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Don’t Listen To Me!

Instead, how about listening to a man who has held over 5,000 beating human hearts in his hands? Dwight Lundell, MD.

Heart Surgeon Admits Huge Mistake

We physicians with all our training, knowledge and authority often acquire a rather large ego that tends to make it difficult to admit we are wrong. So, here it is. I freely admit to being wrong. As a heart surgeon with 25 years experience, having performed over 5,000 open-heart surgeries, today is my day to right the wrong with medical and scientific fact.

I trained for many years with other prominent physicians labeled “opinion makers.” Bombarded with scientific literature, continually attending education seminars, we opinion makers insisted heart disease resulted from the simple fact of elevated blood cholesterol.

The only accepted therapy was prescribing medications to lower cholesterol and a diet that severely restricted fat intake. The latter of course we insisted would lower cholesterol and heart disease. Deviations from these recommendations were considered heresy and could quite possibly result in malpractice.

It Is Not Working!

These recommendations are no longer scientifically or morally defensible. The discovery a few years ago that inflammation in the artery wall is the real cause of heart disease is slowly leading to a paradigm shift in how heart disease and other chronic ailments will be treated.

The long-established dietary recommendations have created epidemics of obesity and diabetes, the consequences of which dwarf any historical plague in terms of mortality, human suffering and dire economic consequences.

He goes on to explain the huge difference between the natural benefits of acute inflammation, contrasted with the harm to heart, blood vessels and other tissues arising from chronic inflammation. Just the sort of thing I’ve been saying for pretty nearly two years, now, and others for even longer. I recommend to read the whole thing, which is not lengthy in any case.

But let me bring you the punchline, keeping in mind that this guy understands heart disease just about as up close and personal as you can get.

The rest of us have simply followed the recommended mainstream diet that is low in fat and high in polyunsaturated fats and carbohydrates, not knowing we were causing repeated injury to our blood vessels. This repeated injury creates chronic inflammation leading to heart disease, stroke, diabetes and obesity. Let me repeat that. The injury and inflammation in our blood vessels is caused by the low fat diet that has been recommended for years by mainstream medicine.

What are the biggest culprits of chronic inflammation? Quite simply, they are the overload of simple, highly processed carbohydrates (sugar, flour and all the products made from them) and the excess consumption of omega-6 vegetable oils like soybean, corn and sunflower that are found in many processed foods.

And again, the drone from this blog is virtually identical. But don’t listen to me.

Now you can go read Part 2.

Richard Nikoley

I'm Richard Nikoley. Free The Animal began in 2003 and as of 2021, contains 5,000 posts. I blog what I wish...from health, diet, and food to travel and lifestyle; to politics, social antagonism, expat-living location and time independent—while you sleep—income. I celebrate the audacity and hubris to live by your own exclusive authority and take your own chances. Read More

13 Comments

  1. Patrik on February 4, 2009 at 18:24

    Following up on the conversation regarding the lipid panel.

    (https://freetheanimal.com/root/2009/02/fasting-in-the-la-times.html#comment-6a00d8341d0fcc53ef011168445af2970c)

    Just got back from Kaiser. Surprise, surprise…

    1) Doc prescribed statins. (I flat out told him no way.)

    Starting tell him about Paleo and quickly shut up as this guy is a drone. Nice drone, but drone nonetheless.

    2) Handed me Kaiser guidelines. Some quotes verbatim:

    "Take your medicine"

    "Include whole-grain cereals and breads"

    "Use olive oil and canola oil when you cook. Try cholesterol lowering spreads, such as Benecol or Take Control"

    "Limit the amount of high-fat meats you eat"

    "soy products such as tofu instead of high-fat meats"

    "Choose low-fat or fat-free milk"

    You get the picture. Eat the SAD.

    @Richard

    I will do the NMR LipoProfile test soon and will email you the results. Thanks for all the good advice.

  2. Patrik on February 4, 2009 at 18:39

    @Richard

    Any way to enable RSS for comments? There are so many good ones and it is tough to keep track. Or alternatively, enable email follow-up comments per post?

  3. Dana on February 4, 2009 at 21:23

    I wish I could be optimistic about his chances of being listened to. Dr. Atkins was a cardiologist. It ticks me off every time I hear some pod person droning on about how much healthier the South Beach Diet is because Dr. Agatson is a cardiologist–I'm like, "So was Dr. Atkins and everyone said he was a quack." Now this guy, and nobody's gonna listen to him either. Are you kidding? It doesn't sell any drugs.

