Fats and Heart Disease – By Dr. Holly

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Dr. Holly
Dr. Holly

Whether you are celebrating a romantic relationship with someone else or you are celebrating unconditional love and acceptance of the self. Both are important to life. Actually the later is much more important than the former. But if you have established the later – that is phenomenal. If then you decided to engage in the former – you have someone to celebrate Valentine’s Day with. That can be fun.

But what are we celebrating – the heart. Do you know how we came up with the heart shape used on Valentine’s Day to represent romantic love? It certainly in now way resembles the actual heart. Did you know that St. Valentine created the heart shape as the symbol of romantic love because he saw the energy around a couple “in love” and the energy he saw formed that shape that we all now associate with Valentine’s Day and the heart.

I think we can all agree that the heart is a very important organ in the body. When it crashes, so do we. So we want to take good care of that precious organ.

During the last 50 years or so, the medical profession has taught us how bad fats are for the heart. But like so many concepts and theories the medical profession has taught us, this one was also wrong.

Fats are incredibly important for the heart. But like most things in life, we need to make sure that they are the good healthy fats!! So what kind of fats are there? Let’s look at the basics:

heart
Bad fats include the Transfats:

They are typically the by-product of the hydrogenation process. The heating process uses hydrogen and a heavy metal catalyst to turn good healthy oils into solids in an attempt to prevent them from going rancid.

Examples are: margarine (which was designed to make cattle fatter, faster and as many are already aware, is only one carbon away from plastic)

Uses include: pastries, fast foods, French fries

Problems:

  • Increases unnatural LDL in the bloodstream and reduces the HDL
  • Increases inflammation: vascular issues, strokes and heart disease
  • Increases diabetes: and other chronic conditions

Mediocre fats:

Saturated fats are usually solid at room temperature.

Sources are: fats found in red meat, whole milk and other diary products including cheese; also coconut

Uses include: dairy products and pastries

Myths: the old belief that saturated fats cause heart disease has now been recognized as false. There is not evidence to conclude that saturated fats cause heart disease.

Good fats: Good fats come from seeds, nuts and fish. They have fewer hydrogen atoms bonded to their carbon chains. There are two primary groups:

Monounsaturated fats: fats with single double bonds; turn to solids when cold

Polyunsaturated fats: have two or more double carbon bonds. Includes both Omega 3s and Omega 6s

Monounsaturated Fats:

Benefits: decreased risk for breast cancer, heart disease and strokes; reduced cholesterol levels; less pain and inflammation; reduced belly fat

Sources: almonds, avocados, cashews, macadamia nuts, pecans

Polyunsaturated Fats:

Benefits of Omega 3s: reduce heart disease & heart attacks; prevents blood clotting and strokes; prevents fatty deposits; fibrosis in the arteries; normalizes cholesterols; reduces liver enzymes that causes fatty liver issues; hugely benefits brain development and function; prevents osteoporosis, cancers, arthritic conditions and autoimmune disorders

Sources for Omega 3s are:

  • fatty fish (salmon, mackerel, sardines) and krill;
  • fruit: avocados
  • lentils: beans, pinto, kidney,
  • nuts: walnuts, almonds
  • oils: avocado, cod liver oil, (Note: I no longer put Olive Oil in the group)
  • seeds: ground flax seeds, hemp seeds, salba/chia seeds
  • vegetables: alfalfa seeds, butterhead lettuce, Chinese broccoli, grape leaves, radish seeds,

Uses for Omega 3s: anti-inflammatories, transport mechanisms,

Benefits for Omega 6s are:

Although we need a lot less Omega 6s than Omega 3s, we still need them. The Western diet is high in Omega 6s, so we rarely find a deficiency.

Omega 6 in the form of linoleic acid (LA) is important in cell growth, brain and muscle development; inflammatory processes that the body goes through before the anti-inflammatory processes start; hormone like messengers; reduction of fluid retention; prevention of MS; schizophrenia; and various brain disorders; blood thinning; central nervous system

Sources for Omega 6s are:

  • Fruit: avocados
  • Grains: cereals, bread, durum wheat (whole grain and sprouted breads are the best)
  • Nuts:
  • Poultry: eggs, chicken
  • Vegetable oils

In consideration of the fact that this is Valentine’s month, let’s look at Chocolate. Historically called the Food of the Gods. 100% REAL chocolate has the following benefits:

  • The 54% cocoa butter contains healthy fats for the heart
    1. 34% oleic acid (supercharges muscles & brain by making myelin thus protecting against MS, cognitive function, ALD, vision, balance issues, chronic pain, etc); restores fuel metabolism in failing hearts;
    2. 33% stearic acid (great for hair, nails and skin)
    3. 26% palmitic acid (saturated fatty acid that has anti-oxidant and anti-atherosclerotic properties)
    4. 6% other
  • Protects against the oxidizing of LDL (that is when LDL becomes bad)
  • Lowers LDL
  • Reduces the risk of cardiovascular disease
  • Lowers the risk of calcified plaque in the arteries
  • Improves blood flow and circulation
  • Increases Nitric oxide (with arginine) – necessary for the vasodilation
  • Lowers blood pressure
  • Great alkalizing minerals for the heart
  • Great anti-oxidants for the heart (flavonoids)
  • Great fats for the heart
  • Great for the endorphins that get the heart pumping!!!

Here’s to your health!
For more information, contact: Dr Holly at holly@choicesunlimited.ca
Copyright 2015 © Choices Unlimited for Health & Wellness
Disclaimer: This article is provided for general information only, and is not a substitute for the medical advice of your own doctor or other health care professional. Asian Journal is not responsible or liable for any diagnosis made by a reader. We are not liable for the contents of any external internet sites listed, nor does SW Media Group endorse any commercial product or service mentioned or advised on any of such sites. Always consult your own health care practitioner.