Atkins Cardiac Nightmare

Discussion in 'Health Nutrition and Supplements' started by davidbod, Mar 27, 2004.

  1. davidbod

    davidbod New Member

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    Welcome to my Atkins Cardiac Nightmare.

    I have been on the diet since late July, have lost 35 lbs and for the last 4 months have been steady at 190 lbs. As part of a wellness program my company gave us the opportunity to have a fasting lipid profile done. I would have done this in my yearly checkup, but I do that near my birthday in April.

    In late January I had blood drawn for the test and I just got the results back. My last results which were April 2003 had my total cholesterol around 235 and I weighed about 225lbs.

    Current results:

    Total Cholesterol: 171
    HDL: 73
    LDL: 84
    TriGlycerides: 70

    Pretty darn amazing.
     
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  2. mmpc001

    mmpc001 New Member

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    That can't be true?!?! Didn't you know the Atkins diet is HORRIBLE for your health? :p:D

    I've been on it since October (2003) and have dropped over 40 lbs. My last physical also showed my cholesterol had dropped (sorry, don't have the exact number handy)...
     
  3. stevek

    stevek New Member

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    same here. nice good test results.
    though I eat mroe fruit and some brown rice.
    but I am sure will will drop dead any time of clogged arteries.
     
  4. Beastt

    Beastt New Member

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    I eat a very high-carb, low-fat diet and my last blood test showed a total blood cholesterol of 72.

    Good luck
     
  5. patch70

    patch70 New Member

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    The graph comparing mortality against serum choleserol level is a "U" shaped curve.

    Very low choleserol levels like this have a higher mortality rate and possibly higher rates of strokes and dementia. Such low levels also have higher rates of liver & colon cancer. (Song et al. American Journal of Epidemiology 2000, Vol 151, Issue 8, pages 739-747.)

    The lowest mortality is roughly 160 (depending on the study) and then the death rate rises as the cholesterol level rises thereafter.
     
  6. davidbod

    davidbod New Member

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    The point of the post was just to show that the Atkins diet is not what people miss represent it to be. I'm sure the right person on a different diet could achieve the same results that I have, but I'm just another statistic that backs up the studies that have already proved that a lower carb higher fat diet can actually improve cholesterol.

    I also agree with patch70. If your total blood cholesterol is realy 72 then your HDL is probably way too low. Fat / cholesterol are important for the body to work correctly, and the total cholesterol score is much less important than the right ratios of the different types.

    David
     
  7. Beastt

    Beastt New Member

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    I'd love to see the chart you speak of. I searched for over an hour on the web and was unable to find such a chart. If you can post a copy, I'd be very appreciative.

    "You may have heard that cholesterol is necessary for bodily functioning. This was one of the key features of the National Commission on Egg Nutrition's advertizing campaign that was ruled, 'false, misleading, deceptive and unfair'" - Judge Earnest G. Barnes.
    For clarification, cholesterol is necessary. Cholesterol intake is not.

    This was from a law suit filed by the Federal Trade Commision against the National Commission on Egg Nutrition. The Commission on Egg Nutrition obviously lost and were forced to abandoned their misleading advertizing campaign.

    In reviewing the egg industry's defense of dietary cholesterol on these grounds, the court heard testimony from many of the nation's top medical researchers. The egg industry, of course, brought in its own experts. After considering all the presentations and arguments, the court found that there is not a single case of anyone ever suffering from a deficiency of dietary cholesterol.
    Source: Diet for a New America, John Robbins, Stillpoint Publishing, 1987, page 222.

    "As far as we can determine, all of us would do just as well if we had no cholesterol in our diet. Cholesterol can be made by all of the cells in the body so we don't need to take in any." -- Dr. Robert Levy, Director of the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute.

    "There is no known evidence that low-cholesterol diets are harmful, or that dietary cholesterol is an essential nutrient in any human condition." -- Task Force to the American Society of Clinical Nutrition

    "The amount of HDL made by the body is dependent upon the amount of total cholesterol present. Since HDL helps eliminate excess cholesterol and LDL, it will become lower as total cholesterol drops, as not as much is needed.
    There are no studies that examine the risk predictive value of HDL in people with low total cholesterol...
    The Framingham Heart Study made it clear that heart attacks (and by inference heart disease) are almost unknown in people whose total cholesterol is less than 150 mg/dl (3.9 mm/l), regardless of the HDL level. "
    -- Dr. Neal Pinckney

    http://www.zonecanada.com/Articles/Articles_Cholesterol.htm
    Question: Are there any dangers of having too low a cholesterol level? Mine has been in the 90's for a few months now.

