In episode 74 of his video series, Dr. Larson discusses:
The medical literature tells us that when there is an increase in saturated fats in the plasma, it increases a person’s risk for heart disease and diabetes. The medical literature also tells us that dietary saturated fats don’t increase a person’s risk for heart disease and diabetes, which is completely contradictory to what you would assume.
The more carbohydrates someone consumed, the higher their risk increased for type two diabetes and heart disease. DR. CHAD LARSON
A study recently published in the journal PLOS ONE sought to help understand the opposition in the medical literature to explain what the difference is and what we need to do to decrease the level of saturated fats in plasma. Although we do know that an increase in saturated fats in the plasma increases your risk for heart disease and diabetes, the leap to blaming dietary saturated fats is simply unfounded.
Dietary saturated fats do not cause an increase in plasma saturated fats on a fasting test, meaning that a person hasn’t eaten for 12 hours in a fasted state. Even if a person is eating dietary saturated fat, it does not increase plasma levels of saturated fat. Research released in PLOS ONE set out to investigate if the saturated fat in plasma isn’t coming from dietary saturated fat, then where is it coming from?
Researchers took adult subjects that were not just randomly drawn, they had to have been diagnosed with metabolic syndrome. Metabolic syndrome is when a person has at least three of five things, a waistline that is above 40 inches for men or 35 for women, an elevated blood pressure or taking hypertensive medicine, elevated triglyceride levels above 150, an elevated blood sugar level above 100, or HDL levels that are below 40. Having three or more of those conditions classifies you as having metabolic syndrome.
The researchers did a 21-week study where there were six dietary changes. In six increments they decreased the amount of carbohydrates that the participant consumed and increased their saturated fat intake. What they found was that as carbohydrates were elevated and saturated fats were lowered, the amount of saturated fats in the plasma increased.
The more carbohydrates a person consumed; the higher their level of saturated fats in the plasma was. The more carbohydrates someone consumed, the higher their risk increased for type two diabetes and heart disease.
The reason is that when the liver is inundated with an abundance of carbohydrates it is converted to glucose. But, when that glucose can’t be used by the body anymore, it is packaged into triglycerides. That makes the fatty acids in plasma increase and increases your risk for heart disease and diabetes.
The solution is to bring down your carbohydrate intake and increase your fat consumption. It is really as simple as that. Saturated fats are not the enemy; excessive carbohydrates are.