This week we have the pleasure of hearing from Dr. Jonny Bowden.
Jonny is the author/creator of at least:
- The Great Cholesterol Myth
- Unleash Your Thin
- Living Low Carb
- The 150 Healthiest Foods on Earth
- The 150 Healthiest 15-Minute Recipes on Earth
- The 150 Healthiest Slow Cooker Recipes on Earth
- Jonny Bowden’s Shape Up!
- The 150 Healthiest Comfort Foods on Earth
- The 100 Healthiest Foods for Pregnancy
- The Most Effective Natural Cures on Earth
- The Healthiest Meals on Earth
- The 150 Most Effective Ways to Boost Your Energy
- The Most Effective Ways to Live Longer
The Slim Is Simple.org Non-Profit Nutrition Education Effort
Jonathan: Hey everyone, Jonathan Bailor here. This is, this is got to be, this is a special day because we have with us, literally one of the leaders in the field of fitness and nutrition, an individual who has been just all over the place, myth busting like it was going out of style and the author of many, many books. The most recent of which is The Great Cholesterol Myth.
In fact, you may have seen him talk about on the Dr. Oz show. He is the proprietor of a giveaway who is here with the website name of jonnybowden.com and he just released a new fat loss program called Unleash your Sin. Folks, we are joined by none other than the Dr. Jonny Bowden today. Jonny, welcome to the show!
Dr. Jonny: Thank you Jonathan, I’m embarrassed with that beautiful introduction but, thank you so much. It’s great to be here!
Jonathan: Well, brother, it’s so wonderful to have you.
Dr. Jonny: Thanks man…
Jonathan: I so appreciate that you have been fearless in your crusade to, to bust up some of the myths out there, and I can’t imagine…
Dr. Jonny: To wipe out the American Diabetic Association. Is that what you’re going to say?
Jonathan: Well that’s, I mean certainly, there’s so much we could cover today but one thing I wanted to get started with was, was your story because, certainly there had to have been some adversity along the way because really, you don’t pull any punches brother, you’re coming out there with the Science and telling it like it is. Tell us your story.
Dr. Jonny: Well, in terms of how I got into this field, and or how I became a disbeliever in the conventional wisdom about fat and cholesterol and that, which part of it would you like to hear?
Jonathan: Let’s do, let’s start how about you got into the field and how that lead you to your myth busting of the fat and cholesterol model of today?
Dr. Jonny: Well, I started out health and fitness was a career, change for me. I was a professional musician in the 80s, 70s and 80s and I changed careers in 1990 and became a personal trainer. I had my own health challenges. They’re pretty well known, I’ve written about them, fighting addictions and sex, drugs and rock and roll. I grew up in the 60s and it was my idea of a healthy breakfast was an aspirin and a cigarette and a couple cups of coffee.
I was touring with a lot of different musical things and Broadway shows. I began to kind of take my health under my own wings, if you will, somewhere in the late 80s and started hanging out with the actress I was working with and starting to go to the gym and started actually seeing the improvements in my own life, my energy, all those other things and I decided that I wanted to do something in this field. I became a personal trainer and I kind of switched to careers late 80s, early 90s and began working at the Equinox Fitness Clubs in New York when they first opened their doors.
Of course, now they’re one of the most successful clubs in America. I was pretty much a true believer in the low fat diet and aerobic exercise and all of the things that we were taught as personal trainers. I was one of those guys who sent the eggs back up and had even a drop of yolk in it because God no, if we ate any of that cholesterol and fat, we were going to get a heart attack and put on all this weight.
I was a true believer in all of that and in the early 90s, I was lucky enough to cross paths with the great Barry Cirrus who is the author of the Zone Book. It’s very famous biochemistry MIT who wrote Into The Zone, and all the subsequent folks in that series and Barry had, at the time, rather a revolutionary idea which is, that we needed to eat more fat. It’s hard to imagine how revolutionary that was at the time. We were all on this high carb, low fat diet.
