CHOLESTEROL IS A NATURAL SUBSTANCE your body produces for a
variety of uses. It is carried through the body in three containers -- LDL, HDL,
and VLDL -- that deliver it to cells along with triglycerides. The average man
reasons that the cholesterol in his scrambled eggs must surely end up in his
arteries somehow, and this makes him do things like order egg-white omelets for
breakfast. There is indeed a link between the cholesterol you eat and the cholesterol in your arteries.
It's just not the "eat more, have more" worry that's been drummed into you for years. In fact, your body's production and uptake of cholesterol is highly regulated; eat a six-egg omelet and your body simply produces less cholesterol because of the dietary onslaught.
"There is a very weak connection between the LDL cholesterol we measure and dietary cholesterol," Dr. Krauss says. "I spend a lot of time talking to reporters and trying to explain that dietary cholesterol is not the same as blood cholesterol." He adds that the 200 milligrams of cholesterol most people eat every day is NOTHING compared with the 800 milligrams their bodies produce [my EMPHASIS].
But you don't have to take his word for it. "It is now acknowledged that the original studies purporting to show a linear relation between cholesterol intake and coronary heart disease may have contained fundamental study design
flaws," wrote the author of a recent review in the International Journal of
Clinical Practice. [HERE. Jones PJ citing Hu et al]
The author suggests to lower small dense LDL, the actual heart disease culprit
Targeting the Killer LDL Small changes, fewer small particles
"Small, dense particles of LDL are much more inflammatory
than larger particles," says Paul Ziajka, M.D., Ph.D., a clinical lipidologist with the Southeast Lipid Association. Here's how to snuff the little devils.
Crack an egg
Down an omelet every morning and you may lower your small-particle count, University of Connecticut researchers recently found. People who ate three whole eggs a day for 12 weeks dropped their
small-LDL levels by an average of 18 percent.
Choose your meds wisely
A class of drugs known as fibrates, which includes Tricor, specifically targets small, dense LDL, says Dr. Ziajka. The effect is
significant only when your triglycerides are also elevated, he says. [Note: no statin mentioned...*haa*; actually low carb, sat fats and fish oil omega-3 work far FAR better than fibrates, PPAR drugs]
Pop some niacin
"Most drugs shift particle size after the cholesterol is made," Dr. Ziajka says. "Niacin causes the liver to produce larger particles."
Try a no-flush variety (Dr. Ziajka recommends Slo-Niacin) starting with 500 milligrams a day and building to 2,000. There are side effects, so talk to your doctor first. [Note: no-flush doesn't work; slo-niacin is a lower-flush type of niacin]
Lighten your load
Deflating your spare tire may reduce your small, dense LDL cholesterol, say scientists at Children's Hospital Oakland Research Institute. The majority of overweight men who were pattern B (mostly small LDL) switched to pattern A (mostly large LDL)
after they lost an average of 19 pounds.
Have a glass
That nightly beer does more than relax you -- it may also lower your small, dense LDL, a recent Journal of Clinical Endocrinology
Metabolism study found. Men who drank 7 to 13 alcoholic drinks a week had 20 percent fewer small-LDL particles than men who didn't drink at all. [Note: beer aint paleo]