Saturated fat and cholesterol have been wrongfully vilified as the culprits of heart disease for more than six decades.
Meanwhile, research has repeatedly identified refined carbs, sugar and trans fats found in processed foods as the real enemy.
The first scientific
evidence linking trans fats to heart disease while exonerating
saturated fats was published in 1957 by the late Fred Kummerow,1
biochemist and author of "Cholesterol Is Not the Culprit - A Guide to
Preventing Heart Disease."
reanalysis revealed cherry-picked data was responsible for creating
Keys' link, but by then the saturated fat myth was already firmly
As saturated fat and cholesterol were shunned, the food industry switched to using trans fats (found in margarine, vegetable shortening and partially hydrogenated vegetable oils) and sugar instead.
In the bottom page video,
Joe Rogan interviews Teicholz on her 2014 book, "The Big Fat
Surprise - Why Butter, Meat and Cheese Belong in a Healthy Diet,"
which grew out of that initial exposé.
She also delves into the
politics and shady underbelly of nutritional science, revealing how
the food industry has manipulated the scientific discussion and
built a largely false foundation for the nutritional recommendations
And, when you strongly believe something to be true, you will tend to find the evidence you're looking for and ignore anything that refutes it.
So, it's really a human
This certainly included Keys, who was passionately wed to his hypothesis that saturated fat caused heart disease.
The American Heart
Association (AHA) started encouraging Americans to limit dietary
fat, particularly animal fats, to reduce their risk of heart disease
in 1961, and maintains this position to this day.
Yet historical data clearly shows this strategy is not working, because concomitant with low-fat diets becoming the cultural norm, heart disease rates have soared.
The AHA also ignores
research demonstrating the low-fat, low-cholesterol strategy does
more harm than good. For example:
Overall, women with "high cholesterol" (greater than 270 mg/dl) actually had a 28 percent lower mortality risk than women with "low cholesterol" (less than 183 mg/dl). 6
A 2014 meta-analysis published in the Annals of Internal Medicine, using data from nearly 80 studies and more than a half-million people, found those who consume higher amounts of saturated fat have no more heart disease than those who consume less.
They also did not find
less heart disease among those eating higher amounts of unsaturated
fat, including both olive oil and corn oil. 8,9
British journal of nutrition
Your Body Needs
Saturated Fat and Cholesterol
For example, cholesterol
is needed for the construction of your cell membranes and helps
regulate the protein pathways required for cell signaling. Having
insufficient amounts of cholesterol may negatively impact your brain
health, hormone levels, heart disease risk and more.
One way to understand this need is to consider the foods ancient humans consumed. Many experts believe we evolved as hunter-gatherers and have eaten a variety of animal products for most of our existence on Earth.
To suggest that saturated
fats are suddenly harmful to us makes no sense, at least not from an
Vitamins A, D, E and K
are fat-soluble, which means you need the fat that comes naturally
in animal foods along with the vitamins in order to absorb those
Then there's carb-addiction, of course, which further fuels the cycle of hunger and overeating.
What's worse, when you eat a high-carb diet for a long time, it blocks or shuts down your body's ability to burn fat, which means all of your body fat remains right where it is, as it cannot be accessed for fuel.
By shifting your diet from high-carb to high-fat, you eventually regain the metabolic flexibility to burn both types of fuel - fat and sugar - which solves most of these problems; the hunger and cycle of overeating, weight gain, inflammation and related disease processes.
The Problem With Vegetable Oils
As mentioned earlier, Teicholz's book also delves into a new nutritional twist that has developed as the dangers of trans fats have been exposed and accepted.
While the U.S. Food and Drug Administration has removed partially hydrogenated oils - the primary source of trans fats - from the list of "generally recognized as safe" ingredients, the vegetable oils (such as peanut, corn and soy oil) that have replaced them may have even more harmful health ramifications.
When heated, vegetable oils degrade into extremely toxic oxidation products.
According to Teicholz, more than 100 dangerous oxidation products have been found in a single piece of chicken fried in vegetable oils. As early as the 1940s, animal experiments showed animals would develop cirrhosis of the liver or enlarged liver when fed vegetable oils.
When fed heated vegetable oils, they died prematurely.
Cyclic aldehydes are among the most toxic of these byproducts, and animal research has shown even low levels of exposure cause serious inflammation, which is associated with heart disease and Alzheimer's.
Findings like these make the AHA's recommendation to use margarine and vegetable oils all the more troubling.
In her book, Teicholz also cites research in which aldehydes were found to cause toxic shock in animals by damaging the gastrointestinal tract.
We now know a lot more about the role your gut plays in your health, and the idea that aldehydes from heated vegetable oils can damage your gastric system is frighteningly consistent with the rise we see in immune problems and gastrointestinal-related diseases.
How a Cyclical Ketogenic Diet Can Improve Your Health
Two-thirds of the American population is overweight or obese, 10 more than half of all Americans struggle with chronic illness, 11 1 in 5 deaths in the U.S. is obesity-related 12 and 1 in 4 deaths is related to heart disease. 13
Saturated dietary fats and cholesterol are not to blame for these statistics. The evidence is actually quite clear: Excessive net carbohydrate intake is the primary culprit behind these disease statistics, primarily by decimating your mitochondrial function.
To address this, you need to eat a diet that allows your body to burn fat as its primary fuel rather than sugars, and to become an efficient fat burner, you actually have to eat fat.
A primary difference between this program and other ketogenic diets is the cyclical component.
It's important to realize that the "metabolic magic" in the mitochondria occurs during the refeeding phase, not during the starvation phase. If you're constantly in ketosis, you're missing out on one of the most valuable benefits of the ketogenic diet.
Basically, once you have established ketosis, you then cycle healthy carbs back in. As a general rule, I recommend adding 100 to 150 grams of carbs on the day or days each week that you do strength training.
Some of the most important benefits of this kind of eating program are:
One of the first things people really notice once they start burning fat for fuel is that any former "brain fog" lifts, and they can suddenly think very clearly.
As mentioned earlier, ketones are a preferred fuel for your brain; hence, the improved mental clarity.
One of the reasons you can survive a long time without food is due to the process of ketosis, which spares protein breakdown. 20
A fairly consistent effect seen in people on a ketogenic diet is that blood levels of leucine and other important structural proteins go up, allowing these proteins to perform a number of important signaling functions.
Ketones also mimic the life span extending properties of,
Sources and References