Steven Carney on the LinkedIn Nutrition Group has just drawn attention to this excellent article by leading heart surgeon, Dr. Dwight Lundell: http://www.sott.net/article/242516-Heart-Surgeon-Speaks-Out-On-What-Really-Causes-Heart-Disease. Dr Lundell speaks of how lowering cholesterol became the overriding objective and any deviation is regarded as ‘heresy’. He says, “These recommendations [about lowering cholesterol, radically lowered last week by NICE] are no longer scientifically or morally defensible. The discovery a few years ago that inflammation in the artery wall is the real cause of heart disease is slowly leading to a paradigm shift in how heart disease and other chronic ailments will be treated.” Sadly, the shift is still glacial in its speed with the NICE recommendations reinforcing the absurd orthodoxy about cholesterol.
Underpinning the cholesterol myth are the interests of the drugs and food manufactures, who make big money combating cholesterol, which is in fact vital to our health. The facts are plain, as Dr Lundell, notes, “Despite the fact that 25% of the population takes expensive statin medications and despite the fact we have reduced the fat content of our diets, more Americans will die this year of heart disease than ever before.”
Please go to his brilliant article for the full text, but this passage just has to be repeated here: “What thoughtful person would willfully expose himself repeatedly to foods or other substances that are known to cause injury to the body? Well, smokers perhaps, but at least they made that choice wilfully. The rest of us have simply followed the recommended mainstream diet that is low in fat and high in polyunsaturated fats and carbohydrates, not knowing we were causing repeated injury to our blood vessels. This repeated injury creates chronic inflammation leading to heart disease, stroke, diabetes and obesity. Let me repeat that: The injury and inflammation in our blood vessels is caused by the low fat diet recommended for years by mainstream medicine.”
Where care must be taken is to avoid the inflammation in the arteries, which leads to deposits and then growths in the endothelium. Deposits harden/narrow our arteries and create a vicious circle of high blood pressure, which itself damages the arteries (you have about 100,000 miles of veins and arteries to look after). Growths break away with a release of blood thickening agents causing stroke or heart attack. A major cause is sugar (artificial sweeteners can be even worse) and Dr Lundell explains, “Extra sugar molecules attach to a variety of proteins that in turn injure the blood vessel wall. This repeated injury to the blood vessel wall sets off inflammation. When you spike your blood sugar level several times a day, every day, it is exactly like taking sandpaper to the inside of your delicate blood vessels.”
Dr Lundell advises us to eat as our grandparents ate, home cooking without fear of saturated fat and avoiding processed foods. Very good advice, save that I would add that we still suffer due to the fact that since we ceased to be hunter-gatherers our diet does not contain enough L-arginine. As you will see from the ADNO page on this site Arginine Derived Nitric Oxide combats inflammation, relaxes and cleanses the arteries and boosts the immune system together with many other wonders, where it contributes to most and probably all bodily functions. By adding a good Arginine supplement to your diet you can live like your great (x 2000) grandparents!