We all believed it was just the matter of doing more exercise if you are fat, you just needed to get on the treadmill and eat less calories. That’s still the wisdom today, or the conventional wisdom today, which is anything but wise, as we’ll talk about, I’m sure, in a moment. What I noticed, I remember saying to Barry that if you were right about all this, then everybody else is wrong and he said, “Exactly!”
Dr. Jonny: That was the beginning of the myth busting stuff and I looked at a lot of the clients I was working with and as you know, when people come to the gym, the number one reason is to lose weight, look better, sad but true. Very few people come in and go, you know what, I’ve got to get my butt in this gym and lower my triglycerides. That just doesn’t happen.
Jonathan: That would be a pretty awesome treadmill. It will actually monitor you triglycerides level while you’re going…
Dr. Jonny: Exactly! Exactly. Truth be told, most people do come to the gym for weight loss and for looking better and things like that. I, like many other trainers at the time, had clients who were very heavy and they were doing all the right things Jonathan. They were eating that low fat diet, they were eating the healthy breakfast, special canned orange juice, toast and a bagel, skimmed milk and a banana and all that stuff and they’d be on that treadmill.
We’ve all seen people like this at the gym and they just take on their walking, and their running and they look joyless and unhappy and they’re just putting in their time and nothing happens. We had people like that and I had a number of clients at this time in the early 90s who, against all my better advice decided to go on this caca-mimi Atkins diet. I thought “Oh my God, you can’t do that!” That’s all saturated fat and animal products and pork loins and these guys are going to get a heart attack, you’re going to die.
They would do this and they would come back and they had lost weight. We were reluctantly beginning to accept that maybe you could lose weight on that Atkins diet or one of these high protein, high fat, low carb diet but that’s, it couldn’t be healthy. You will definitely going to have all kinds of problems with your cholesterol and your blood pressure and your H2O just every other measure you could imagine, except they won. They were coming back, not only losing weight but with better energy, lower blood pressure and improved life.
In many of the cases, their doctors would look and go “What are you doing? This is terrific Mrs. Jones,” and he said, “Wow, are you on an Atkins diet?” “Oh you don’t need to be on that diet, it will kill you!” They just couldn’t believe the evidence of their own senses and look, I’m not a press advertiser of the Atkins diet but I’m, what I’m trying to illustrate here is that a lot of the information we had been taught as personal trainers, which came directly from the American Dietetic Association, considered to be the most structured organization in America, when it comes to the health of America but we learned the same things like everybody else did.
We just couldn’t wrap our minds around how could this be true. How could you be healthier, lose weight and follow these recommendations that flew in the face of everything we had learned about what was healthy food. I decided to do a little investigation. I went back to school, ultimately, getting a PhD in Nutrition and becoming board certified by the American College of Nutrition, certifying board of Nutrition Specialists and I kind of devoted myself full time to nutrition and have been doing so ever since. By the time I was done with my foray into this material, I was pretty convinced that we have been misled about what a healthy diet looks like, about what we were avoiding in our diet and why, about the consequences of eating higher fat, higher protein, about the consequences of eating a high carb diets. I was pretty much convinced that we had really, have been, I don’t want to say sold bad goods but certainly misled and that’s the conventional wisdom was anything but wise.
That’s kind of where I got the moniker, the word nutrition is because I’ve been speaking truths to power ever since and kind of busting myths. Believe me Jonathan, there are a lot of myths out there when it comes to diet, heart disease, diabetes, obesity, cholesterol, saturated fat and all of the rest of stuff that I’ve been railing about for the past 22 years. That’s pretty much my story and how I came to be doing what I am doing now and you mentioned earlier, my latest book which is called the Great Cholesterol Myth.
While lowering cholesterol will not prevent heart disease and the [Inaudible 0:09:03], there’s really a direct line from my experience back there in the 90s to this book and…
Jonathan: Jonny, let me just pause for one second before we jump into that book because I really want to focus on that. I think that can really impact the lives of our listeners just immediately when they get that information but one question I wanted to ask you about your experience in this field, and seeing the difference between what actually works and what we’re told works. Jonny, why, this going to sound like a funny statement to make, why don’t results speak for themselves both in terms of the fact that if a low fat, low, basically low everything other that starch diet worked, we wouldn’t see sky rocketing rates of obesity, cardiovascular disease and everything else that could go wrong with the human body?
