in the arterial system. In fact nearly half of the people in this country who suffer heart attack or stroke have normal lipid levels. Part of this is due to the fact that the recommendations of the American Heart Association are simply too high and not based on any actual collected data. A good rule to go by is your total cholesterol level should be 100 plus your age and not over 160. It is also important to note that when we run a lipid panel at our office we don’t have people fast. Which is a much more accurate representation of your normal range. In fact many of my clients are able to show levels of around 160 midday after eating.
If you remember the story I told you about Adam, he had six pack abs and tested his body fat levels all of which were in optimal range. 17 minutes later he was dead. The cause of death was a heart attack caused by massive arterial sclerosis. As Clark said during the talk “high fat keto type diets leave great looking corpses.”
I hope this helps,