Heart disease is something we all try to avoid. It can be fatal and people generally adapt their diet to suit the healthy lifestyle and avoid as many of these problems as possible. One of the major reasons for heart disease has been attributed to the consumption of fats. In particular, saturated fats have been said to have an adverse effect on the heart and your well-being.
The “diet-heart” hypothesis was first coined in the 1950s by a man with the name of Ancel Benjamin Keys. Keys was a physiologist with a Ph.D. from the Cambridge University and he convincingly stated his case to Paul Dudley White, one of the founding members of the AHA (American Heart Association). With little to no science available to counteract this hypothesis and the heart attack of US president Dwight Eisenhower.
Since heart disease was becoming more and more popular amongst the middle-class American, the study was readily accepted. In this article, we take a deeper look at the study. This will give you a general insight of how new studies in the medical field has disproved many of the claims from Ancel Keys and how fats are not really so bad for your health or the health of your dog.
To support his study, Keys cherry-picked seven countries and these countries were the US, Japan, Yugoslavia, Italy, Greece, Netherlands, and Finland. However, his study was seriously flawed. During the time, these countries were the perfect countries to pick as they all had problems that showed how fatty foods and saturated fat contributes to heart disease.
Later studies have shown how Keys left out countries like Norway and Denmark, both of which also had a high consumption of saturated fat consumption, but very little problems with heart disease. Additionally, China was also left out and this country had high problems with heart disease, but they had a very low-fat consumption as part of the average diet.
Another flaw was the fact that Keys only tested around 4% of the 12,000 participants in the case study. However, he was impressed by the long lifetimes of many Greek natives on the Island of Crete. The biggest problem with tests and Greece was that he tested the individuals after they had just completed a long time of fasting for religious purposes.
Since these Greek natives mostly lived from meat and other poultry dishes, the results were not accurate, leading Ancel Keys to state that a low-fat diet is the key to longevity in life. With inconclusive studies being shown, the AHA was really impressed by the results of the “heart diet” hypothesis and this was instated in 1977 by the AHA. People were being urged to refrain from eating too many fatty foods.
Since no females were ever used in the studies, the Women’s Health Initiative got into the midst of the action and they studied 49,000 women to see how the low-fat diet can help prevent heart disease. In the aftermath of the study, no conclusive evidence was ever released to suggest that the low-fat diet does have an effect on preventing strokes, heart attacks, and diabetes.
It is also worth noting that during this period, the AHA ignored around 6 different random studies of no less than 2,500 patients that showed little to zero benefits of choosing the low-fat diet and the effect it has on the heart. Since these were all ignored, the AHA stuck to the” heart diet” hypothesis and eventually around 1984, this was imposed in Britain as well.
Between 1967 and 1973, doctors intervened in the diets of around 9,000 people. This was split into a cohort testing group and a control group. The diets of the testing group were replaced by polyunsaturated vegetable oils, whilst the control group remained on their regular US diet. While many dropped out from the study, around 2,500 people remained on their diets for more than a year. Since many of these people were chosen from mental institutions and homes for the elderly, around 140 of the patients eventually passed away.
While the results of the tests were not published for quite some time, a group of independent investigators eventually got their hands on the studies. They were a little bewildered to find that around 42% of the deaths were all part of the test group, whilst only 22% of the deaths were from the control group following their normal US diet.
One of the biggest anomalies was the fact that even though there was a 13% reduction in the blood cholesterol level of those on the vegetable oil diet, there was a 30% higher mortality rate on the part of those who were on the vegetable oil diet if they had an age of 65 or older. The only way to justify this was to assume that since the patients had lower cholesterol, the LDL particles were oxidized more easily and this could invade the coronary arteries much faster.
The biggest kick to investigators of the Minnesota Coronary Experiment as this was known, was to find that the principal investigator was Ancel Keys and this could be the reason for the results not being released or supposedly even tampered with until independent investigators eventually stepped in to see the studies.
The Big Fat Graph Lie:
Using the graph, Ancel Keys indicated how fat was responsible for the death of people with high fat consumption. However, the same graph was depicted using sugar and this shows exactly how sugar can have the exact same mortality rate as fat. Since Ancel Keys neglected to do studies on countries with fewer death related fat consumption, the graph was taken as truth.
Unfortunately, this has been disproved and with diabetes being a fatal killer, people are just as likely to die from sugar consumption as stated in the above-mentioned graph.
The Effect Of Fats On Dogs And Why It May Be Good For Them:
Recent studies have also suggested that fatty diets may be good for your dogs as well. The high-fat diet is generally referred to as the keto diet; and the keto diet for dogs might make a massive difference to the well-being of your dog in general. While we don’t recommend overindulging in fatty foods, having your dog on a controlled diet could definitely make a massive difference.
Benefits Of The Keto Diet For Dogs:
To help you see how the keto diet could be beneficial to your dog, we have done some in-depth research and with the help of some experts and studies, these are some of the real benefits you can expect with your dog on the ketogenic diet:
- Dogs may often suffer from epilepsy and to combat this, the British Medical Journal has recently released a study that indicated how the Keto diet can help prevent seizures in your dogs. This is much similar to the way it could help prevent seizures in adults as well.
- Rodney Habib, also recently released a study that indicated how cancer can be connected to high carbs. The pet nutrition expert revealed that instead of increasing the carbs for energy, increasing the fats can help prevent cancer in your pet.
- Improved levels of energy have also been found and this is due to the body converting fats into ketones much more rapidly. With the improved levels of ketones (short chain fats produced by the liver), your dog could have much more energy during the day.
While these may only seem like three benefits, there are no real dangers associated with the keto diet. Most of the meals found in the keto diet are all natural. This means the foods are naturally found and they are not processed as much. Since dogs are animals of nature, improving their natural diet will allow them to survive much longer.
If you have any worries about the effect of the diet on your dog, you can consult your veterinary expert; they should be able to give you clear and concise advise and help you to put your dog on the best possible diet. It is also worth noting that the keto diet can do wonders for you if you are looking to lose some weight as well.
The Keto Diet And Weight-loss: A Small Breakdown
Losing weight is always a problem for people and everyone wants to get rid of the excess weight they are carrying. The keto diet is one of the best ways to do. And since I have been training for many years, I have seen the effects of the keto diet. Using the keto diet has improved energy levels in the form of ketones as well.
When it comes to weight loss, it also forces the body to dig into the fat reserves and this can be converted into energy. Eventually, you will find yourself losing some of those excess body fats that you have been struggling with. Personally, I found myself losing around 40-pounds in just over two months. However, this was combined with vigorous exercise and consistency in what I do. Nevertheless, this is also possible for you.
The Ancel Keys “heart diet” hypothesis has been discredited with numerous studies and using this might be a good way for some. However, since all the results have been disproved, there is no reason for you to cut out fats. The keto diet has much more results showing better results for individuals as well as their dogs.
We would like to thank you for reading this article and encourage you to share some of your thoughts. Let us know in the comment section what you think of the keto diet.
COVER PHOTO CREDIT: Jorge Zapata