Why don’t results speak for themselves when individuals take in more actually balanced approach, taking in more fat, taking in more proteins and taking in reduced amount of carbohydrates and they consistently see better results? Why aren’t those results enough to convince the powers that be that we need to change?
Dr. Jonny: This is interesting. I think you — I don’t know if you mentioned this in the introduction, but my original career path was to become a psychologist and I, I have a Masters in Psychology so I do a lot of reading outside my field, outside the field of nutrition and health. I read a lot about neuro-economics, why people make decisions, how ideas get you know [Inaudible 0:10:38], how do ideas get currency, how we do we start to believe certain things. I think that the answer to your question doesn’t really lie in nutrition, it lies in the Psychology of belief. We build a paradigm and that paradigm says fat is bad, fat causes heart diseases, cholesterol is bad, and then what we basically do is we look around us and we fit what we see, we fit the evidence of what we see into that paradigm.
Dr. Jonny: So for example, you may remember, people may remember something called the French Paradox and the French Paradox is what we were all taught in nutrition school, in the beginning it was that, here’s the French and they’re eating all this green cheese, and they’re eating all this [Inaudible 0:11:25] all this fatty stuff, and they don’t have heart disease because this is no longer true. They have now imported McDonald’s and all of the American foods over there now, so they have sky rocketing rates of heart disease. It’s the time of — I was in school, we knew this is the French paradox.
How can it be that they’re eating all this stuff and they’re not having a heart disease? Well, the reason we saw it as a paradox is because we couldn’t adjust our belief system that those things were bad. If saturated fat doesn’t cause heart disease, if cholesterol doesn’t cause heart disease, there’s no paradox to them eating a lot of it and not having heart disease. It’s only a paradox if you’re stuck in the belief system. So, you know the answer to your question why do we look around and see the results and change our beliefs.
People just don’t do that! Watch the politic shows, watch the US Congress. You get embedded into a belief system and then that gets supported with an entire economic infrastructure. Look at the, amount of money that’s made in cholesterol lowering medications, $31 billion a year for the two top manufacturers of the two top selling cholesterol lowering medications which is Zocor and Lipitor, $31 billion a year. Do you think you can just change this stuff around overnight? It will feel like just saying Eecon, “Hey you guys, we’ve just discovered global warming and you have a lot to do with it.”
Not so fast. The studies, it’s not just something that you can just change around that quickly. I was, I was talking at another interview show about how Science actually moves and I was telling the story about, back in the 1700s, you probably heard, everybody who’s listened to this have heard the expression llamies about English people, how that they came about. Llamies, do you know how that came about?
Jonathan: Oh go ahead, explain.
Dr. Jonny: Capt. John Smith was one of the explorers in the English Navy back in the 1700s, he would take these ships out to the sea and half the sailors would come back dead, and they didn’t know why. They didn’t know what was scurvy was at that time but they knew that they were losing an awful lot of the sailors. Somehow, coincidently, they started putting some limes and lemons into the food supply and all the suddenly, the soldiers aren’t coming back dead.
Well, what happened was that they were now getting Vitamin C and so they weren’t dying of scurvy. Well, that was a pretty obvious thing to see. Do you know how long it took England to put up Vitamin C on the [Inaudible 0:13:49] a copy where they actually said yes, we need Vitamin C, it prevent scurvy, 50 years!
Jonathan: Oh wow.
Dr. Jonny: That seems to be about the length of time it takes for new information to be accepted and, and to be… It doesn’t really happened very quickly and I think that’s a part of why we haven’t seen everybody just say “Hey, you know what, this thing is getting worse, let’s change direction.” It becomes a lot more complicated.
Jonathan: Well, I love what you said Dr. Jonny about this. This unfortunate but relatively common human behavior, which is, we don’t seek the evidence and then decide, we often decide and then seek the evidence.
