Heart Surgeon Admits He was Wrong About Low Fat Diet and Heart Disease

Dr. Dwight Lundell

Dr. Dwight Lundell

Health Impact News, by Dr. Dwight Lundell, 03/01/15

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 labelled “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.

Despite the fact that 25% of the population takes expensive statin medications and despite the fact we have reduced the fat content of our diets, more Americans will die this year of heart disease than ever before.

Statistics from the American Heart Association show that 75 million Americans currently suffer from heart disease, 20 million have diabetes and 57 million have pre-diabetes. These disorders are affecting younger and younger people in greater numbers every year.

Simply stated, without inflammation being present in the body, there is no way that cholesterol would accumulate in the wall of the blood vessel and cause heart disease and strokes. Without inflammation, cholesterol would move freely throughout the body as nature intended. It is inflammation that causes cholesterol to become trapped.

Inflammation is not complicated — it is quite simply your body’s natural defence to a foreign invader such as a bacteria, toxin or virus. The cycle of inflammation is perfect in how it protects your body from these bacterial and viral invaders. However, if we chronically expose the body to injury by toxins or foods the human body was never designed to process,a condition occurs called chronic inflammation. Chronic inflammation is just as harmful as acute inflammation is beneficial.

What thoughtful person would willfully expose himself repeatedly to foods or other substances that are known to cause injury to the body?  Well,smokers perhaps, but at least they made that choice willfully.

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 recommended for years by mainstream medicine.

What are the biggest culprits of ? 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.

Take a moment to visualize rubbing a stiff brush repeatedly over soft skin until it becomes quite red and nearly bleeding. you kept this up several times a day, every day for five years. If you could tolerate this painful brushing, you would have a bleeding, swollen infected area that became worse with each repeated injury. This is a good way to visualize the inflammatory process that could be going on in your body right now.

Regardless of where the inflammatory process occurs, externally or internally, it is the same. I have peered inside thousands upon thousands of arteries. A diseased artery looks as if someone took a brush and scrubbed repeatedly against its wall. Several times a day, every day, the foods we eat create small injuries compounding into more injuries, causing the body to respond continuously and appropriately with inflammation.

While we savor the tantalizing taste of a sweet roll, our bodies respond alarmingly as if a foreign invader arrived declaring war. Foods loaded with sugars and simple carbohydrates, or processed with omega-6 oils for long shelf life have been the mainstay of the American diet for six decades. These foods have been slowly poisoning everyone.

How does eating a simple sweet roll create a cascade of inflammation to make you sick?

Imagine spilling syrup on your keyboard and you have a visual of what occurs inside the cell. When we consume simple carbohydrates such as sugar, blood sugar rises rapidly. In response, your pancreas secretes insulin whose primary purpose is to drive sugar into each cell where it is stored for energy. If the cell is full and does not need glucose, it is rejected to avoid extra sugar gumming up the works.

When your full cells reject the extra glucose, blood sugar rises producing more insulin and the glucose converts to stored fat.

What does all this have to do with inflammation? Blood sugar is controlled in a very narrow range. Extra sugar molecules attach to a variety of proteins that in turn injure the blood vessel wall. This repeated injury to the blood vessel wall sets off inflammation. When you spike your blood sugar level several times a day, every day, it is exactly like taking sandpaper to the inside of your delicate blood vessels.

While you may not be able to see it, rest assured it is there. I saw it in over 5,000 surgical patients spanning 25 years who all shared one common denominator — inflammation in their arteries.

Let’s get back to the sweet roll. That innocent looking goody not only contains sugars, it is baked in one of many omega-6 oils such as soybean. Chips and fries are soaked in soybean oil; processed foods are manufactured with omega-6 oils for longer shelf life. While omega-6’s are essential -they are part of every cell membrane controlling what goes in and out of the cell — they must be in the correct balance with omega-3’s.

If the balance shifts by consuming excessive omega-6, the cell membrane produces chemicals called cytokines that directly cause inflammation.

