Is Cholesterol the Culprit?
It started with cholesterol over 25-30 years ago. The ads have been relentless. Avoid eggs and butter. Eat margarine. You know the story.
In fact, recent studies are once again showing that eggs aren't so bad after all. (actually eggs provide a superb source of protein). And even more recently, we are seeing "super eggs" with increased amounts of Vitamin E and high dose DHA for enhanced brain and cardiac function.
So the theory was too simplistic and naive as we well know today: The figure below shows that there were an equal number of people who suffered a heart attack as those who did not suffer the same fate with the same cholesterol at all levels.
Cholesterol does not predict Heart Attacks
Thus, the famous Framingham Study did not have the predictive value that we have been led to believe.
Whatís going on here?
As with all models of this sort, it turned out to be an incomplete and oversimplified picture. It was also based on the notion that correlation equals causation. A risky assumption. More studies and many more risk factors have recently been identified.
The Latest Picture
We now look at a much more complex picture of cholesterol and lipids (fats or triglycerides), and newer risk factors, in the blood to give a more sophisticated and predictive picture of your cardiovascular health or risk:
The New 21st Century Risk factor profile
Look above at LDL particle sizing. There is an increasingly recognized, but infrequently and poorly diagnosed syndrome of high triglycerides and low HDL which is a surrogate marker for these small dense LDL particles. Termed Pattern B or ALP (Atherogenic Lipoprotein). Look at the following illustration. See how these small dense particles "leak" into the vascular wall and the larger LDL particles don't?
This leak is the beginning of atherogenesis, or atherosclerosis -- hardening of the arteries. The end result: high blood pressure and blocked arteries eventually leading to strokes and heart attacks.
Atherogenic Lipoprotein Picture
Why is this important? Because routine testing will not measure any of this. A Normal LDL level might actually be quite dangerous. You need to go to more sophisticated testing and understanding.
This what we here at the Institute offer you -- a more complete look at these very complex issues. And better answers to why you may have problems with difficult to treat hypertension or heart disease.
So the story is a lot more than just Cholesterol. Cells need a certain amount of cholesterol as a lubricant for healthy cell membranes. It is also the biochemical source of all sex, stress and blood pressure regulating steroids --- so that it canít be all bad.
In fact, some studies have suggested that very low cholesterol levels in men can increase risk of death.
Bottom line: you need the resources and expertise of physicians who fully understand the more complex story of lipids and who have access to more advanced testing methods.
We are now offering one of the most sophisticated, and non-invasive approaches to cardio-vascular problems available anywhere -- from the comprehensive testing as explained above to our unique 4-hour intensive CV Bundle:
Resting EKG -- basics
ECHOcardiogram for ejection fraction -- dynamics
Dual Isotope HeartScan -- regional flow
Treadmill Stress Testing with Met equivalent -- exercise tolerance
Carotid Ultrasound or IMT (intimal media thickness) scans
superfast CT (EBT) HeartScans for coronary artery calcifications
We are most excited to serve as a regional lipid disorder center following many of the guidelines of the American Heart Association and in conjunction with one of the best and most accurate labs in the country - Berkeley HeartLabs directed by Dr. Robert Superko. They are clearly in the vanguard of lipid analysis and newer thinking. More recently, we have added the more automated, and cost effective, VAP testing which approximates the gold standard BHL testing. In this ever evolving field of study even SpectraCell Labs, is now planning yet another variant of these tests which looks highly promising.
Using our sophisticated nutritional approach, we at the Los Gatos Longevity Institute can take this to a new dimension of dietary modification along with intensive and targeted and known vitamin co-factors, selected minerals, vital anti-oxidants and phytonutrients.
Thatís a lot of information.
So call us for an appointment and we can begin to explain this more thoroughly. It might save your life whether you have known cardiovascular disease, or want to prevent the consequences of this.
Call for a consultation today. It could be the most important thing you've ever done for yourself.