It’s simultaneously true that carbohydrates are an important component of a healthy diet and that there are times when they should be avoided altogether.
Much like any major food group, the daily recommended value of carbs changes depending on an individual’s needs and objectives.
Over time, familial hypercholesterolemia, defined as a four-fold increase of low-density lipoprotein cholesterol in one’s blood, raises one’s risk for coronary heart disease (CHD).
Both conditions result in an excess of plaque, which in turn narrows arteries and restricts blood flow to the heart. Symptoms can include chest pain but sometimes sufferers remain asymptomatic until a critical cardiac event.
Surprisingly, the cardiologists behind the new report found no advantageous changes in high-cholesterol patients who abstained from saturated fats like meat, eggs, and cheese—in contradiction with conventional wisdom.
“The basis of this recommendation is the ‘diet-heart hypothesis’, which postulates that consumption of food rich in saturated fat increases serum cholesterol levels, which increases the risk of CHD,” the authors wrote in the new paper. “We have challenged the rationale for FH dietary recommendations based on the absence of support for the diet-heart hypothesis, and the lack of evidence that low saturated fat, low cholesterol diet reduces coronary events in FH individuals.”
Dietary Recommendations for Familial Hypercholesterolaemia
It should be noted that familial hypercholesterolemia (FH) varies slightly from generalized high-blood pressure.
For a start, familial hypercholesterolemia is a genetic disorder, more discreetly caused by a defect on chromosome 19.
Sufferers are unable to remove low-density lipoprotein (LDL, or bad cholesterol) from their bloodstream.
On average, men affected by FH develop heart disease roughly 20 years earlier than normal.
Fifty-percent of men with untreated FH will likely have a heart attack before they reach 50. For women, 30 percent of untreated FH patients will likely have a heart attack by age 60.
An adjusted ratio of carbohydrate to fat in a diet of someone with FH appeared to influence surrogate biomarkers associated with the incidence of coronary events.
Consistently, low carb diets facilitated to decreased heart disease risks. Conversely, despite a bounty of literature to the contrary, the authors found no reason for FH patients to avoid saturated fats.
Any food consumed in excess poses risk, but saturated fats did not yield unique setbacks in this regard.
A low-carb diet is the most effective way for people at an increased risk of developing heart disease, by way of obesity, hypertension, and diabetes.
The new data set has been corroborated by a followup analysis recently published in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology.
The new report motioned that foods that raise blood sugar, such as bread, potatoes, and sweets, should be reduced, rather than tropical oils and animal-based food.
“For the past 80 years, people with familial hypercholesterolemia have been told to lower their cholesterol with a low saturated fat diet,” says David Diamond, a co-author from the University of South Florida, in a media statement. “Our study showed that a more ‘heart-healthy’ diet is one low in sugar, not saturated fat.”