Today’s mainstream American diet has produced an extreme imbalance of these two fats. The ratio of imbalance ranges from 15:1 to as high as 30:1 in favor of omega-6. That’s a tremendous amount of cytokines causing inflammation. In today’s food environment, a 3:1 ratio would be optimal and healthy.

To make matters worse, the excess weight you are carrying from eating these foods creates overloaded fat cells that pour out large quantities of pro-inflammatory chemicals that add to the injury caused by having high blood sugar. The process that began with a sweet roll turns into a vicious cycle over time that creates heart disease, high blood pressure, diabetes and finally, Alzheimer’s disease, as the inflammatory process continues unabated.

There is no escaping the fact that the more we consume prepared and processed foods, the more we trip the inflammation switch little by little each day. The human body cannot process, nor was it designed to consume, foods packed with sugars and soaked in omega-6 oils.

There is but one answer to quieting inflammation, and that is returning to foods closer to their natural state. To build muscle, eat more protein. Choose carbohydrates that are very complex such as colorful fruits and vegetables. Cut down on or eliminate inflammation- causing omega-6 fats like corn and soybean oil and the processed foods that are made from them.

One tablespoon of corn oil contains 7,280 mg of omega-6; soybean contains 6,940 mg. Instead, use olive oil or butter from grass-fed beef.

Animal fats contain less than 20% omega-6 and are much less likely to cause inflammation than the supposedly healthy oils labelled polyunsaturated. Forget the “science” that has been drummed into your head for decades. The science that saturated fat alone causes heart disease is non-existent. The science that saturated fat raises blood cholesterol is also very weak. Since we now know that cholesterol is not the cause of heart disease, the concern about saturated fat is even more absurd today.

The cholesterol theory led to the no-fat, low-fat recommendations that in turn created the very foods now causing an epidemic of inflammation. Mainstream medicine made a terrible mistake when it advised people to avoid saturated fat in favor of foods high in omega-6 fats. We now have an epidemic of arterial inflammation leading to heart disease and other silent killers.

What you can do is choose whole foods your grandmother served and not those your mom turned to as grocery store aisles filled with manufactured foods. By eliminating inflammatory foods and adding essential nutrients from fresh unprocessed food, you will reverse years of damage in your arteries and throughout your body from consuming the typical American diet.

Dr. Dwight Lundell is the past Chief of Staff and Chief of Surgery at Banner Heart Hospital , Mesa , AZ. His private practice, Cardiac Care Center was in Mesa, AZ. Recently Dr. Lundell left surgery to focus on the nutritional treatment of heart disease. He is the founder of Healthy Humans Foundation that promotes human health with a focus on helping large corporations promote wellness. He is also the author of The Cure for Heart Disease and The Great Cholesterol Lie.

Read the Full Article along with comments here: http://preventdisease.com/news/12/030112_World-Renown-Heart-Surgeon-Speaks-Out-On-What-Really-Causes-Heart-Disease.shtml

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One response

  1. Senator_Blutarsky | Reply

    No surprise……….Doctors, medical and scientific are often wrong, and often deliberately. So many are as much FOR SALE as your politicians are.Most ” doctors” should wear jackets like NASCAR, so we can see who their sponsors are

    link has 2 video interviews-
    http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2015/03/15/altered-genes-twisted-truth-gmo-part-2.aspx?e_cid=20150315Z1_SNL_NB_art_1&utm_source=snl&utm_medium=email&utm_content=art1&utm_campaign=20150315Z1_SNL_NB&et_cid=DM70025&et_rid=876166095

    By Dr. Mercola

    Genetically engineered (GE) foods are a serious threat to our environment and our health.

    In this article, Steven Druker, author of Altered Genes, Twisted Truth, continues the fascinating story of how GMOs came into being and have been allowed to permeate our food supply through illegal means and without legally required safety testing.

    If you missed the first installment of this interview, you may want to read through Part 1 first.

