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Changes to Dietary Guidelines: Is Cholesterol Really Bad for Your Heart?

  • February 4, 2015

For more than 50 years, cholesterol has been publicized as one of the most serious health hazards, particularly when it comes to heart problems. In fact, dietary cholesterol has been touted as a deadly threat that must be avoided at all costs, but that may be about to change. The 2015 edition of Dietary Guidelines for Americans is likely to see the removal of cholesterol limitations, and for a very good reason.

Understanding Cholesterol in Your Body

Unprocessed cholesterol is an integral component of a healthy diet. Its molecules aid in the development of healthy cells and vitamin D, as well as optimal brain function. Low HDL levels have been correlated with brain problems like depression, Alzheimer’s disease, and memory loss. Americans have been warned to eliminate excess cholesterol from their diets, almost entirely without justification or clarification as to why.

A draft of the new guidelines states that “cholesterol is not considered a nutrient of concern for overconsumption.” Though blood cholesterol remains a primary concern regarding heart health and overall physical well-being, the cholesterol we consume in food plays a surprisingly insignificant role. It is still important to bear in mind that processed saturated fat and cholesterol that has been heated can still lead to the creation of hazardous materials in the body, a problem that is linked to cardiovascular disease.

This major shift in scientific attitude toward dietary cholesterol should not be taken to mean that Americans now have free license to eat anything and everything they desire without fear of the consequences. It simply means that we must begin to take a more comprehensive approach to planning our diets. Eating “real” food, or as much natural food as possible, will actively reduce your risk of heart disease and other health conditions associated with high blood cholesterol. Essentially, the more unadulterated your food choices are, the healthier you will be now and in the future.

Nutritional Therapy in Collegeville & Williamsport

At LANAP & Implant Center of Pennsylvania, Dr. David DiGiallorenzo offers a full range of total body wellness solutions, including nutritional therapy. With our team’s help, you and your family can enjoy healthy, happy lives free of worry about heart disease, dementia, and more. Contact us today to learn more about “good” cholesterol, as well as the ways you can improve your overall health with a better diet. Our practice warmly welcomes patients from throughout Pennsylvania, including communities in Sunbury, Bloomberg, Collegeville, Pottstown, Williamsport, Lock Haven, and beyond.