Tuesday, February 22, 2022

Best diet to improve cardiovascular health


The debate appears to be going on and on. Diets heavy in fat and low in carbohydrates, according to proponents of a low-fat approach, are bad for the heart. On the surface, this seems to be the case. But is this the case?

In a recently published clinical investigation, an expert in heart and metabolic health came to some startling and fascinating discoveries. The participants were assigned to one of three groups in this study. For the next 20 weeks, they strictly adhered to the diets prescribed to them. Each of the three diets had 20% protein, but the carbohydrate and fat content varied.

In the cafeteria or on the move, participants got completely cooked, tailored meals. So there was no ambiguity as to whether or not they really ate the macronutrients given to them.

The following is a breakdown of the diets:

A low-carbohydrate diet has no more than 80% carbohydrates and 21% fat.

This is a moderate-carb diet: 40% carbs, 14% fat.

60 percent carbohydrate, 7 percent fatty acids.

These were the startling findings at the conclusion of the 20-week study:

"Improved insulin-resistant dyslipoproteinemia and lipoprotein(a) levels were found with an all-saturated fat, low-carb diet, while LDL cholesterol levels remained unchanged. Cardiovascular disease risk may be reduced by restricting carbohydrates, regardless of body weight, and this should be studied in massive multi-center studies driven by concrete outcomes."

Those who followed a low-carb, high-fat diet saw better results in triglycerides, adiponectin (a fat-derived hormone that appears to play a crucial role in protecting against insulin resistance/diabetes and atherosclerosis), blood pressure, and lipoprotein(a) than those who followed a medium- or high-carb diet, according to the researchers. LDL cholesterol may develop plaques on blood vessel walls as a result of lipoprotein(a), a protein that carries cholesterol and can induce constriction or blockage of blood vessels and hardening of arteries. Cardiovascular indicators were unaffected by the high levels of saturated fat.

That contradicts everything we've been taught for decades. The quality of the meal and the source of the fat are, in my view, the most important considerations. Saturated fat isn't as harmful as we've been led to believe. For me, it's a toss-up between what kind of fat you consume and how your body reacts to saturated fats.

Is a low-carb, high-saturated fat diet something you'd consider?

She is a holistic health coach and an independent nutritionist. She aids her clients in achieving robust health and wholeness - spirit, soul, and body - via her coaching services.

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