Dr. Jonny: You know what it’s called in neuro-economics, in psychology “confirmation bias.” It means, you already have a, you have a bias to what’s the truth and then you look around you and you see a confirmation of that and that’s pretty much what we do here.
Jonathan: Well, Dr. Jonny, one thing I want to start talking about the new book and the way I want to kick that off is potentially, an example of this and an example of an individual being confronted with facts and cognitive dissonance that may correspond with their training. I have a lot of respect for Dr. Oz. I think he has the best intentions in the world…
Dr. Jonny: So am I.
Jonathan: I believe he is just trying to make the world a healthier place and frankly, I believe if the average American did what Dr. Oz said versus what they are currently doing, they probably would be healthier.
Dr. Jonny: Absolutely.
Jonathan: That said, when you and your co-author went on his show and you were explaining the very simple Science of — like it’s about inflammation, he almost look like he was a deer in the headlights, there was a specific moment there when you were talking about how many of the various patients are prescribed statins and your respective practices and he was just like, it was as if it did not compute.
Dr. Jonny: Well, I respectfully, I take a ten percent deviation for that point of view from what you said. I thought he was remarkably open, given, how entrenched we are in this belief system that cholesterol causes heart disease, that everybody should be on statin drugs, if lowering cholesterol was a good thing. I thought he was remarkably fair minded about that. He didn’t push back as much as we thought he was going to. He told the audience to push back when their doctors want to put them on statins. He told the audience to get a newer particle test, which we had been preaching about ever since we wrote this book.
The only test that makes any difference in cholesterol measurement, it’s the particle test, it’s not what your average doctor gives and he did tell the audience that’s what you need to get. He did tell women to push back if they were being put on statin drugs. I think, by in large, I want to give him some props for at least being open minded to that and yeah, doctors are not taught that inflammation causes heart disease, they are taught something else. They did know that inflammation was a factor but I think, they’re only now beginning to understand it’s not just a factor it’s probably the central factor.
Jonathan: Dr. Jonny, that’s, actually the key idea. I totally agree with that actually. I was very impressed with how receptive he was. The thing that shocked me more was that it seemed like such a shock to him. Not that he was rude or did not…
Dr. Jonny: Yeah, yeah…
Jonathan: But rather that, here’s the man who you could essentially call America’s doctor, if you wanted to and the fact that this, one of the, the most, one of the largest health issues in our country. The fact that, that this seemed like news to him? That’s what worried me a little bit and I’m curious as to how, I mean certainly, you’ve done so much work to educate yourself on the actual scientific research but if the actual physicians out there are not aware of this or being educated be reps from these drug companies…
Dr. Jonny: Yes, that’s exactly right!
Jonathan: The shock to me was, no wonder Dr. Oz is famous, super nice guy but the fact that this was such a shock to him, that was what I like, “Oh my God, really?”
Dr. Jonny: You know it’s, neither here nor there. The thing that we talked about in the Great Cholesterol Myth is that there are really four major promoters of heart disease and none of them are cholesterol. Cholesterols is pretty much, an innocent bystander or minor player. One of the things I said on the Dr. Oz show, that bears repeating is that trying to lower heart disease by lowering cholesterol, is like trying to lower the calories on your plate by taking the lettuce off your double French fries and burger.
The lettuce has a calorie or two, but is that really the target for that kind of, when you’re trying to lower your calories and make a dent? You really want to target lettuce, that’s kind of what we’re doing with cholesterol. We’re taking this incredibly important vital molecule, the molecule from which you make your [Inaudible 0:18:46], the molecule from which you make Vitamin D, from which you make bio acids, a molecule which is vitally important for the brain, for memory and for thinking.
You’re going to take this and just obsessively concentrate on lowering this kind of an innocent bystander molecule while ignoring the real promoters of heart disease that caused the problem in the first place and those promoters are inflammation, oxidated damage, stress in your life, and sugar in your diet. Those are the four big things we need to be looking at. If you take care of those, you have no problem with cholesterol. It’s a minor player in heart disease.
