By Dr. George Goodheart
Summary: In 1961 the American Heart Association (AHA) officially endorsed the “diet-heart hypothesis,” the idea that overconsumption of dietary fat increases the risk of heart attack. In particular the AHA condemned saturated fat, a type of fat found primarily in animal foods. Holistic health practitioners balked at the idea of this natural substance causing an unnatural condition such as heart disease and sensibly claimed that, if anything, synthetic fats such as hydrogenated fats and heat-processed plant oils—introduced just prior to the rise of the heart disease epidemic—were likely to blame. These natural healers proved to be prescient, as research in recent decades has shown a correlation between the consumption of hydrogenated fats and heart disease while failing to show such a connection for natural saturated fat. (Ironically, many of the early studies “supporting” the diet-heart hypothesis lumped hydrogenated fats and saturated fat into the same category.) In this article from 1965, famed chiropractor Dr. George Goodheart dispels myths about the diet-heart hypothesis—including the idea that cholesterol is a toxin—and explains why natural fats actually aid proper cholesterol metabolism, not hinder it. He goes on to suggest that overconsumption of refined carbohydrates, not natural fat, is likely the biggest dietary cause of heart disease—a hypothesis explored in scientific detail in the seminal 2007 book Good Calories Bad Calories. From the Digest of Chiropractic Economics, 1965. Lee Foundation for Nutritional Research form VH-1 75.[The following is a transcription of the original Archives document. To view or download the original document, click here.]
Fat and Its Utilization in Cholesterol Control
Many individuals are concerned and alarmed about the subject of cholesterol. These individuals may include the doctor as well as his patient. There is a wealth of information in the popular press regarding this situation, and most of it is misinformation.
Cholesterol is an important tissue substance and is not a substance to be avoided! Cholesterol is a hormone precursor, and it rises and falls in the bloodstream in proportion to hormone levels more than with dietary factors, although the dietary factor is given all the attention. A 1938 report in the Journal of Biological Chemistry showed that test animals fed cholesterol produced less in their livers, and this has been confirmed many times since. It is therefore obvious that persons who have a high blood cholesterol acquire it through reasons other than too much through food intake. The real reason is the lack of natural cholesterol mobilizers naturally present in natural fat.
Cholesterol mobilizers are as natural to fats as the key you buy at the hardware store for the lock on your house. It is only the unnatural fats that do not contain the keys, so to speak, and by reducing the amount of traditional fats you are in effect “locking yourself out of your own house.” It has been shown that linoleic acids present in unsaturated fats will reduce cholesterol, but the arachidonic acid in beef fat does it almost twice as well. [In either case] you can see the futility of reducing the fats in the diet.[Photo, with caption:] Dr. Goodheart.
The most common complaint with an excess of cholesterol is gallbladder congestion, and some common-sense temporary reduction of the fats is sometimes necessary, but the real remedy is vitamin F, present in fresh oils, along with avoidance of most baked goods [as well as] regular manipulative correction of the lymphatic system via the neuro-lymphatic reflexes.
Proteins and carbohydrates are absorbed directly into the bloodstream, but fats are not directly absorbed since in high concentration fats destroy red blood cells. Thus the lymphatics absorb fats from the intestine and meter it into the bloodstream in small increments or dribbles that can safely be handled.
When the lymphatic channels become partially blocked in a small percentage but over a wide area, the rest of the lymphatic system can become overloaded, and the lack of transport both to and from the cells contributes to a high blood fat and also a puzzling anemia. The lymphatics not only function as a sewer system but, like a suds-saver on an automatic washer, absorb the protein, fat, minerals, and vitamins that are not used by the cells and carry them back to the bloodstream. So there are both waste and nutrition inherent in the lymphatic system.
Recently, in measuring “tagged” blood protein—tagged with radioactive iodine—it was found that half of the blood protein is lost from the bloodstream. In 24 hours the prompt “suds-saving” retrieval of this protein by the lymphatic system prevents this constant loss from becoming an overall loss. When the lymphatics are partially blocked, this marvelous system does not function, and fats build up—first in the lymph stream, slowing it down by thickening it, and then [in the blood] by dumping the higher concentration of fat into the bloodstream. Therefore if the fat is not natural or there are not sufficient fat mobilizers in the diet, there is an inevitable rise in the fat level.
A simple method of measuring the blood fat is to do a microhematocrit with an “Adams Readocrit” or a similar instrument and observe the opacity of the serum after the automatic function of the centrifuge. A clear serum indicates a normal cholesterol; a highly opaque serum indicates a high cholesterol. The Schuco-Lamarr test set lets you do a cholesterol [test] in less than 5 minutes in your office in four easy, quick steps that can be done while the patient is dressing. Only 0.1 cc of serum is needed, [along with] two simple reagents and a simple color comparison. It can be obtained from your usual source or your college or direct from Schuco Scientific, 250 West 18th St., New York, NY.
Another method of estimating the cholesterol level is to do a thyroid function test using the Achilles tendon reflex as an indicator. A previous article described these instruments and their function. The thyroid lowers cholesterol, but if the vitamin F (fat mobilizer, “key for the lock”) is absent, the thyroid function produces a toxic secretion that fails to level off the fat in the blood, and the blood therefore accumulates. But here again the problem is simplified by remembering that all natural fats contain vitamin F. So if the thyroid checks out sluggish—for example, 430 milliseconds as measured with an achillometer by Medco or the Photoelectric Photomotogram—then the cholesterol is usually elevated above 250. The reverse is also true when the millisecond time is fast as, for example, 200 milliseconds. Here the cholesterol level is usually too low.
