Dietary cholesterol

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Dietary cholesterol refers to the cholesterol found in foods of animal origin, including meat, seafood, poultry, eggs, and dairy products. Although the plant based foods, such as grains, vegetables, fruits, and oils do not contain dietary cholesterol, because of the role our liver plays in cholesterol production from glucose, which is stimulated by a hormone called insulin, the starchy plant based diets can indirectly lead to higher blood cholesterol through this mechanism called insulin resistance or metabolic syndrome.

HMG-CoA reductase pathway
HMG-CoA reductase pathway

Study:Dietary cholesterol may not raise cardiovascular risk

Although you have long heard that dietary cholesterol is generally not good for the cardiovascular health, you might be surprised to know that high quality, well conducted research studies have shown no relationship between dietary cholesterol and cardiovascular disease. Learn more on the high-quality research finds no link to heart disease.

No limit on dietary cholesterol intake - AHA

For a long time, the American Heart Association has recommended low fat, low cholesterol diet based on assumptions and wrongly interpreted observational studies. Now, the same organization agrees with the above research and says there is no numerical recommendation of cholesterol intake from food, as it finds no link between dietary cholesterol and cardiovascular risk.

Did the low cholesterol diet lead to high blood cholesterol indirectly?

If you think about how our body gets most of the cholesterol, it may be surprising to know that we get most of our cholesterol made in the liver and the stimulus for that process is the hormone insulin. When our diet went low fat, low cholesterol, it went high starch which in turn lead to enormous increase in insulin resistance. Since insulin promotes cholesterol production, the low cholesterol, low fat diet indirectly contributed to high cholesterol in the blood.

Sources of dietary cholesterol

Elevated cholesterol
Elevated cholesterol

Also see

Diet | Weight loss | Obesity | Metabolic syndrome | Glossary of dietary supplements

Changing dietary recommendations

Based on this and other data, specific dietary cholesterol target recommendations were removed in recent guidelines. It has raised questions about the role of dietary cholesterol with respect to cardiovascular disease. This advisory was developed after a review of human studies on the relationship of dietary cholesterol with blood lipids, lipoproteins, and cardiovascular disease risk to address questions about the relevance of dietary cholesterol guidance for heart health. Evidence from observational studies conducted in several countries generally does not indicate a significant association with cardiovascular disease risk. This is one of the reasons why the ketogenic diet is popular. Learn more...

Latest research - Dietary cholesterol

Clinical trials

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