    The subtitle of his book, How the Venture to Genetically Engineer Our Food Has Subverted Science, Corrupted Government, and Systematically Deceived the Public, is quite descriptive, and Steven has done a wonderful job of exposing this extraordinary fraud.

    Not only has he exposed it, but he’s also taken an activist role and actually sued the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in 1998 for their 1992 ruling in which they declared genetically modified organisms (GMOs) Generally Recognized as Safe (GRAS).

    That ’92 ruling serves as the foundation by which the biotechnology industry has been able to get away with this fraud. There’s so much information here, I strongly encourage you to get a copy of his book if you have any interest in this topic.

    It will give you a clear understanding of what the problems are and how we got to the point where we are now.

    Facts Overlooked by Federal Judge

    In part one of this interview, we reviewed his lawsuit against the FDA, and how the federal judge appointed to the case failed to rule in accordance to the law.

    “She actually ignored some very important evidence that was in the FDA files and that the attorneys and I presented,” Steven says.

    “We know that Congress certainly is not immune to special interest and to the money that can be thrown around. But the federal judiciary is supposed to be free of that.

    I cannot speculate as to the judge’s motivations other than when I read the opinion, I find it difficult to understand how such an opinion came out because there are some serious facts that were overlooked.”

    One of the main pieces of evidence that came straight from the FDA’s own files was a letter written by the FDA’s biotechnology coordinator, sent to a Canadian health official less than six months before the FDA announced its policy on GE foods.

    The FDA’s ruling in ’92 was that there is general recognition of safety because to the agency’s knowledge, there was an overwhelming consensus within the scientific community that these foods are safe—so safe in fact that they do not need to be tested.

    In that letter, however, the FDA’s biotechnology coordinator admitted that there was not a consensus about safety of these foods in the scientific community at large…

    In fact, FDA scientists had overwhelmingly concluded that GE foods present a different array of risks than their conventionally produced counterparts; that none of them can be presumed safe; and that they need to be demonstrated safe through rigorous testing, which also happens to be the law.

    “Both what the law was requiring and what the FDA’s own scientists, from their own analysis review, were recommending was the same thing: these foods cannot be presumed safe and they need to be tested,” Steven says.

    “Unfortunately, the decision makers of the FDA…who were far more under the influence of political and economic considerations than scientific ones, covered that up, and lied about it.

    They said they weren’t aware of any information showing that these foods differ in any meaningful or uniform way from other foods. The problem is that the judge should’ve factored that information in in a different way.

    She never mentioned that letter and that admission from the FDA’s biotechnology coordinator, although we have called it to her attention several times. There’s something strange when that happens.”

    Scientific Consensus Can by Law Not Be Based on Hypothesis or Speculation

    Another key aspect to the GRAS requirement as per US law, besides the general recognition of safety, is that there must be overwhelming consensus present within the scientific establishment, and that consensus cannot be based on hypotheses or speculation; it has to be based on solid evidence. In the case of GE foods, there is no such evidence.

    “The FDA’s own files contain the admission that they didn’t have any such evidence, on which they based their presumption that these foods were generally recognized as safe… Both of those criteria that are necessary failed abjectly.

    The FDA’s own files basically provide all the information the judge would have needed to have ruled that that was the case. Not only did she improperly not take account of the FDA’s scientist’s concerns and of that admission by the FDA biotechnology coordinator.

    She completely evaded the issue of whether the technical evidence was there—even though at the beginning of her opinion she acknowledged that that was one of the two prongs that had to be proven.

    And then she never came back to the issue even though we certainly drilled it home several times in the various submissions we made to the court. That’s why it’s very difficult to understand how this could’ve happened.”

    The Food Additives Amendment of 1958 was created to protect the public from potentially harmful substances added to foods, and this law specifically places the burden of proof on the manufacturers of new additives. This law presumes that all new additives are unsafe until proven safe.

