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Out of Our Minds
Tuesday, March 08, 2005 8:25 AM
(Psst. Hot Tip. Buy Cheese)
Anita Sharpe on Health & Wellness

The drug companies are apparently in a mad dash to be the first to come up with a pill that will raise our good HDL cholesterol. 'The more of it the better: each point of increase in HDL has been found to reduce the risk of heart disease by 2 percent to 3 percent, a benefit more dramatic than the lowering of each point of LDL,' according to a story in today's Atlanta Journal-Constitution.

A year ago I conducted an experiment on myself (sort of my own version of Supersize Me.) I began adding a ton of high-fat dairy products to my diet -- real butter, several ounces of cheese a day, espresso with heavy cream. I did this for about three months and then had my cholesterol tested. My HDL soared to 96 from an already respectable 55 (the target is at least 40 for men and 50 or more for women.)

It's hardly scientific at this point, but if milk and cheese emerge as the new super-foods in a few years, remember you read it here first.


anita - 3/15/2005 8:30:30 AM
Derek -- I love the story about your grandfather. My grandmother, who died peacefully in her sleep at age 95, ate mountains of scrambled eggs in butter every day of her life and drank strong pots of real coffee all day -- usually finishing her last cup before going to bed at 1 a.m.
Derek W - 3/15/2005 2:48:33 AM
I've always liked the old foods. Fat milk, cheese, cottage cheese (the fat kind), butter, yogurt, eggs. I used to get frowns from the health food extremists, but most of this stuff turns out to be ok. Now I just have to wait for them to discover that bacon grease is a superfood. (My grandfather ate four eggs fried in bacon grease just about every day of his life.)
Pete Cito - 3/9/2005 6:48:07 AM
What's so surprising?

Why do we still think eating fat makes us fat? Saturated fat is needed for absorption of vitamins A, D, K and D (in the absence of sunlight). When 75% of the body's cholesterol is manufactured by the liver (in response to needs), why do we think eating cholesterol increases our cholesterol?

Butter etc. is what our ancestors thrived on when there was no such thing as heart disease and cancer. Now our lives are consumed (sic) with processed foods and we're starting to pay the price with disease.

If butter and cheese (milk is another story!) become the new superfoods remember you heard it not here but hundreds of years ago and chose to discount it in favour of contemporary marketing and poor clinical trials.

Good health to all!


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