For many years, you’ve seen the ads for foods boasting “no cholesterol” or “lower in saturated fat”. This caused about 80% of Americans to switch to margarine, as the expense of their health. Margarine doesn’t taste as good as butter, but the American Heart Association says that margarine is better for your heart. Margarine is a processed food. Butter is not. Let’s clear up this confusion.
WHAT IS CHOLESTEROL?
Cholesterol is a soft, waxy substance in the lipid (fat). It is transferred through the bloodstream and into all of your body’s cells. It is important because it is used to form cell membranes, most hormones and is needed for systemic function. If there is too much cholesterol in the bloodstream, it will try to find somewhere to live. This can result in a build up plaque in the arteries. Cholesterol is made in the liver, depending on our bodies need. If we have too much cholesterol in our body, the liver tries to store it. When it becomes overcrowded, the liver will package it up as LDL’s and send it out to where —- our thighs, buttocks, abdomen and finally, arteries.
WHAT IS HDL CHOLESTEROL?
About 1/3 to 1/4 to of blood cholesterol is carried by the HDL. HDL stands for high-density lipoprotein. You want a higher amount of HDL’s in your blood because they are carrying cholesterol away from the arteries and back to the liver, where it is detoxified and finally taken out of the body. It is believed by some experts that HDL will actually break down plaque that LDL has made. You want your HDL levels to be less than 200mg/dL. Race is a factor in determining appropriate cholesterol levels.
WHAT IS LDL CHOLESTEROL?
Low density lipoprotein is a major cholesterol found in the blood. If too much LDL cholesterol circulates in the blood, it can slowly build up in the walls of arteries feeding the brain and the heart. When the liver cannot store any more fat, it will package it up as cholesterol and send it back into the bloodstream. Along with other substances, it can build up plaque known as atherosclerosis. A clot (thrombosis) can now form and block the blood flow to the heart muscle. A heart attack can result. The amount of LDL cholesterol in the blood should be less than 100 mg/dL. It is known as the “bad cholesterol”.
WHAT ARE TRIGLYCERIDES?
Triglycerides are a fat found in VLDL (very low density lipoproteins). They produce twice (2x) as much energy as carbohydrates and proteins. They are made of glycerol and three fatty acids. They are transporter of dietary fat and therefore, we want a higher amount in the blood, just like HDL. It is stored in the fat and liver and when fatty acids are needed for energy, glucagon signals the breakdown of these fatty acids. Levels in the blood stream should stay below 150 mg/dL.
“TRANS” Means Trouble
Trans fatty acids are not restricted to margarine. They are found in shortening, crackers, cookies, pastries, cakes, chips, imitation cheese, candies, fried food and sodas. Any food that’s made with partially hydrogenated vegetable oils are trans-fats.
The process of hydrogenation involves exposing liquid oil or soft fat to a high temperature, placing it under pressure, and then bubbling the hydrogen through the oil.
This is the practical way to harden liquid polyunsaturated oil for commercial use. Not only will this produce a firmer texture for a muffin, but hydrogenating oils keeps the products on the shelves longer. When a product can stay on the shelf for six (6) month, like Chips-Ahoy Cookies and Health Valley’s Fat-Free Jumbo Fruit Cookies, maybe it’s better not to eat it at all.
Tampering with nature is never positive. Hydrogenation acts somewhat like a chemical hair straightener, turning unsaturated fatty acids into straight trans fatty acids. It is these man-made trans fatty acids that are bad, maybe even worse than natural saturated animal fats.
The harmful affect of trans-fatty acids are not a new discovery. In the 1950’s, scientists in the U.S., Canada, and Europe showed that trans fats fed to laboratory animals produced the following results:
Adversely affected the immune system.
Increased free-radical production.
Produced abnormal sperm and lower testosterone levels in rats.
Impaired the ability of red blood cells in monkeys to process insulin.
BLACK CURRENT SEED @ HDL’s and LDL’s
LDL stands for low-density lipoprotein. You want a lower amount of LDL’s in your blood because they are not doing much to remove fats from your blood. You want higher HDL’s because they are taking cholesterol to the liver for detoxification and removal.
Black Current Seed oil is known to raise HDL’s and lower LDL’s. As a bonus, triglycerides also decrease. Black Current Seed only is high in linoleic acid. Linoleic acid is one of the two essential fatty acids that you cannot manufacture yourself. Ah ha, linoleic acid is OMEGA 6.
Some other benefits of Black Current Seed oil are:
a.Reduces platelet aggregation ( it prevents cells from sticking together, which causes processes leading to heart disease}
b.Helps to prevent hypertension by sodium excess
c.Helps to normalize lesions occurring from obesity and diabetes
d. It is ecologically friendly because it is made from grape seed after the wine pressing.
Grapeseed oil is also hight in Omega-6 and is available for all forms of cooking and is ideal for salad dressings and mayonnaise. It has no fatty after taste and brings out the flavor of food. It has a non-greasy, slightly nutty flavor and will not cloud when chilled.
When used for regular or deep frying at normal temperatures, it’s unusually high smoke point, over 485 degrees F, means no smoking, splattering or burnt taste. Best of all, there is no conversion to the harmful trans-fatty acids.
Grapeseed oil is naturally high in Vitamin E, with the maximum amount achieved when it is raw. The presence of Vitamin E also gives grapeseed oil a naturally long lasting shelf life of up to and possibly over 2 years.
Avoid processed foods. Be aware of food labels. “low saturated fat” and “cholesterol free” labels may also contain tran fatty acids.