Everyone knows that saturated fat and cholesterol are bad for you. They cause heart attacks, right? Right? Wrong! This myth is so widespread that many people take it for granted, but, according to Dr. Ravnskov, it is actually based on flawed research.
One early example is the famous Ancel Keys, whose 1953 publication in The Lancet left out many of the countries that there were data available on. One of them was Mexico. In Mexico, fat consumption was high and the heart disease rate was low, so it was dropped from the results. The heart disease death rate in Mexico was six times lower than the rate in Finland, although the fat calories were almost identical.(Page 16)
Also, determining cause of death is not as clear cut as you might think. Often the cause of death listed on the death certificate is wrong.(Pages 17-18) This is discovered if an autopsy is done, but that's usually the exception. In addition, cultural differences often affect the doctor's diagnosis.(Pages 20-21) In Japan, heart attack death rates are supposed to be low, but that may be at least partially due to cultural prejudices. If a relative dies of a heart attack, that shames the family, but a stroke is considered honorable.
In this fascinating work, Dr. Ravnskov explains nine myths about cholesterol and heart disease. In the process, he exposes the flaws and misrepresentations in many studies. He also describes several little known, dangerous side effects of cholesterol medications. A thought-provoking, and maybe life-saving read.