It is interesting to note that modern-day diets high in hydrogenated vegetable oils instead of traditional animal fats are blamed for causing a significant increase in heart disease and cancer.
A young researcher from Russia, named David Kritchevsky, published a paper in 1954 showing the effects of feeding cholesterol to rabbits. This caused the formation of atheromas. Atheromas are plaques that block arteries that lead to heart disease. Cholesterol is a heavyweight molecule. It is actually an alcohol or a sterol which are found only in animal foods such as meat, cheese, eggs and butter.
Kritchevsky also published a paper describing the beneficial effects of polyunsaturated fatty acids for lowering cholesterol levels. Polyunsaturated fatty acids are the fats found in vegetable oils made from corn, soybeans, safflower seeds and sunflower seeds.
Please view this video on cholesterol saturated fats to better understand the subject on fats.
Truth about Fat, Trans Fat, Saturated Fat & Nutrition
Monounsaturated fatty acids are found in large amounts in olive oil, palm oil and lard. Whereas, saturated fatty acids are found in fats and oils that are solid at room temperature,like butter, tallow and coconut oil.
Cholesterol fats continues...In 1950, coronary heart disease "CHD" was the leading cause of death in the United States, accounting more than 30 per cent of all deaths.
The biggest increase came from myocardial infarction "MI". This is a massive blood clot leading to obstruction of a coronary artery and consequent death to the heart muscle. But, "MI" was almost unheard of in 1910 and caused less than 3,000 deaths per year in 1930. By 1960, there were at least 500,000 "MI" deaths per year in the US.
What lifestyle changes had caused this increase?
One change was a decrease in infectious disease. The other was a dietary change.
In the begining of the century, the US Department of Agriculture (USDA) had started keeping record of food 'disappearance' data. They noticed a change in the kind of fats Americans were eating.
Butter consumption was declining, people were eating less butter. But, the use of vegetable oils, especially oils that had been hardened to resemble butter by a process called 'hydrogenation', was increasing fast.
By 1950, butter consumption had dropped from 18 pounds per person per year to just over 10 pounds. Margarine consumption was rising from about two pounds per person at the turn of the century to about eight. Consumption of vegetable shortening, used in crackers and baked goods , remained relatively steady at about 12 pounds per person per year. But vegetable oil consumption had more than tripled from just under three pounds per person per year to more than 10 pounds.
The statistics showed us one obvious conclusion
Nutrition Facts Labels, How to Read, FAQ, About Part 1 Americans should eat the traditional foods, that include meat, eggs, butter and cheese that nourished their ancestors. They should avoid the newfangled, vegetable-oil-based foods that were flooding the grocers' shelves.
The Kritchevsky articles draw immediate attention because it lent support against the consumption of meat and dairy products.
The lipid hypothesis - Ancel Keys
It stated, that saturated fat and cholesterol from animal sources raise cholesterol levels in the blood, leading to deposition of cholesterol and fatty material as pathogenic plaques in the arteries.
This hypothesis was proven wrong and is a myth. But the damaged was done and now most people still believe in it! How sad!!
Nutrition Facts Labels, How to Read, FAQ, About Part 1
Kritchevsky's rabbit trials were actually a repeat of studies carried out forty years earlier in St Petersburg, in which rabbits that were fed saturated fats and cholesterol developed fatty deposits in their skin and other tissues, and in their arteries.
By demonstrating that polyunsaturated oils from vegetable sources lowered serum cholesterol at least temporarily in humans, Kritchevsky appeared to show that the findings from the animal trials were relevant to the "CHD" problem. That the lipid hypothesis was a valid explanation for the new epidemic, and by reducing animal products in their diets, Americans could avoid heart disease. This was proven wrong but most people still believe in it. How very sad!
However, after many years, a number of population studies showed that the animal model, especially the one derived from vegetarian animals, was not a valid approach for the problem of heart disease in human.
In the 1955 report on artery plaques in soldiers killed during the Korean War showed little difference in the number and severity of plaques between American soldiers and those of the Japanese natives. It was 75 per cent versus 65 per cent, even though the Japanese diet was lower in animal products and fat.
A 1957 study of the largely vegetarian Bantu found that they had as much atheroma, or plaque build-up in the arteries, as other races from South Africa who ate more meat.
A 1958 report noted that Jamaican Blacks showed a degree of atherosclerosis comparable to that found in the United States, although they suffered from lower rates of heart disease.
In a 1960 report noted that the severity of atherosclerotic lesions in Japan approached that of the United States.
In the 1968 International Atherosclerosis Project, in which over 22,000 corpses in 14 nations were cut open and examined for plaques in the arteries, showed the same degree of atheroma in all parts of the world. In populations that suffered from a great deal of heart disease, and in populations that had very little or none at all.
All these studies pointed to the fact that the thickening of the arterial walls is a natural, unavoidable process. The lipid hypothesis is not true to these population studies, nor did it explain the tendency toward fatal clots that caused myocardial infarction.
In 1956, an American Heart Association (AHA) fund-raiser was aired on all three major networks. The Master of Ceremonies interviewed, among others, Irving Page and Jeremiah Stamler of the AHA and researcher Ancel Keys.
Panellists presented the lipid hypothesis as the cause of the heart disease epidemic and launched the Prudent Diet, one in which corn oil, margarine, chicken and cold cereal replaced butter, lard, beef and eggs.
The television campaign was not an unqualified success because one of the panellists, Dr Dudley White, disputed his colleagues at the AHA. Dr White noted that heart disease in the form of myocardial infarction was non-existent in 1900 when egg consumption was three times what it was in 1956 and when corn oil was unavailable.
When pressed to support the Prudent Diet, Dr White replied:
"See here, I began my practice as a cardiologist in 1921 and I never saw an MI patent until 1928. Back in the MI-free days before 1920 the fats were butter and lard, and I think that we would all benefit from the kind of diet that we had at a time when no one had ever heard the word 'corn' oil."
But the lipid hypothesis had already gained enough momentum to keep it rolling, in spite of Dr White's nationally televised plea for common sense in matters of diet and in spite of the contradictory studies that were showing up in the scientific literature.
Now you know the reason why, at least one of the reasons and a valid one, is that Americans are dying like flies not only of heart attacks but cancers and other major diseases, since the introduction of the modern diets.
Wise up or you will be other than wise! Make a diertary change in youe life, throw away all the trans fats and hydrogenated oil in the house and follow what your ancestors ate in their life time and you will be better off. Tell that to your good friends and love ones. You may save them lots of heart breaks and suffering!