    They're killing my dad with this B.S. Classic metabolic syndrome and earlyish type 2 diabetes. Last April he presented at the hospital for a blood draw for his annual physical and they called him after he got home. "You doing OK?" He was so anemic he needed five pints. By some miracle he drove back to the hospital and they didn't need to call an ambulance. He'd been losing blood so slowly that his body got used to it. I did some Googling about it after he told me–several months later, as in a few weeks ago, that's my dad for ya–and anemia in diabetics is a sign of kidney damage, much less anemia as bad as he had it. I told him to ask his doc to check kidney function. He had no idea what I was talking about, barely knows what a kidney does. (This is not a stupid man, he just never felt he had a reason to learn that stuff.) They'll decide it's some mysterious "syndrome" and put him on yet another drug and he's already on statins, BP meds and something for reflux.

    All he has to do is cut out the white bread and rice, is the sad part. He could easily go to meat-only paleo and not miss a beat; he hates vegetables. But no. That's not what they'll tell him to do. I'm too young to lose my dad and he's too young to be lost. Not even sixty yet.

  4. Chris H on February 5, 2009 at 06:27

    THe paradigm isn't shifting very quickly here in the uk:

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/society/2009/feb/05/fsa-saturated-fats-heart-disease

  5. John Campbell on February 5, 2009 at 06:52

    Richard – great post – I went to the article and printed it – left it in the staff room for general reading.

    I fundamentally believe people are not stupid – I think that the paradigm is slowly shifting. We will reach a tipping point, but who knows when. I think that people are starting to realize that the current paradigm has not worked and is not working. Thank goodness for the web and sites like this. The truth will win, but it is going to take some time. I would short big pharma in the long term.

  6. John Campbell on February 5, 2009 at 07:00

    I think that the mainstream realize the barbarians (or cavemen?) are at the gates and they are become nervous – hysterical to follow.

    This might actually be fun to watch.

  7. Dr Dan on February 4, 2009 at 23:05

    I see two things happening which either way i dont like

    1. That the mainstream never gives up on pushing carbs and people continue to believe it

    2. That the paradigm shifts happens so slowly that people being to say uh duh we always knew carbs were bad thats nothing new.

    Either way no one will listen to us because no one wants to admit they are wrong.

    At least this guy has the balls to admit it.

  8. Richard Nikoley on February 5, 2009 at 06:39

    Wow.

  9. Richard Nikoley on February 5, 2009 at 06:52

    Patrik:

    There was an RSS, but only per entry which is not very useful. Since I went to TypePad's new commenting platform, looks like that's no longer there (but I'll investigate). As yet, there is no all-comment RSS, which sucks. The good thing about the new platform, however, is that people can reply to specific comments and they appear right below, indented, so it's a "threading" mechanism. In addition, you can get replies via email and reply as well via email, which automatically gets posted.

    But I'm going to lean once again on TypePad for an all-comment RSS.

  10. BEELifestyle on February 5, 2009 at 07:11

    Amazing!

    Thanks for summing up too- as I'm not a big fan of long, scientifically challenging posts. My brain goes ka-put!

    The paradigm is definitely shifting, but not fast enough- I find myself hiding my diet just because I don't want to subject myself to ridicule. Soon!

  11. Kris on February 7, 2009 at 01:52

    Greetings from Finland! Love your blog!

    Same thing going on in here… maybe you have heard of the North Karelia project and Dr. Pekka Puska? Now there's a candidate for being the biggest hoax of the 20th century. And we finns follow these guys like cattle. Sad.

    But some kind of change is happening, even here. Resistance groing, activity in the web etc. I my self can not imagine to return back to the days of low-fat high-carbon. The improvement that has happened in my own health (after I changed my diet to hflc) is evidence enough for me.

    Best wishes to You
    Kris

  12. Stephan on February 7, 2009 at 09:54

    Sugar, flour and vegetable oil. Dr. Lundell is sharp! It's gratifying to see a prominent cardiologist come around like that. He clearly has both a brain and a conscience.

  13. Pam Maltzman on February 11, 2009 at 01:00

    It is gratifying to see one doctor admit where he went wrong.

    I shudder to think, however, how long it will be before the truth is even approached in medical schools.

    One of the hospitals for which I transcribe is a teaching hospital. Many of the discharge summaries are dictated by residents, interns, and even medical students…

    and ALL of the cardiac patients are put on statins (or other lipid-lowering agents) and told to eat a "heart-healthy" diet (as in low-fat, low-cholesterol, low-sodium, ad nauseam).

    There have been dissenters from the cholesterol hypothesis from the beginning, but they got mowed down by the steamroller that is orthodox, organized, politicized medicine in the U.S.

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