    Astoundingly, the federal government has, over the years, slowly, surreptitiously, and illegally shifted that burden of proof—taking it off of the shoulders of the manufacturers, and placing it on consumers and critics. We now have to prove that GMOs are unsafe, which is absurd!

    Why the Appeal Was Dropped

    The FDA’s presumption that GMOs are GRAS is supposed to be rebuttable. (The judge even emphasized that the FDA had emphasized that fact.) In this case, the only way you can rebut a presumption made about GMOs in 1992 is with evidence that came out after 1992. Otherwise, you cannot rebut the presumptions. Here too, the judge did something absurd.

    “In 1998, we brought out solid evidence that rebutted [the presumption made in 1992], and… essentially, [the judge] said that ‘you have rebutted it, but this evidence is irrelevant.’ She made a rebuttable presumption irrebuttable and irrefutable by ignoring any evidence that we introduced after May of 1992. That was just another absurdity I want to make sure has been brought to the fore,” Steven says.

    An appeal was filed, but after the filing, the FDA announced that it was coming out with a new regulation on GE foods. The May 1992 policy statement was not a regulation. In fact, it didn’t regulate the biotech industry one iota. It was completely nonbinding. The FDA stated it would create new regulation requiring manufacturers to give prior notice before marketing a GE food in the US. No labeling or safety testing would be required, but it was still significant because it was a new regulation that would supersede the policy statement.

    “If we brought a lawsuit against that new regulation, all of the evidence we had brought in 1998 that the judge excluded would have to be relevant, because the FDA knew of it in early 2001 when they issued that preliminary regulation. So, they issued a regulation and they called for comments. It looked like they were actually seriously going to enact the regulation.

    On the last possible day to drop an appeal, we dropped the appeal because it appeared it would be a waste of time. The intelligent thing to do would be to wait for the new regulation and sue on it, [so that] all of the evidence the judge excluded would be relevant, and the FDA would clearly lose. There was no way they could’ve won… But then, in the spring of 2003, more than two years later, the FDA announced that they were putting that [regulation] on the back burner…

    That regulation never moved beyond the proposed state. They basically backtracked to the safety of the May 1992 policy statement that had already been upheld in court, and they stayed with that. That’s where we still are today.”

    Claim of Scientific Consensus on GMO Safety Is Patently FALSE

    The 1992 FDA policy statement, which was invalid when it was made, has been repeatedly rebutted and refuted, and yet that policy statement is still the sole purported legal basis for the presence of GE foods in the US. The FDA knew the legal criteria of their policy had not been fulfilled, and today there’s even more evidence of conflict and disagreement within the scientific community. In fact, on January 24, a statement signed by 300 scientists, researchers, physicians and scholars was published in the peer-reviewed journal Environmental Sciences Europe,1 asserting that there is no scientific consensus on the safety of GMOs.

    Moreover, the paper, titled “No Scientific Consensus on GMO Safety,” states that the claim of scientific consensus on GMO safety is in actuality “an artificial construct that has been falsely perpetuated.” The paper also notes that such a claim “is misleading and misrepresents or outright ignores the currently available scientific evidence and the broad diversity of scientific opinions among scientists on this issue.”

    In addition, the FDA still does not possess any evidence demonstrating safety because they do not even do scientific reviews. And even if they did, a large number of scientists say there’s still no evidence demonstrating that GE foods are safe, while a number of independent studies have raised serious health concerns. Quite clearly, there is NOT a “general recognition of safety among scientists,” and these foods are on the market illegally. They were illegal when they were first introduced in 1992, and they continue to be illegal now in 2015.

    “One of the nation’s most important and most venerable consumer safety statutes, consumer protection laws, has been blatantly and intentionally violated by the agency that’s supposed to uphold it, and they’ve been getting away with it all these years,” Steven says. “It’s time to really pull the rug out from under the whole thing, because the evidence is overwhelming. All people have to do is just read it.”