    Answer: You raise an interesting question. Back in 1994, the American Heart Association Task Force on Cholesterol Issues put out a statement entitled "Very Low Cholesterol and Cholesterol Lowering" which noted that there is an increase in deaths from trauma, cancer, hemorrhagic stroke and respiratory and infectious diseases among those with total cholesterol levels less than 160 mg/dl. However, a substantial portion of those deaths seemed to be due to poor health unrelated to low cholesterol.
     
  8. Beastt

    Beastt New Member

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    (Continued)

    I've had low cholesterol now since I was a small boy. I am now 30 years old and have read various literature about what can cause low cholesterol levels, one of them being liver disease. My cholesterol ranges from 108-125. I have had liver functions tests all of them were normal. Doctors tell me it is hereditary, as my brother also has a low figure (@ 120). Should I worry about this. Please let your other readers know. Thanks so much. This forum is excellent.
    __________
    Dear Robert C, If your cholesterol has always been low, there is unlikely any cause for concern.
    -- Dr. Kevin Pho

    http://www.drmirkin.com/archive/7202.html
    A report in the medical journal, Preventive Medicine, shows that it's healthful to have a low cholesterol (1).

    Young men with low blood cholesterol levels were the ones most likely to enjoy good health and live long lives. The only ones with low cholesterols who were likely to die early were those who smoked.

    Previous studies have associated low blood cholesterol levels with liver cancer, lung disease, depression, alcoholism and suicide. The latest data shows that a low cholesterol may be associated with cancer, but does not cause it. Before a person develops the symptoms of cancer, he often loses interest in eating and loses weight, which causes his cholesterol to drop. The most famous study on the effects of cholesterol on health/ was done in Framingham, Massachusetts. Blood cholesterol levels were tested every two years. Researchers showed that cholesterols started to fall up to 8 years prior to a person dying of cancer, and that those with the greatest fall in cholesterol in a 4 years period were those who were most likely to develop cancer (2,3).

    A study from Russia showed that men who have low blood cholesterol levels are more likely to drink, are much thinner and have far less education than men with normal or high cholesterol levels. Lacking formal education, drinking heavily and getting into accidents caused both the low cholesterol and the early deaths (4). Lung disease, alcoholism, certain types of cancers and many other illnesses suppress appetite, so people eat less, causing their blood cholesterol levels to drop significantly (5,6).

    There is no evidence that a low blood cholesterol causes you to die early. If you have a low blood cholesterol level, your doctor could check you for a hidden cancer, addiction to alcohol, cigarettes or drugs, emotional disorder or other disease. If none is found, you should be delighted and usually can expect to live a long time. On the other hand, if your cholesterol is high, you should start to worry because you are at increased risk for a heart attack and certain types of cancers and should start immediately on a diet that is low in saturated fat, partially hydrogenated oils and refined carbohydrates; and high in vegetables, such as the DASH diet.

    By Gabe Mirkin, M.D., for CBS Radio News
    Checked 12/09/03


    1) C Iribarren, DR Jacobs, ML Slattery, K Liu, S Sidney, BJ Hebert, JM Roseman. Epidemiology of low total plasma cholesterol concentration among young adults: The CARDIA study. Preventive Medicine 26: 4(JUL-AUG 1997):495-507.

    2) SJ Sharp, SJ Pocock. Time trends in serum cholesterol before cancer death. Epidemiology 8: 2 (MAR 1997):132-136.

    3) M Zureik, D Courbon, P Ducimetiere. Decline in serum total cholesterol and the risk of death from cancer. Epidemiology 8: 2 (MAR 1997):137-143.

    4) DB Shestov, AD Deev, AN Klimov, CE Davis, HA Tyroler. Circulation. 1993(Sept);88:3:846-853.

    5) Circulation September, 1992.

    6) Archives of Internal Medicine July, 1992.
    -------------

    http://www.indianexpress.com/full_story.php?content_id=42652
    "For your health, there’s nothing like too low cholesterol"
    NEW YORK, MARCH 9: Lowering cholesterol far beyond the levels recommended by most doctors can substantially reduce heart patients’ risk of suffering or dying of a heart attack, a study has found.

