Thursday, December 13, 2007

What if bad fat isn’t so bad?

I'm working, and don't really have time to do this....but I had to post this!!

MSNBC has an article out that is pro fat! It's written by Nina Teicholz and notes that

Suppose you were forced to live on a diet of red meat and whole milk. A diet that, all told, was at least 60 percent fat — about half of it saturated. If your first thoughts are of statins and stents, you may want to consider the curious case of the Masai, a nomadic tribe in Kenya and Tanzania.

In the 1960s, a Vanderbilt University scientist named George Mann, M.D., found that Masai men consumed this very diet (supplemented with blood from the cattle they herded). Yet these nomads, who were also very lean, had some of the lowest levels of cholesterol ever measured and were virtually free of heart disease.

Scientists, confused by the finding, argued that the tribe must have certain genetic protections against developing high cholesterol. But when British researchers monitored a group of Masai men who moved to Nairobi and began consuming a more modern diet, they discovered that the men's cholesterol subsequently skyrocketed.

Similar observations were made of the Samburu — another Kenyan tribe — as well as the Fulani of Nigeria. While the findings from these cultures seem to contradict the fact that eating saturated fat leads to heart disease, it may surprise you to know that this "fact" isn't a fact at all. It is, more accurately, a hypothesis from the 1950s that's never been proved. (Emphasis mine)
In the article, Ms Teiholz discusses how this theory became accepted as fact and the controversy that was heard at the time. She also talks about the findings of the Cochrane Collaboration, which did a meta-analysis of studies that met strict criteria.

"I was disappointed that we didn't find something more definitive," says Lee Hooper, Ph.D., who led the Cochrane review. If this exhaustive analysis didn't provide evidence of the dangers of saturated fat, says Hooper, it was probably because the studies reviewed didn't last long enough, or perhaps because the participants didn't lower their saturated-fat intake enough. Of course, there is a third possibility, which Hooper doesn't mention: The diet-heart hypothesis is incorrect.
Really, a very positive article! Check it out!


Maybe the tide really is changing?

2 comments:

Say NO to Kimkins said...

Maybe things really ARE changing, Cindy.

Did you see this yesterday?

Diabetes Group Backs Low-Carb Diets - washingtonpost.com

Hopefully everyone will get on board with this!

Thanks for sharing!

Cindy Moore said...

I did see that, and also a post by Dr Vernon (http://rjr10036.typepad.com/askdrvernon/2007/12/editors-note-so.html)

This is the way we're going to see things change, slowly. The recommendations, while lukewarm, are a good thing, but just the first step!