    What Geneticists Could Learn from Computer Scientists

    Besides analyzing genetic engineering from the standpoint of biological science, there’s another important field of science that is relevant to the discussion of GMO safety, and that is information technology and computer science, especially software engineering. The reason for this is because genetic engineers are taking huge and very complex information systems (the genome), and they are making radical revisions to it based on a very deficient knowledge base.

    “There is so much about the genome of the plants that they are reconfiguring, of which they are unaware,” Steven says. “It’s well-known that the genomes of plants and animals are by far the biggest, most complex, and most intricately interrelated information systems on our planet. They dwarf any manmade system… And yet, when we look at the experience of computer science and the lessons that have been learned the hard way over many years… there’s no way to safely revise it. Or I should say, no way to revise it in a way that can be presumed to be safe.”

    Computer scientists have learned that they cannot assume that a revision only changes what they wanted it to change. Even if it was very precisely done and very minor, they have to presume that it might have unintended effects. This is especially true when that program is a life-critical program—one of the programs that if it were to fail is more than just an annoying crash of your word processing program; it could be a crash of a jetliner, or it could be the malfunction of an X-ray machine. In fact, Steven notes there have been fatal accidents with radiation machines in which a minor problem in the revision of the computer code led to the death of patients who received the wrong radiation dose.

    “Certainly, it doesn’t take much imagination to know what could go wrong if there’s a bug in the airplane guiding system. The plane can go down. That’s why any revision made to such life-critical software systems has to go through rigorous testing after each revision. And put not only through the tests that were done beforehand, but a new battery of tests that weren’t even done when that system was first approved.

    But there’s nowhere near the same parallel kind of testing in the case of genetically engineered food. Nowhere near it. Even the most rigorous tests that have been done on the genetically engineered food fall far short of the rigor with which life-critical software programs are tested after every revision…

    The genetic engineers cannot control where the packet of new genetic information (the DNA) is going. It’s randomly inserted. It’s a radical revision in several other ways too. They have very little understanding about those informational systems, because after all, they didn’t design them. We know that they’re far more complex and far more intricately interrelated than any human-made software…

    And yet, they’re making the assumption that they can presume that what they’re doing will have only introduced the one change they want and will have not disrupted anything else in a deleterious manner. That is—from the standpoint of computer science—insanity. It’s certainly reckless… I think anybody listening who knows something about software engineering should definitely dig into that chapter and start sharing it with your colleagues, because I think that can catch the imagination of the entire Internet information technology community.

    That community obviously is not anti-technology. They embrace cutting-edge technology, but they’ve also learned that when you’re doing cutting-edge technology, you also have to be aware of the risks and you have to do testing to help minimize unintended consequences. They’ve learned the lesson about unintended consequences.”

    The Media Has Promulgated Lies and Failed to Do Due Diligence

    The reason Steven wrote the book was to get all the evidence out there, and I am currently in discussions with filmmakers to see if we can turn Steven’s book into a documentary or wide-media series. If you’re listening to this interview and have connections, let me know, and we’ll see if we can make something happen. There’s undoubtedly an important need for this, as the conventional media is clearly corrupted by multinational corporate interests and the persuasive molecular biologist community as discussed in part one.

    When promoting his book, Steven would travel to all sorts of media events, interviews would be done, and then one of two things would happen; either the journalist didn’t publish the report, or they spun it to make him look foolish. The media also failed to report on the matter back in 1998, when the lawsuit against the FDA was filed.

    “There is an entire chapter devoted to the malfunction of the American media, and the subtitle I believe is ‘Compliance and Accomplice in Cover up and Fraud’ or something to that effect. Because unfortunately, the mainstream American media have behaved very badly when it comes to genetically engineered food. Certainly, the way they’ve treated the lawsuit and the FDA files that it brought to light is a case study in irresponsibility.

    There have been several instances in which I have given information, key memos from the FDA files, to investigative journalists… who work for mainstream journals and mainstream newspapers. They wanted to do something with it, and it gets shut down by the editors. Or the journalists themselves weren’t interested.”