Jonathan: Dr. Jonny, I want to dig into that. I love that four part breakdown. The one I want to dig into a little bit is this question I have personally. Obviously sugar, a huge component there, what are your thoughts, from a biological perspective whether you eat two pieces of whole wheat bread or six tablespoons of sugar, when they leave your stomach it’s glucose, so…
Dr. Jonny: It’s glucose before it even gets in. By the time it gets down to the esophagus, your stomach is saying, Here comes the ding dong.
Dr. Jonny: It turns into sugar faster that you can snap your fingers.
Jonathan: Just out of curiosity, why, so is it intentional that starch is off that list or are you putting that in the same bucket as sugar?
Dr. Jonny: I’m putting it in the same bucket as sugar, whether you convert it to sugar or whether you take it straight from the domino’s box, it still converts to sugar and acts like sugar and smells like sugar and behaves like sugar in the body. Sad to say, it goes for a lot of whole grains as well or a lot of products that are marketed as healthy because they’re whole grain.
They will all raise your blood sugar about the same… Very, very small differences and yeah, I’m including all of those under the heading of sugar. That means breakfast cereals, rice and potatoes, and pasta and all the rest including the stuff that’s got a little bit of brown coloring and so we call it whole wheat. It’s not much better than this stuff.
Jonathan: Absolutely. Putting a vitamin pill in a cup of coke doesn’t make it healthy for you. Dr. Jonny, can you dig in a little bit into, so right now, I think most listeners are familiar with the outdated theory that when you eat fat, a specially saturated fat because it’s solid at room temperature, never mind that vegetables are also solid at room temperature. It gets stuck in your arteries and builds up and then eventually it gets clogged and it’s like a pipe.
Dr. Jonny: It’s so, so not what happens. I’ve read so much about how we got on this path in the first place. They used these TV commercials which they actually show grease, and they’d say “You see this grease in the kitchen sink? Well, that’s what’s going in your arteries.” And you know we all have that visual but that’s not just what happens at all. In fact, if I just can take a fast tangent, that’s how we got on the cholesterol subject because if you think about the dietary recommendations that we’ve all been saddled with for the last 30 or 40 years, the low fat diet, the high carb diet, the [Inaudible 0:22:06], think about this.
What is the primary reason that everybody has been warned off saturated fat and animal products? There’s really only one reason, because we believe it raises cholesterol. Now, that if the fat and cholesterol not the risk factor we thought it was, if it’s not the appropriate target for lowering heart disease, then what happens to those dietary recommendations? They collapse like a house of cards and that’s exactly how I got from working in the field of weight loss and dietary recommendations to the issue of cholesterol because I would talk to clients when I was still doing one on one personal training in nutrition and I’d say, Look, you guys, you’ve got to lower some of these carbohydrates and start, stop with these egg white omelets.
What is this caca mini egg white omelet stuff? You eat the egg it’s got great stuff in it. No, you can’t do that. It’s got saturated fat, it’s got cholesterol and only when you see how remarkably dumb that whole thing — I’m not calling people who believe that dumb, I’m saying these recommendations were dumb. It’s not just based on what really happens and only when you see that, do you see these dietary recommendations were wrong in the first place and that’s why it’s so important to really go to the heart of matter and say, what does cholesterol do in the body? Why are we so afraid of it?
Why are we avoiding saturated fat? One of the more interesting studies that we talk about in the book is actually a couple of studies, they happened in the last couple of years. When we researchers study this stuff, they frequently, it’s hard to do a long term study where you follow people for 20, 30 years. You see how many people have heart disease. You’ve got to follow them for a long time. It’s a big, complicated study, so what researchers frequently do is, they use cholesterol as a surrogate because you can study cholesterol really easy in six months, you can see it, does it go up, does it go down?
What winds up happening, when using a cholesterol as a surrogate for heart disease. If we eat a certain kind of diet, we live a certain kind of way and our cholesterol goes up, researchers would say the risk for heart disease goes up. More recently, some researchers said you know what, let’s not necessarily use this surrogate marker cholesterol. Let’s see if people who eat saturated fat actually die of heart disease at any greater rate, never mind whether their cholesterol goes out.