    The study’s results, cardiologists say, will greatly change how doctors treat patients with heart disease and will provide the impetus to re-evaluate how low cholesterol levels should be, even for people without heart problems.
    -------------

    http://www.cnn.com/2003/HEALTH/conditions/11/13/cholesterol.level.ap/
    Drug comparison study finds there's no such thing as 'too low'
    "There is no such thing as too low an LDL. That's what the data seem to show," said Dr. Steven Nissen of the Cleveland Clinic. He presented the results Wednesday at a meeting of the American Heart Association in Orlando.
    -------------

    http://www.ctv.ca/servlet/ArticleNews/story/CTVNews/1068729735894_59?s_name=&no_ads=
    Doctors have long debated how low people with heart trouble should drive down their cholesterol. Guidelines recommend getting LDL, the bad cholesterol, down to 100. But many have wondered whether lower is better.

    The latest study lowered that target to 80 and found the more rigorous treatment seemed to stop artery clogging in its tracks.

    "There is no such thing as too low an LDL. That's what the data seem to show," said Dr. Steven Nissen of the Cleveland Clinic. He presented the results Wednesday at a meeting of the American Heart Association in Orlando.
    -------------

    It would seem that there is some confusion concerning cause and affect when it comes to low-cholesterol and the disorders mentioned. Newer studies are showing that the disorder causes the low-cholesterol level and not the other way around. Additionally, low-cholesterol is quite normal for people who don't ingest cholesterol and the HDL will lower as levels of LDL drop, as was cited in the prior post.

    There is no dietary need for cholesterol, the body produces all the cholesterol it needs. It is only when the body fails to do this that it may indicate a hidden or emerging disorder. As the blood test I referred to was done a few years ago and I'm in better shape now than I was then and since my ingestion of cholesterol is near zero, it's not a cause for concern. It's actually a good thing placing my statistical chance of a heart attack at 4% or less verses 50% for those following a standard diet and displaying "normal" cholesterol levels.
     
  9. patch70

    patch70 New Member

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    I am still looking for the graph but I agree that cause & effect are likely to be very easily confused in such an assessment. It is very hard to imagine how low cholesterol leads to aggressive behaviour or suicide!

    I also agree that cholesterol intake is not essential but also I don't think cholesterol intake on its own is a major worry. If you eat extra, you make less. It is when you are eating too much in the way of saturated fats (& refined carbs) that you start to increase your cholesterol production and hence the level goes up. Alternatively, you may be unlucky enough to have a familial tendency to high cholesterol levels.

    Furthermore, cholesterol levels are not the only problem. As well as the HDL/LDL differentiation, there are other important lipids like triglycerides, intermediate density lipoprotein, apolipoprotein a, & lipoprotein a. Too many people get hung up on total cholesterol levels alone. Even if this is high (but not too high) and you are fit, a non-smoker, non-diabetic, and have reasonable blood pressure, your risk of cardiovascular disease is increased only marginally. Sure change your diet and make sure you are reducing any other risk factors. But if you put all >40 year olds with high cholesterol on a drug like atorvastatin or pravastatin, you would spend in excess of US$32,000 for each year of life saved.
     
  10. Beastt

    Beastt New Member

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    Indeed, as with any disease or disorder, prevention is far superior to treatment if the option exists. Obviously, there is insufficient information available to prevent all atherosclerotic disease but enough is known to substantially reduce the risk.

    Industries do exist which try to cloud the issues and are often more than minimally successful. The same techniques were utilized by the tobacco companies when smoking first became suspect and the industries marketing higher risk of heart disease have been no less successful, since their target mass is the vast majority of the public. It's always nicer to hear that those things you use, ingest and like are healthful than to find that they may well be leading you to an early death. So strong is the desire to defend current beliefs and traditions that lead to a substantially increased risk of heart disease, that much like Copernicus, Aristarchus and Galileo, anyone challenging current trends must be prepared to sustain ridicule and be labeled as a nut.

    When you find yourself on the side of the majority, it is time to pause and reflect." -- Mark Twain

    When you find yourself on the side of the majority, it is time to pause and reflect." -- Mark Twain

    When you find yourself on the side of the majority, it is time to pause and reflect." -- Mark Twain


    It's worth reading three times.

    :)
     
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