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Old 07-03-2014, 04:54 PM   #4
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Join Date: Jun 2011
Posts: 1,893
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WOE: Low Carb High Fat, Primal
Start Date: June 16, 2011
Low carb MAY not lower your total cholesterol or LDL (good explanation by Ravenrose above). It WILL lower your triglycerides, which are markers of inflammation. Those are probably the best indicator of risk, despite the emphasis on LDL, which, it turns out, does NOT correlate to cardiovascular risk. LDL has gotten so much attention, I think, because statins will lower LDL, and the data has been manipulated to make it appear that that has a significant impact on risk. The drug companies have managed to control doctor's opinions--they pay for the research, they educate the medical community, their message is the one heard.

In reality, statins do not reduce cardiovascular risk, except for a small segment of the population (males under 65 who have had at least one cardiovascular event already).

Keep in mind that the typical way of calculating LDL-C becomes inaccurate when triglycerides are lower than 100. So you may appear to have a higher LDL than you really do. Meanwhile, your triglycerides will be down and HDL up--exactly what you want to see.

And when triglycerides go down, HDL goes UP. HDL is known as "good cholesterol" but it isn't even really cholesterol (neither is LDL for that matter), however, higher HDL is protective and lowers cardiovascular risk to a degree. Since total cholesterol counts HDL and LDL, that's why your total cholesterol may go up, but that doesn't mean your risk of cardiovascular disease goes up, it may just mean that your HDL is up--a good thing.

Fun fact: Post menopausal women with higher cholesterol live LONGER and are more healthy than women with so called "good" cholesterol numbers.

So the easy way out is to believe that total and LDL cholesterol correlate to cardiovascular risk (they don't) and therefore believe that using low fat highly inflammatory oils to replace saturated fats (Omega 6 oils lower LDL but they are highly inflammatory), high carbs (sends triglycerides through the roof and lowers HDL) keeps cholesterol numbers low but does NOT translate into better cardiovascular health (50% of people who have cardiovascular events have LOW cholesterol). People hung up on the numbers for LDL and total think they've done a great thing to lower LDL and total, but it's not the case. However, it sells a lot of statins and carbs, doesn't it?
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