Let’s see what the actually one to one co-relation between eating saturated fat and having heart disease is. We’re not going to use the in between marker, we’re going to actually look at the food we eat and the result we get. They did, there were two major meta analysis. For anybody who’s listening, who doesn’t know what a meta analysis is, they look at all the studies that had been done and combined all the data and they say, what have we learned from these 15 studies? Two big meta analysis looked at the impact of saturated fat on actual heart disease.
Both of them found zero effect. Saturated fat does not cause heart disease. It doesn’t clog up your arteries, it doesn’t create fat and it doesn’t kill you. We have been fully concentrating on this marker, this cholesterol marker and which we don’t even measure properly and I hope we’ll get into that a little bit and using it as a surrogate for heart disease when in fact, saturated fat has almost no, not almost has zero effect on heart disease.
Jonathan: Ironically, the thing we are told to substitute into our diet…
Dr. Jonny: Thank you for bringing that up, is…
Jonathan: It is for intensive purposes that cause…
Dr. Jonny: Let me, let me flesh that out. You’re a 100 percent right, Jonathan, and thank you for saying that. Here’s how that works. In our obsessive need to eliminate all saturated fat from our diet, what have we been told to replace it with, the help of vegetables. That’s okay. This is what you need to know about inflammation and vegetable fats. Inflammation, most people who are listening to this are familiar with inflammation in the sense of, if you stubbed your toe and the area gets reddened and inflamed and you get an abscess in your tooth.
It gets all swollen and you get an outbreak on your skin and there is all kind of inflamed redness going on, you wrench on your back on the tennis court and you got all these inflammation and it’s swollen and painful. Most people know that kind of inflammation. That’s called acute inflammation and it hurts but it doesn’t kill. The kind of inflammation we’re talking about is the second type of inflammation called chronic inflammation. Chronic inflammation varies, acute inflammation hurts but chronic inflammation kills.
Chronic inflammation flies beneath the pain radar. It’s not something that you see and it’s not something that you notice. It happens in the arterial walls. When you do autopsies on Alzheimer’s patients you see inflammation in the brain. Inflammation is a part of every major degenerative disease, Alzheimer’s, cancer, obesity, diabetes, even the ones that aren’t usually life threatening like asthma. These are all diseases that have an enormous inflammatory component. That’s the inflammation we’re talking about.
Now, your body follow me here, your body needs to be able to make an inflammatory compound and it needs to be able to make anti inflammatory compounds. Now, a lot of people say, what are we need inflammation for? It’s a part of a human process. If you go back to that splinter in your toe, when it gets swollen and red, that’s water and blood and white blood cells rushing down to the area, the initial army that goes there to surround the area. They want to keep the microbe from getting in there, they want keep an infection from taking place.
This is the part that inflammation is actually — just like a temperature when you have a fever. It’s a part of the healing process. We need to have inflammatory compounds in the body. However, they need to be balanced with anti-inflammatory compounds. Our body makes both of them, it makes inflammatory compounds and anti-inflammatory compounds and they need to be in balance. Now, what do we make those compounds out of? Well, we make anti-inflammatory compounds from Omega 3s, which are the fatty acids found in fish and flaxseeds, the Omega 3s. We make inflammatory compounds out of Omega 6s which are vegetable oil, like corn oil and saffron oil, sunflower oil and canola oil…
Jonathan: Dr. Jonny, just really quick. I don’t mean to break your thought but we’re not talking about coconut and avocado?
Dr. Jonny: No, no, no, we’re talking about the standard vegetable oils that we’ve been sold as really healthy corn oil, all of that stuff.
