Cholesterol Explained - A Unified Theory - 18 Wheelers and You

October 20, 2014

Cholesterol Explained – A Unified Theory 

 Reference:   The Art and Science of Low Carb Living by Volek and Phinney 

 You don’t understand how cholesterol works. It seems so complicated. Your doctor has so many urgent, compelling reasons why you should take statins, but you don’t feel bad and you don’t get any information about how to fix it on your own. Here is that fix. 

I want you to understand it in just 250 words. One key, indisputable principle. Your body can only store 1,500 calories as carbs. After that, you make fat with extra carbs. Now, presume that your carb storage tank is full – all 1,500 calories. You eat another bowl of pasta, or rice or potatoes. Now, what happens? Your blood glucose goes up. You make insulin in response to the higher blood glucose. You have to start making fat. You do that to a large part in your liver. That’s the factory. Your turn on that factory by making insulin that rises in response to those extra carbs you ate that filled your tank over the top. But your liver is in your stomach and your fat tissue is ….where___________(fill in the blank).   

How do you get from the liver to the fat tissue? You have to transport the fat in your blood system. Your blood is largely made up of water.   Does fat dissolve in water? NO! So, our bodies have developed an ingenious packaging system that takes a globule of fat and wraps a coat around it that makes it water-soluble. We call that globule an LDL. Onto that LDL, we add a protein called Apo-B that is essentially the docking station for the little transporter to attach to a fat cell and empty itself into a fat cell. Just like the space shuttle, we have to transport stuff from our liver to our fat cells, and we need a docking mechanism. 

 Now, another clear set of principles. Big fat LDLs are safe and don’t cause trouble. Little small, dense ones cause a heap of hurt. They are the ones that get into blood vessels and start making stiff arteries and filled with plaque. That happens particularly when glucose sticks to them- called glycation, and makes them act like inflammatory signals. What is the fastest, most efficient way to make a big, safe LDL? Eat bacon (or butter, or other saturated animal fat). What’s the fastest way to make a dangerous little LDL? Eat cookies, bread, cereal, pasta, rice, potatoes, donuts, bagels, sugared sodas……all the isles in the grocery store filled with packaged food. You want big, fluffy LDLs. 

 So, here is my simple analogy. Your LDL is really just a delivery truck, an 18 wheeler, bringing its manufactured product (fat) from the liver where it was made (the factory) to your fat cell where it is stored (the warehouse). Your blood is the free way system. HDLs, the good cholesterol, is the stuff that is supposedly safer for you. Do you know the fastest way to raise your HDLs and keep them up?   Bacon and saturated animal fat. And a diet with less than 20 grams of carbs in it. By one year, a person on that diet will have an HDL of 100 and a total cholesterol/HDL ratio of about 2.0 – making them ridiculously safe and unable to make a heart attack.   What’s the analogy for HDLs? They are empty 18 wheelers, waiting for you to eat some carbs so they can fill up and turn back into LDLs. But when you are on a high-fat, low-carb diet, you don’t have anything to transport so the 18 wheelers just hang out, parked, with nothing to do. 

 WWW. What will work for me? Buy Eric Westman's book. But summarize the analogy again.   Understanding cholesterol is simple. If you have high LDLs, it is simply a marker that you are overwhelming your body's ability to process and digest carbs. Same message if your HDLs are low. If you want to change that, stop eating carbs and start eating saturated fat from animals. This is exactly opposite, diametrically opposite, completely and utterly opposite to the teaching of the American Heart Association and the American Diabetes Association. And they have had 50 years to get it right, and continue to be diametrically, astoundingly, utterly wrong. That’s why you have failed, and they have failed. Our health authorities keep telling you to eat more carbohydrates.   We didn’t evolve eating carbs. We discovered them only 5,000 years ago with the advent of agriculture.   Prior to that, we had carbs only at the end of the growing season, just before the starvation season (winter in Asia, dry season in Africa).   Carbs are your internal bodily signal that starvation is coming, you better eat up, gain weight and get ready for winter.    

Pop Quiz

  1. The fastest way to make big, safe LDLs is to eat what kind of food?                Answer:  Saturated animal fat – bacon and butter – while eating NO carbs.
  1. The fastest way to raise your good cholesterol, your HDL, is how?               Answer:  Eat bacon and butter – while eating NO carbs..
  1. The fastest way to make deadly, dangerous small LDLs is to eat?                 Answer:  Bread, donuts, cake, potatoes, rice – easily digested carbs
  1. So, LDLs sensibly represent your body’s equivalent of 18 wheelers delivering fat from the factory to the warehouse (liver to fat cell). T or F                     Answer:  Yup. That simple
  1. And your HDLs are simply the equivalent of empty 18 wheelers with nothing to do, sitting around on empty parking lots. Indicating you must have not eating any carbs for months (must be January in hunter-gatherer season)! T or F                    Answer:   Yup again
  1. Knowing all this, it makes perfect sense for you to take a statin to lower your cholesterol? T or F                          Answer:  Are you insane? You can fix it completely if you want. Get your cholesterol checked at AnyLabTestNow. Go on the Atkins Diet. Go back in two weeks and do it again. Prove it to yourself.   Don’t pay any attention to anyone who tells you otherwise. They are all in the pocket of big pharma that wants to sell you junk and big medicine that is perfectly happy to keep you sick.