Health

Cardiologist Promotes High-Fat Diet with Olive Oil for Heart Patients

Sugar and excess carbohydrates are the number one enemy of heart disease, not fat.

Aug. 29, 2016
By Jedha Dening

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If you were told to eat butter, coconut oil and olive oil every day as part of your heart-healthy diet, what would you think?

Like most, you’d prob­a­bly think it’s a crazy sug­ges­tion. After all, we’ve been indoc­tri­nated for years on end that we should avoid fat for a healthy heart. However, accord­ing to car­di­ol­o­gist Aseem Malhotra, the nutri­tion facts we’ve all been led to believe are wrong.

Adopting a Mediterranean diet after suf­fer­ing a heart attack is actu­ally more pow­er­ful than aspirin, statins and even heart stents.- Aseem Malhotra

“As part of a heart-healthy diet, I advise my car­diac patients to enjoy full-fat cheese, along with olive oil and veg­eta­bles,” Malhotra told the New York Times. Malhotra also rec­om­mends enjoy­ing meat and eggs, includ­ing the yolks.

According to the New York Times report, “the dan­gers of high cho­les­terol are over­stated.” A fact that has now been widely rec­og­nized.

The American Dietary Guidelines Committee removed the con­cern about cho­les­terol in the new dietary guide­lines released in 2015, stat­ing that:

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“Previously, the Dietary Guidelines for Americans rec­om­mended that cho­les­terol intake be lim­ited to no more than 300 mg/day. The 2015 DGAC will not bring for­ward this rec­om­men­da­tion because avail­able evi­dence shows no appre­cia­ble rela­tion­ship between con­sump­tion of dietary cho­les­terol and serum cholesterol…cholesterol is not a nutri­ent of con­cern for over­con­sump­tion.”

Malhotra is also a researcher with pub­lished works in var­i­ous med­ical jour­nals on topics includ­ing cho­les­terol, heart dis­ease, physi­cian respon­si­bil­ity in car­di­ol­ogy, healthy eating, sat­u­rated fat, sugar and much more.

Malhotra is not the only doctor to embark on this cru­sade to pro­mote a higher fat diet. Other doc­tors include American car­dio­vas­cu­lar expert, Steven E. Nissen; American pedi­atric endocri­nol­o­gist, Robert Lustig; Swedish expert, Andreas Eenfeldt; British dietit­ian, Trudi Deakin; American heart sur­geon, Dwight Lundell, American endocri­nol­o­gist, David Ludwig; Australian anaes­thetist, Rod Tayler; American brain spe­cial­ist, David Perlmutter; American obe­sity spe­cial­ist, Sarah Hallberg, British obe­sity expert Zoe Harcombe and many more.

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Aseem Malhotra

One of the key mes­sages many of these doc­tors are push­ing is that sugar and excess car­bo­hy­drates are the number one enemy of heart dis­ease, not fat.

If for some reason sat­u­rated fats may still seem like a stretch to you, there is noth­ing to fear in con­sum­ing veg­etable sources of fat, as most research con­firms that polyun­sat­u­rated and monoun­sat­u­rated fats are the best heart-healthy fats to con­sume. For instance, among other research, olive oil has been shown to pro­tect against coro­nary artery dis­ease and reduce the risk of car­diac events.

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As Malhotra stated: “I tell my heart patients that adopt­ing a Mediterranean diet after suf­fer­ing a heart attack is actu­ally more pow­er­ful than aspirin, statins and even heart stents,” he said. “I’m not saying these treat­ments aren’t ben­e­fi­cial — they are. But the lifestyle changes are even more pow­er­ful, and with­out the side effects.”