Cholesterol and fat: A lot of people relate cholesterol and fat as if they were the same thing. Is cholesterol made of fat, is cholesterol a type of fat, and is cholesterol found in fat?
Cholesterol is found in fat but cholesterol is not fat. Cholesterol in your blood stream is like the plaque on your teeth, it actually builds up. Cholesterol has a purpose in your body. A lot of people believe that if you have got vegetable oil and it is cholesterol free, that must be good, and if you’ve got eggs which are mostly cholesterol and that’s bad; the other thing that people believe is that cholesterol will make you fat.
Cholesterol does not make you fat, too much of it blocks up your blood vessels. Some people say “what if I cut out all the cholesterol in my life, so that I will just have food which doesn’t have cholesterol in it?”. Well, let me ask you this: What do we feed cows to make them fat, and gives them high cholesterol? Do we feel them fatty foods, or do we feed them with grain? What I think you’ll find is that grain-fed beef has a higher fat content, and grain-fed beef also has a higher cholesterol level.
You might say that the biology of a cow is somewhat different from the biology of a human, and that is true. However, if you also look at the biology of a pig you will find that the biological structure of a pig is very similar to a human.
What do we feed pigs to fatten them up? Do we feed them fat, or do we feed them grain? I can assure you that what we feed them is grain.
If you have a strategy for replacing all of the fatty items out of your life with high carbohydrate foods, particularly refined sugars, you actually are not going to get the result you want – you are not going to reduce your cholesterol levels.
The other thing is that the body needs cholesterol as part of its process, so either you can have the high density lipids (HDLs), or the low density lipids (LDLs). Now the scientists have figured out that the HDLs are good ones and the LDLs are bad ones, bad for cholesterol. If you look at something like eggs, eggs are high in cholesterol, and for a while people were saying you should not have any eggs. Now what we realise is that if you eat eggs and the cholesterol in them, then your body won’t produce more cholesterol, your body will use the cholesterol from the eggs which is the HDL the non-sticky.
Health and fitness is a key part of your lifestyle because we know now that heart attacks, for example, do not sneak up on you in a couple of years. Heart disease starts when you’re 20, and starts showing up when you’re in your 40s and 50s. You really need to start looking at a healthy diet from your 20s onwards.
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