Jonathan: Okay sorry…
Dr. Jonny: You’re absolutely right. Coconut’s a plant and so is avocado but we’re talking about the ones that are heavy in Omega 6 which are the vast majority of cooking oils. We’ve been told to substitute those. Now, here’s the problem. The ideal dietary proportions of Omega 6s and Omega 3s is one to one, that’s what our Paleolithic ancestors got. Our diet and the research is very clear on this. The most conservative research says that we’re consuming 16 times more Omega 6s than Omega 3s. The less conservative, the more…
Alarmists once said it is as high as 25 to one. It’s like you’ve got these two armies in your body. One’s the inflammation army, one’s the anti inflammation army. You need them both. You’re the budget director and you’re going to assign funds. What we’re doing is funding the inflammation army to the tune of 1,600 percent higher than the money we’re giving to the anti inflammation army. This substitution of saturated fat which is a neutral fat for all of this vegetable oil has done nothing but increase the inflammation in our bodies.
We are consuming massive amounts of inflammatory fats from vegetable oils. You cannot swing a rope in the grocery store without seeing eight million baked goods, all of which use corn oil, saffron oil or sunflower oil or soybean oil. We consume tons of tons of these Omega 6s and virtually no Omega 3s, no wonder we are an inflammation mess!
Jonathan: Jonny, the way that, at least in my own life, I think our listeners will know if you are just not conscious of what you’re eating, you will take in the 16…
Dr. Jonny: I mean, but…
Jonathan: You will never accidentally eat Omega 3s unless you’re going out of your way to eat fish, or flax or algae, there’s very few sources…
Dr. Jonny: Almost none.
Jonathan: Of the concentrated Omega 3s, so it’s almost by default, if you avoid animal products, then you’re really, like you’re just, that’s all you’ve got left.
Dr. Jonny: That’s it! That’s, here’s a little aside. Some of these no fat programs like the Peverell Clinic they do get results in very sick people. We believe that the reason that they get any results at all is not because they’re cutting the saturated fat, it’s because when you go on a no fat program, you’ll stop eating all these inflammatory vegetable oils!
Jonathan: That’s your one to one ratio.
Dr. Jonny: Yes! You’re not consuming either one but, yeah. Now, I think that the no fat programs are ridiculous but the point is, it may be that lower fat programs work not because they reduce saturated fat but because they’re reducing the contributions of the diet of all of these vegetable oils which are just boosting and bolstering inflammation.
Jonathan: That’s such a profound distinction Jonny. I think more globally, we have to look at, for example, individuals who go on just eat-less diets. Well, if you just eat less of a traditional American diet, you’re going to eat less of the 40-60 percent of garbage that, that’s why it’s not working because you’re depriving you body of calories, instead of putting less poison in your body over all.
Dr. Jonny: Precisely correct! Gary Taubes has done wonderful work in this, in pointing that out. If you are eating 4,000 calories, most Americans eat 60 percent or more of carbohydrates. Well, the minute that you cut your diet just, if you kept everything the same proportionally and you just cut it from 4000 calories to 1500, you’ve automatically cut your carbs a lot and that seems to be the triggering macro nutrient that’s really at the heart of a lot of metabolic disorders.
These things may work not for the reasons we think they work but maybe because we’re cutting back on the very food, the fats like Omega 6s, the vegetable oils and the processed carbohydrates and the pure sugar, we’re cutting back on the foods that are actually making us fat, sick, tired and depressed. We think they’re working because we’ve eating saturated fat. They’re actually working because we’re eating less sugar and less vegetable oil.
Jonathan: Absolutely. Dr. Jonny, I love it. I love it and Jonny, I hope we can have you back on the show because literally, we’ve only, I got a page of notes here, I’m about…
Dr. Jonny: Are we done already? Oh my god, we’re just getting started.
Jonathan: No, that’s, one things I do want to do to wrap us here is I want to give our listeners a gift and that gift is when, especially for listeners that might be struggling with, who may have been, like my wife for example, who is a very young woman who, her physician keeps pestering her about her cholesterol and statin, he’s telling her to eat oatmeal…
Dr. Jonny: Oh dear God…
Jonathan: Tell us what these people should do…
Dr. Jonny: Well if you’re a woman and your doctor pestering you about your cholesterol change, please get a second opinion. Oh God, it’s very hard to sum this up but the only population that has been shown to have a modest benefit from statin drugs, statin drugs by the way are, for people who don’t know, are the classic medications that is used to lower cholesterol. Lipitor, Zocor, Pravachol, all the OLs, all the statin drugs. The only population in which they have been shown to have a modest and let me emphasize, modest, way more modest that the pharmaceutical companies would have you believe.
