- The Diet-Heart Hypothesis: Stuck At The Starting Gate
- The Diet-Heart Hypothesis: A Little Perspective
- The Diet-Heart Hypothesis: Subdividing Lipoproteins
- The Diet-Heart Hypothesis: Oxidized LDL, Part 1
When I was a child, red meat was demonized. Everyone knew that eating well meant eating chicken — lots of chicken. “Heart healthy” cookbooks cropped up everywhere, each one full of the same advice. Of course, these days, science has shown us that the original lipid hypothesis — the idea that eating saturated fat and cholesterol leads to heart disease — is simply false. We now know for example, that our bodies use cholesterol to heal and repair damage to our cell walls. Simply because cholesterol is present at the site of the injury, doesn’t mean that it’s responsible for the harm done. It’s like saying our white blood cells cause infection, when in fact they are our body’s defense mechanism to fight infection and keep it at bay. Because most cell wall damage happens in the form of inflammation (which can lead to atherosclerosis, the hardening of the arteries), you can think of cholesterol like firemen. They’re on the scene to put out the fire, and are not themselves responsible for the fire.