    US Has Strong Food Safety Laws, But Those Laws Are Being Violated

    Many Americans believe the reason the US has so many GMOs permeating our marketplace while other nations, including the European Union (EU) does not, is because the US has stronger, more rigorous regulations ensuring safety. While this should be a correct assumption in theory, it’s not based in actual reality. Because, as Steven’s book points out, while the US does have some of the strongest food safety laws in the world, those laws are being violated.

    And they were violated from the very beginning. In fact, GMOs are on the market because our food safety laws have been illegally circumvented. The EU is not fully upholding its laws either. The precautionary principle is supposed to be the guiding principle in European Food Safety law. The European Commission has emphasized that several times. But in the case of GE foods, they are not following a precautionary approach—instead they’re being quite lax; and part of the problem is the general belief that the US has done the necessary legwork.

    The US media has also played a significant role in allowing this fraud to be perpetuated without backlash. In more recent years, the European media has become more like the media in the US, but in the ‘90s and the early 2000s, the European media was very open to reporting problems about genetically engineered foods. Most importantly, they would quote scientists who were voicing concerns, and that had a huge effect on the consumers.

    “It was the consumers that made it clear to the major grocery chains that they would not buy genetically engineered food. Several major grocery chains made it clear to the manufacturers that they would not buy them either because the consumers didn’t want them.

    That essentially stopped genetically engineered foods from getting directly into the human food chain in the European Union. It was consumer understanding, not consumer ignorance, but consumers being informed by the media who reported about courageous scientists who have spoken up [that created the] public backlash. That never happened in the US… That’s important to understand.”

    Misrepresentations by Molecular Biologists Led to the Creation of One of the Biggest Frauds in History

    Ultimately, the blame for this fraud has to be put at the feet of the molecular biology establishment—the main scientific establishment in the live sciences—which Steven discussed in Part 1 of this interview. His book goes into this part of history in great detail, demonstrating how the aggregate misinformed statements about the science behind GMOs and their purported safety were born back in the early 1970s when genetic engineering was first established. Within the context of the history of science, GE foods is one of the biggest and most pernicious frauds ever committed by scientists, and it began with molecular biologists who wanted to protect the budding science of genetic engineering by whitewashing potential concerns.

    In the 12th chapter of Steven’s book, “Unfounded Foundational Presumptions,” he shows that even when the evidence goes against the genetic engineers of today, they always fall back on some of those initial presumptions made by the molecular biology establishment—presumptions about genetic engineering being a safe enterprise—and they never really acknowledge that those presumptions have been solidly refuted.

    “One of the key ones of those, which I think is important to bring out, is that somehow, no matter how unruly and unpredictable somebody can demonstrate genetic engineering to be, they will always say, ‘Well, conventional breeding is worse. Nature is far more random, unruly, and risky.’ That is a very important point to bring out, because there are so many Americans who probably, just as a matter of course, believe what they’re being told about this.

    They don’t understand that that is actually a foundational assumption—that you can’t actually trust food that’s been here for a long, long time; that nature is somehow being slandered and disparaged as being far more unruly, unpredictable, and dangerous. Every act of pollination is somehow supposed to be at least as risky, if not riskier, and more unpredictable than these radical insertions of foreign genetic material into soybeans, corn, and zucchinis. That I found to be gross slander against nature. I think more and more people need to understand that.”

    More Information

    To get the full story, to truly understand how GE foods became the status quo by illegal means and why we need to abandon genetic engineering in agriculture, please pick up a copy of Steven’s book, Altered Genes, Twisted Truth: How the Venture to Genetically Engineer Our Food Has Subverted Science, Corrupted Government, and Systematically Deceived the Public. You can also visit his site, Alliance for Bio-integrity.

    He also plans to publish a free executive summary of the book online, so look for it on his website: AlteredGenesTwistedTruth.com. The site also provides all of the key FDA documents discussed in this interview. Truly, Steven has given the world a phenomenal gift through this work, and his book is really an indispensable resource on the topic of GMOs.

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