The only population in which there is a modest benefit are middle aged men with existing coronary disease. Women have almost no benefit from the statin drugs, older people, no benefit and God knows, children have never been studied for statin drugs even though they’re trying to put all kids on statin drugs now, as a preventative. If you’re a woman, in good health, with no risk factors and your doctor’s hawking you about cholesterol, please push back, you don’t have to be on statin drugs.
Jonathan: Jonny, what should we do in general if we have “high cholesterol” anything above 200. I start to get people pestered about. What, do we say to our physicians?
Dr. Jonny: Well, the first thing that you say is…
Jonathan: Take a copy of The Great Cholesterol Myth? Is that alright?
Dr. Jonny: Well, I got to tell you how many people have given that to their doctors and how many doctors have written back to us and said “Thank you for explaining this, thank you for saying that.” We’re talking earlier about Dr. Oz and some of the others and their reception. We had found, we were very much expecting to get a lot of real bad push back on this but I can’t tell you the number of doctors who have come out of the wall and said “Thank God for somebody’s telling the truth about this.” We’ve been saying these for years and nobody will listen.
If the thing to push back on — here’s the take home point. Your doctor wants to put you on statins because of high cholesterol ask him to do the particle test, the old fashion test that just looks at “good and bad cholesterol” is out of date by a good 10 years. We now know that there are at least five different kinds of HDL cholesterol and at least five different kinds of LDL cholesterol. The two most important part to pay attention to are LDL A and LDL B. LDL A, which is a type of LDL cholesterol that so called bad. LDL A looks like a cotton ball, it does no damage, it doesn’t adhere anything, it doesn’t get stuck in the artery walls, it does about as much damage as to a cotton ball at you Jonathan.
LDL B is a nasty little bugger. That’s a small little, looks like a little baby gum pellet. It’s small, it’s inflamed, it’s oxidated. It does get stuck in inflammatory pockets in the wall. That’s something you want to be concerned about but, if you don’t know what type of LDL you have, then you are literally, then your doctor is treating a number. He’s throwing a dart at a dart board with a blindfold on. You have to push back and get the particle test and what’s very interesting is that when people with “high LDLs” sometimes get the particle test, they find out that their LDL is LDL A and there’s nothing to worry about.
Now, if it’s at all LDL B, there’s some things you need to do like eat a higher, much more anti inflammatory diet and take a lot of anti inflammatory supplements because then you’ve got a lot of inflammation going on but you’ve got to know what kind of LDL you have. It is no longer good enough to simply know HDL and LDL. You’ve got to get the modern test, just Google particle test. There’s at least four of them out there. Some insurance companies cover it. If they don’t cover it, it’s worth the 60 bucks or whatever it is to get it done yourself because that’s the only cholesterol test that will give you any valuable information whatsoever.
Jonathan: Once again, it’s about quality, not just quantity.
Dr. Jonny: Exactly.
Jonathan: Jonny, thank you so much for joining us. I suspect that we have, or you have more appropriately, potentially even saves some lives during the show. I really, really appreciate that and I really, really hope to have you back because we really just scratched the surface.
Dr. Jonny: Yes, we did and I would love to come back. It was so much fun, thank you for having me.
Jonathan: Thank you Jonny and folks, if you have not familiarized yourself with Dr. Bowden’s work, please do. He’s the co-author of The Great Cholesterol Myth, as well as a bunch of other books. Just look him up on Amazon, just buy the whole Jonny Bowden’s collector set.
Dr. Jonny: Thank you Jonathan, so much, very kind, thank you.
Jonathan: Check out jonnybowden.com and then of course, when you’re up there, check out his brand new program, Unleash Your Sin and remember, this week folks, to eat more, and exercise less, but do that smarter. Talk to you soon.
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