Can Dietary Cholesterol Actually Protect Against Bad LDL?

by Colin Carmichael

We’ve known for decades now that dietary cholesterol should be avoided at all costs, right?

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Study suggests dietary cholesterol has benefits for artery health.

Well…

Not so fast my friend.

If you follow this site, you know that I’ve said for years that natural forms of dietary cholesterol are not the cause of cholesterol problems.

Never has been. Never will be.

Your body not only wants, but needs cholesterol. Has to have it to survive.

And consuming dietary cholesterol – from natural foods like eggs – isn’t a problem as far as excess cholesterol build-up in the bloodstream.

And it's definitely not a problem as far as promoting the oxidation of cholesterol or the inflammation of your arteries … and those are the two bugaboo’s to be worried about!

And now there's a new study suggesting that dietary cholesterol isn't just "not bad" for us, but may actually help protect us from atherosclerosis.

That's because there's evidence to support that dietary cholesterol increases PON1 enzyme activity.

What in the world is PON1?

PON1 (also known as Serum paraoxonase/arylesterase 1, aromatic esterase 1 or serum aryldialkylphosphatase 1) is one of three known paraoxonase enzymes.

Some great words for Scrabble for sure. But let's get to the part you going to like…

PON1 is one of the major reasons … perhaps the reason … why HDL is considered “good” cholesterol.

In fact, when PON1 is removed from high-density lipoprotein, the HDL loses most (possibly all?) of it’s artery-protecting goodness.

And again, what this study is showing is that dietary cholesterol increases PON1 enzyme activity.

Translation: It helps make your "good" cholesterol even better!

What Exactly Does PON1 Help Do?

PON1 has been shown to be extremely beneficial to arterial health in two ways…

  • It helps prevent the formation of oxidized LDL (Ox-LDL)
  • It assists in the removal of Ox-LDL lipids

Why is this so important?

Because it's oxidized LDL that is so harmful to our arteries and eventually leading to a negative effect on the heart.

You see, the idea that LDL is "bad" cholesterol is a misnomer. Regular LDL isn't bad for us. It's only the oxidized LDL that leads to plaque build-up and contributes to stiffer, less flexible blood vessels.

Study Not Definitive By Any Means

I do want to point out that these findings are not definitive as the data was accumulated from subjects completing a survey on their eating habits for the past year.

Surveys just can't be counted on as accurate or reliable data accumulation tools.

But here’s what really bothers me about this…

I've searched all day long to see who is reporting on this research.

I've yet to find one media outlet that is talking about this.

Meanwhile, earlier this week, literally hundredsif not thousands – of media jumped all over the study that tried to claim eggs are two-thirds as bad as smoking to our arteries.

It was on the front page of major news sites. Twitter was lit up with tweets about how we should go back to avoiding eggs.

And that study is absolute garbage. Leading people down the wrong path.

Meanwhile, this study lauding the benefits of dietary cholesterol is getting completely ignored. Swept under the rug.

I've yet to find one news source or one other blogger who's talking about this.

Why is that? Does scaring us unnecessarily simply make for "better news" and get more clicks?

Stick with us here and we'll give you the big picture on this stuff so you don't get hoodwinked.

References:
> Journal of Lipid Research. 2012 Aug 15
> Free Radical Biology & Medicine. 1999 Apr;26(7-8):892-904.
> http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/PON1
> http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Paraoxonase


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