The fats and oils commonly used in our urban diet are usually heated, and the synthetic fats that have flooded the market in oleomargarine and ice cream are generally made from rancid oils that [have been] carefully purified. Sitosterols and other factors refined from soybean oils and linseed oils are being promoted as cholesterol-reducing factors, but this is a shortsighted procedure, for the overloaded tissues stay overloaded and the “compensatory increase in cholesterol synthesis will always prevent more than a transitory reduction.”
The fallacy of restricting the intake of time tested and traditional natural foods such as butter, eggs, and meat fat, when the cause is the intake of synthetic fats, could not be more obvious. For this reason, avoid stale cereals, packaged breakfast foods, and most baked goods. Instead, use fresh natural oils such as soy, olive, sesame, and peanut. This is simple advice to a complex problem, but a little knowledge is a dangerous thing, and just as in hyperinsulinism with its low blood sugar, the key is not to take sugar. So also in the high blood cholesterol the key is not to follow the obvious but erroneous policy of reducing the fats but to increase the intake of the natural fats with their fat mobilizers. Dr. Yudkin, at the University of London, says in an American Review of October 1964, “Statistics relating fat to ischemic heart disease in different populations may express only an indirect relationship—the causal connection being with sugar.”
He also says that there is no relationship between dietary fat and ischemic heart disease. These quotes are from the Lancet, 1964.
Dr. Yudkin and his associates found invariably that all the high cholesterol patients he examined had a high intake of carbohydrate and not necessarily fats. Since the old doctrine of fats burning in the flame of carbohydrates has been thoroughly disproved, it is obvious that fat deposits in the presence of excess carbohydrate deposit both in blood and tissue. Here also is proof of the need not to restrict the natural fats. In a test feeding of oleo and butter on two groups of adolescents in an orphan asylum, results showed the girls became taller than boys when the girls ate oleo, but this did not occur when the girls ate butter. This shows the effect of deprivation of the sex hormone precursors, which is a castration effect of growth stimulation—just as a farmer or rancher or chicken producer castrates his meat animals.
Refined fats create many problems, the least of which is the cholesterol level, and the pseudoscience we are constantly met with only proves one fact—that God does not make mistakes. Man makes them when he departs too far from the natural order. Nature cannot make something out of nothing.
The fact that fat meat and butterfat are low in linoleic acid has prompted many to talk down these materials. But as has been mentioned as far back as 1948 in the Annual Review of Biochemistry, the arachidonic acid is far more active than the standard that they presently measure all fats against, namely linoleic acid, and since arachidonic acid has more double bonds, animal fats and butter help, not hinder, cholesterol problems.
These patients [sic] sometimes say they feel worse after a meal and experience numbness and tingling in a bizarre distribution. They also are repetitious and complain of depression and forgetfulness. These patients have headaches that occur in the morning, but unlike hyperinsulinism’s morning headache, these patients get worse following breakfast, with pain in the back of the head. They also frequently complain of dizziness and ringing of the ears, yet their hearing tests are usually normal. They often bruise easily, without any history of trauma, and either yawn often or have a lowered breath-holding time that is below 20 seconds. Both of these last symptoms relate to oxygen metabolism, which is disturbed in cholesterol-metabolism faults.
Cholesterol contributes structurally to the cell wall and semipermeable membrane construction, and the reason why hypertension is associated with a high cholesterol is that too much pressure is needed to force the natural diffusion of fluids thru the capillary beds, since this is how the cells are able to get their nutrition.
The use of natural [vitamin] E and F complexes, as found in natural fats or in concentrated form from suppliers to our profession, help greatly in rehabilitating these patients, but an intelligent diet is paramount to correct and prevent reoccurrence.
The existence of the neuro-lymphatic reflexes have been proven by Owen, Chapman, DeJarnette, and many others. They are located on the anterior of the body between the intercostal cartilages, generally close to the sternum. On the posterior they exist between the transverse process and the spinous process. They are organ specific and respond to an incredibly light pressure. Mobilization of these reflexes measurably aids the blocked fat pattern, not only in the blood but also in the tissues and, coupled with the newly discovered neuro-lymphatic reflex associated with muscle testing and balance, gives a nutritional and manipulative interlocking treatment that allows the chiropractic physician to give service above self in the best tradition of help to the patient. It is one more way of helping [both] people and chiropractic.
Copies of a diet useful in cholesterol problems are available from the author without charge. Please enclose a stamped, self-addressed envelope. [Preserved for historical purposes; copies of diet not available.]
By Dr. George J. Goodheart, 542 Michigan Building, Detroit, Michigan 48226. Reprinted from the Digest of Chiropractic Economics, July/August 1965, Vol. 8, No. 1, by the Lee Foundation for Nutritional Research.[Note:] The above article is reported as a professional service by Standard Process Laboratories. Certain persons considered experts may disagree with one or more conclusions and opinions expressed by the author, but the same are considered nevertheless to be of current interest to chiropractic physicians. Reporting of such article shall not be construed as a recommendation concerning use of any specific product or products, nutritional or other procedures employed being a matter for the doctor’s professional knowledge and judgment depending on his evaluation of the individual involved.