I do want to say I admire vegans and vegetarians on many levels: moral, environmental, etc. But I do think they tend to not look at diet and health objectively. They kind of put blinders on that their way is also better health wise. And it does have many compelling health benefits. And veggies are at the top of my list of foods.
But humans however much someone might wish it did not evolve as vegetarians. And we also did not evolve to eat grain. Going grain free and low carb is so rare that first there are no studies linking heart disease and saturated fats. And b most studies look at people on high carb low fat and compare them to high carb high fat. Commonality? High carb, which changes how your body works in general. Low carb high fat populations around the world, especially using natural grass fed fats from animals are extremely healthy with very low rates of heart disease.
I found this Q and A with Jeff Volek fascinating. I love the you are not what you eat but what you have left over after you eat. When I was high carb so many carbs were being stored as fat. Now on low fat, my nice nutritious fats protect my body then get burned off.
Dr. Volek: Carbs control insulin and insulin controls lipid (fat) burning for fuel. So, in our work, what we’ve shown, is that even though you’re eating more saturated fat on a low carb diet, perhaps 2-3 times the amount, the amount of saturates in your blood goes down because you’re body prefers to burn saturated fat as fuel.
Many people like to embrace the common aphorism, “You are what you eat,” but this is clearly not true, instead, “You are what you save from what you eat.” And when you’re on a low carb diet, your body is preferentially oxidizing fat for fuel, so you’re not storing it or accumulating it in cells, arteries, or fat stores. So if anything, dietary carbs are more related to increasing membrane levels of saturated fat. Dietary saturated fat has little correlation with the level of saturated fat in the body.
Dave: That’s a huge shift in paradigm because a lot of people don’t realize this and believe saturated fat causes heart disease.
Dr. Volek: Not just a lot of people, about 90% of medical professionals and even lipid researchers find this mind boggling.
Dave: To me, it makes total sense. If you’re insulin is up from too many carbs, then your body will respond with elevated saturates in the blood. So it makes sense.
Dr. Volek: It really threatens about 40 years of dietary policy that has been obsessed with the idea dietary fat increases your risk for heart disease. Rather than get stronger over time, if anything, the evidence has gotten weaker and weaker for this outdated hypothesis.
I also found this Vegan's appraisal of coconut oil: