Inflammation Is Cause Of Heart Problems

Inflammation is the cause of heart problems, not cholesterol

You may have received this viral email about Dr. Dwight Lundell and his comment on inflammation and heart problems. I have received it many times. This email came back very timely when I was writing the article about sea buckthorn, omega 7 and inflammation. The main contention is that inflammation is the main cause of heart problems. Cholesterol is not the direct cause of heart problems. Inflammation causes cholesterol to be trapped in the blood vessel. Without inflammation, cholesterol will move freely throughout the body.

Inflammation explained in simple term

Inflammation is a natural body defence to a foreign element such as bacteria, toxin and virus. But if the body is exposed repeatedly to these elements by the foods we take, then a condition known as chronic inflammation will result. With chronic inflammation, cholesterol builds up around the vessel wall to protect it from further damage. And from here, it seems that cholesterol is the culprit causing heart problems. The cause is actually inflammation. Inflammation is the silent killer.

The food we eat triggers inflammation

Apparently we have been eating the wrong food which causes inflammation. Foods with highly processed carbohydrates such as sugar, flour, and related products made from them, cause inflammation. Vegetable oils like soybean, corn and sunflower have high level of Omega 6. Omega 6 oil is also used to prolong shelf life of products. Excessive intake of Omega 6 will cause inflammation. While Omega 6 is essential for our health, it must maintain a healthy balance with Omega 3. The recommended ratio balance is 1:1. The prevailing ratio amongst those who consume processed foods can be as high as 30 Omega 6 to 1 Omega 3!

More information about types of fats

I am always confused over the various types of fats or oils. So I spent a bit of time surfing the net again. I think this is the best explanation that I can get in layman’s language, and I like to share with you here.

There are three main types of fats which contain essentially the same elements including carbon and hydrogen.

1. Saturated fats : Fats which contain all the hydrogen they can hold, meaning they are fully saturated with hydrogen. These fats are solid at room temperature. Animal fats are saturated fats, such as butter and lard.

2. Unsaturated fats : These are fats that are not saturated with hydrogen and remain in liquid or oily form at room temperature. Most are plant based and are commonly called vegetable oils, such as corn oil and peanut oil. Polyunsaturated and monounsaturated fats are two types of unsaturated fats.

3. Trans fats : They are processed fats, through the technique called hydrogenation which involves the introduction of more hydrogen into the unsaturated fats, turning them into “saturated-like” solid fats. The resulting trans fats become more “stable” like the saturated fats while using the cheaper unsaturated fats. The danger of trans fats is that they increase fatty plaque formation in the arteries. They are worse than saturated fats as they raise LDL (bad) cholesterol level and at the same time reduce HDL (good) cholesterol level. At least, saturated fats do not lower HDL cholesterol level.

Then why using trans fats? Trans fats have commercial advantages that they increase shelf life, and stabilize flavours of foods. So you will find most manufactured food products with trans fats, such as cereals, cookies, candies, snack foods, chips, baked goods, salad dressings and fried foods.

What then? Just take it that excessive consumption of fats is not good for health. Stay clear of trans fats. Be careful of Omega 6-rich oils like soybean, corn and sunflower.

Proper diet is the answer

We can find “A to Z” information on what is the ideal diets. And if we probe further in the internet, we will most probably go crazy before we can even start with the “best” diet regime! Why? Because there are so many “experts” offering their best options supported by technical and scientific proofs, which are sometimes contrary to one another. Enough said.

Let’s return to basics, making life simpler and easier. Follow nature’s way. Yes, this is my final personal conclusion. We are the results of nature (some may disagree, never mind) and we should live in accordance with nature’s way. Forget about the technical and scientific terms present in foods.

Two simple rules to eat healthy

We only need two simple rules to choose healthy foods.

Rule #1 is to eat foods which are naturally available from nature. Top of the list in nature’s food chain for humans are fresh vegetables and fruits.

Rule #2 is to avoid eating processed foods.


Dr Weil’s Anti-inflammatory Food Pyramid

I find Dr. Weil’s “Anti-inflammatory Food Pyramid” to be reasonably useful. (See below for the Pyramid Chart.) The main foods recommended are fresh vegetables and fresh fruits. Then followed by whole grains, beans and legumes. The other healthy foods suggested up the chain are healthy fats, seeds, nuts, fish and seafood. I particularly like the part on fish and seafood as they are my favorites. The only precaution is to eat the right type of fish and seafood.

Whenever I eat in, I try my best to steam my food. I think this is the healthiest method to prepare food for consumption. Whether the culprit is cholesterol or inflammation, I leave it to the health experts.

To live healthy, my choice is, I repeat :

Rule #1 : Eat fresh vegetables and fresh fruits and all things natural

Rule #2 : Avoid processed and artificial foods especially those with preservatives and toxic additives.

One reminder; reduce intake of salt.

Dr Weil’s Anti-inflammatory Food Pyramid Chart

Breaking News!

Please view the youtube video below on the latest report on the real cause of cardiovascular disease, by Dr. Matthias Rath, dated 22 April, 2015.

Breakthrough towards the natural control of cardiovascular disease, Dr. Matthias Rath, 22-4-2015

Related links

For those who wish to read more on this topic on inflammation, here are the three links:

1. Dr. Dwight Lundell

2. Dr. Beverly Teter

3. Dr. Andrew Weil


The Omega Balance: Getting Smart about Inflammation - CBN.com

Forget Cholesterol, Inflammation's the Real Enemy - CBN.com

Anti-Inflammatories - Ginger and Turmeric

Link to my other interesting and beneficial articles

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Comments 4 comments

john000 profile image

john000 3 years ago from Superior, Arizona

I like your 2 rules. It is so much easier to follow through on a regimen if it is simple to remember. I was not aware of the argument over whether inflammation caused blockage or cholesterol. I figured it was cholesterol. That a person can eat cholesterol without harm if the veins and arteries are not inflamed is certainly an eye opener.

This article had a lot of good info. Thank you.


Good Guy profile image

Good Guy 3 years ago from Malaysia Author

Hi john000 ,

Thanks for reading and comment. Life can be simple if we want to make it simple.


dwelburn profile image

dwelburn 3 years ago from Chesterfield, UK

I absolutely agree that it is inflammation that is the underlying cause of heart disease, as well as many other diseases in the body. And you have explained it really well. Great hub.


Good Guy profile image

Good Guy 3 years ago from Malaysia Author

Thanks dwelburn

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