by Wayne Gendel – June 12, 2001
We know that high levels of cholesterol and triglycerides are associated with many health problems. Considering that in one study 12-year olds have been tested and already showed plaque build-up in their arteries, it is time to get some important information for life-time prevention!
Cholesterol and Triglycerides are the form of fat in which it moves through the bloodstream to your body’s tissues. Whenever your LDL (“bad”) cholesterol is measured high, triglycerides can also be high. Triglyceride levels lower than 200 milligrams per deciliter are considered normal. Whether abnormally high triglyceride levels alone raise the risk of heart disease isn’t known, but many people who have high triglycerides also have high LDL and/or low HDL (“good”) cholesterol levels and together these findings suggest insulin resistance. Insulin resistance is an underlying cause of obesity and high blood pressure, and also increases risk of heart disease and adult-onset diabetes.
In the U.S. cholesterol is considered high if it is above 200 and very high and dangerous above 300. To convert to Canadian numbers, divide by 38.6 which gives us 5.18 and 7.77
I have measured my cholesterol occasionally over the years and found it to always be very low. I am 100-120 which is 2.6 on the Canadian scale. My diet consists of 95% raw food. I eat mainly raw vegetables, fruits, nuts, seeds, avocados, olives, and once a week some cooked food. Three times weekly I also eat seaweeds which are great at dissolving fat in the body.
We’ve learned that the cooked fats (heated oils, roasted nuts, cooked fatty meats, fried foods….), cooked carbs, refined sugars, white and refined flours, excess coffee (more than two cups daily, especially after meals) and overeating anything regularly, will over-stimulate insulin production, which in turn stores food as fat.
First thing that needs to be done is to regulate one’s blood sugar. The higher a food ranks on the glycemic index, the faster it increases glucose in the blood. This in turn pushes up insulin levels, causing the liver to release more triglycerides into the bloodstream.
For a list of the glycemic food index, you may purchase our Healthy Kitchen manual ($10), that is also filled with charts on food preparation from grains, shopping list, suppliers list, food combining, recipes and much more, in total 30 easy to read and follow pages. The glycemic index ranks glucose at an arbitrary figure of 100. Foods with a glycemic index above 100 raise blood sugar even faster than glucose. Those ranking over 70 are all considered high-glycemic-index foods.
Some examples of foods high on the list include ice cream, alcohol, commercial tobacco, pastries, potatoes (except “new” and sweet potatoes), white bread, and watermelon. Foods that rank as “moderate” (between 55 and 70) include most types of rice, pita bread, popcorn, honey and mangoes. Low-glycemic-index foods (ranking below 55) include most beans, vegetables, grapefruit, apples and tomatoes, to name a few. To balance and normalize your blood sugar try eating low on the glycemic index for a few months.
Weight is not always an indication, but losing extra weight will help. These measures will help to lower high blood pressure, as well as lower your triglycerides and further reduce your risk of heart disease. In addition, if you have diabetes, I recommend getting the blood sugar under control immediately. I have had excellent success with our clients, (see testimonials). Have your cholesterol and triglycerides tested after one to three months and it should be lower.
Animal foods do not cause high cholesterol or triglycerides. What causes high cholesterol is mentioned above in this article. To illustrate my point I’ll tell you a little story. I experimented for 1.5 years eating 2 meals daily with organic cream, milk, cheese and fish. My cholesterol before I started was 2.7 or 104 on the U.S. scale. I usually range from as high as 130 to 100. After the 1.5 years of eating fish, cream, cheese, etc. I measured my cholesterol and it was 2.6 or 100! My secret was that I ate the animal products raw! Not pasteurized or cooked! So the highly refined foods are the culprits, not good quality animal foods.