Podcast Episode #73: What Your Doctor Doesn’t Tell You About Cholesterol.

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Click here for the full written transcript of this podcast episode

This December 16, 2009 free audio episode features the following topics: organic food labeling, low blood sugar in athletes, buffering lactic acid, and what your doctor may not tell you about cholesterol. But before you go any further in the shownotes…check this out…

Final note before we get the shownotes…for the next 6 weeks, the podcasts from Ben Greenfield Fitness will primarily focus on “Listener Q&A's”, due to Ben's undertaking of a huge triathlon-focused side project that is going to bring you over 12 free live teleconferences with triathlon pros and coaches over the next 6 weeks! For more information on that project, and to stay in the loop on what's going on with that project (called the Rock Star Triathlete Academy) simply go to http://www.rockstartriathlete.com.


Listener Q&A:

Do you have a question for Ben? Just click Ask a Podcast Question at the bottom of this page and leave a voicemail, leave a Skype voicemail to username “pacificfit”, or e-mail [email protected].

Listener David asks: “I listened to podcast #52 and recently viewed the film Food, Inc. My question is around the labeling of “organic”.  In food stores many products are labeled organic with a USDA certification stamp.  I am a little cautious of gov't certifications.  For example, I am aware of and you have spoken about how food manufacturers manipulate the serving size and such which allows them to claim no trans fat, when in fact there is trans fat in the ingredients.  Being able to claim something and manipulate rules is common when dealing with any gov't agency, such as the USDA.  How accurate is “organic” labeling in our food supply?  Could there really be GMO and other bad ingredients in the organic labeled food that has been hidden due to rules which allow not reporting of such ingredients and methods of farming not considered organic in the true sense of the term?  Thanks.”

Listener Payam asks: “Hey Ben, I have a question regarding low blood sugar.  I am a 23 year old male. I recently went to my doctor and took a blood test.  It wasn't for any particular reason, but my parents just suggested that it would be good to get some data on file because of family history.  Anyways, I gave some blood samples and was waiting for the doc in the room.  All of a sudden, a nurse comes into the room and looks at me and asks if I am okay.  She looked very worried, and I told her that I am fine.  She said that my blood sugar is dangerously low.  I believe it was like 35 or so.  I told her that I feel normal.  She asked what I had for breakfast and I told her that I had an omellete with onions, peppers, and tomatoes.  She asked me if I would drink an orange juice because it would “make her feel much better” which I agreed to.  Anyways, I would assume that this low blood sugar wasnt some sort of fluke because I honestly felt totally normal.  I generally eat almost no sugar.  My diet consists of lots of vegetables, grass fed beef, poultry, fish, eggs, nuts and nut butters, grass fed dairy.  The only grains I really eat are ezekiel breads and cereals, quinoa, and steel cut
oats.  I am a marathon runner and have had no problems with low energy.  I dont really eat that much fruit although probably a few servings a week. Usually when I do eat fruit, I eat it only around workouts.  When I do have dessert for a special occasion, it is usually after dinner when more fat and fiber has been consumed so it probably has a minimum effect on blood sugar anyways. I never really thought about this, and its not like I am trying to minimize my sugar intake.  I just try to eat healthy and unprocessed foods that I enjoy.  However, am i doing more harm than good? What are the dangers of hypoglycemia or low blood sugar?”

Listener Eric asks: “Ben, I have read and heard a lot about ‘pills’ that you can take during an endurance race that are supposed to help keep your PH levels alkaline.  Obviously, keeping Ph levels more on the alkaline side is good for endurance racing, but do any of them really do what they claim to?  I’ve seen “PhIT Pills”, Race Caps by Hammer, Bata Alanine products, etc….do any of them really work?”

One of Ben's coached triathletes asks: “Have just recently gone for my “WELCOME TO MEDICARE” physical and the doctor wants me to check out LDL lowering as a preventive since there's a family history.  Your most recent recommendations are for more animal products (red meat) and unfortunately I'll have to try to avoid them.  I will have to find a “fine line” where I can get naturally occurring protein and at the same time eat to provide good energy/muscle building sources in order to move forward  in my training (should be interesting).  Since I am one of your “SENIOR ATHLETES”, it may be of help to you to have me struggling with these little “roadblocks” .  Hope you will remain open to training  “BOOMERS” in the future!”


That's all for this week! Remember, if you have any trouble listening, downloading, or transferring to your mp3 player just e-mail [email protected]. And don't forget to leave the podcast a ranking in iTunes – it only takes 2 minutes of your time and helps grow our healthy community! Just click here to go to our iTunes page and leave feedback. Upcoming episodes include expert interviews on Liquid Vitamins, and Optimizing Biomechanical Movement Patterns During Exercise. Finally, remember all the time put into producing this podcast for you, and consider donating to our show, we’ll throw in a free T-shirt or your choice of any of the BenGreenfieldFitness active singlets, hoodies and hat pictured below and available in our new store.

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2 thoughts on “Podcast Episode #73: What Your Doctor Doesn’t Tell You About Cholesterol.

  1. Chip says:

    The topic of cholesterol is very interesting and I’d love to hear more. I don’t know if magnets are the answer but my doctor and I have been looking for something for years that will help with mine. I can’t take statins and diet and exercise only get me down to 330. My LDL is fine but my HDL is off the charts high. So, to push on one of the questions posed in this podcast, is high cholesterol really a problem? Or, is it a problem that big pharma is selling us?

  2. Clif says:

    I thought this finding presented in the book “good calories, bad calories” was very interesting: the consumption of whole milk and other dairy products, as well as grass fed beef, caused a greater rise in “good” cholesterol versus “bad” cholesterol. That coupled with the notion that the ratio of good to bad cholesterol is more important in determining heart health than total cholesterol is, I think that consuming those fats is not an issue. (assuming one does actually eat dairy, of course) The book listed above really is a provacative read. By Gary taubes.

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