Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Plaque Builup

Hi Doc,

I just discovered your blog, and I'm liking it very much!

You mention in one of your posts that you want to see a Trig/HDL ratio that is 2 or less, and if it's higher you worry about a plaque rupture until it comes down (enter statins). Can you explain how lowering this ratio reduces the risk of a plaque rupture (as opposed to further plaque build-up)? Also, can switching to a low-carb diet reverse plaque build-up?


My answer;

Hi There!

Yes, I want a TG/HDL ration at or under 2 as this equates with a lower relative insulin level in the bloodstream. Now its not so much that this will lower the possibility of plaque rupture, it is more to prevent the further buildup of plaque, which increases the possibility of rupture. More plaque= higher probability of plaque rupture since there is more plaque within the arterial wall, which could rupture.

This goes for all arteries, not just the carotid or coronary.Since the plaque buildup comes from the transformation of sugar molecules into cholesterol, following a low carb diet will not give our bodies what it needs to create the plaque in the first place.

It's interesting that we have no studies which show that the fat/cholesterol in the diet has ever been linked to the plaque buildup within our arteries; but we do have studies that every carbon atom in cholesterol can come from sugar. Also, a review of the biochemical pathways reveals the direct way that a sugar molecule will be transformed to cholesterol.Also, the only thing that I've seen significantly raise the good cholesterol, the HDL, has been the consumption of more saturated fat/cholesterol in our diet.

The whole system, and all the organizations promoting low fat/low cholesterol are so bass ackwards, it'd amazing we all aren't dropping dead from heart disease...oh, wait a minute we are...

Dunno if a low carb diet will reverse plaque buildup, no studies I know about, but it will certainly halt the creation and buildup of anymore plaques and this will be very advantageous for us.

Hope this helped!

Thanks for the questions!

dr jim

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  1. Hi Jim

    Great article.

    I was wondering.. How much sugar does the body need to make this plaque? Can the sugar from gluconeogenesis (from 'more protein') be enough to cause plaque build up and if so, will more dietary fat or cholesterol balance it out somehow and cause the plaque not to build up - because of the dietary cholesterol that inhibits blood cholesterol to form?


  2. Where can I read more bout how coholesterol can be made out of sugar?
    thank so much.

    Rabbi Hirsch Meisels