Great Cholesterol Myth

Let us see what Dr Malcom Kendrick has got to say on cholesterol control and heart disease citing from the famous Framingham Heart Study , one of the most respected and longest run heart studies ever..I particularly urge those who quote ADA guidelines for fat restrictions to read the excerpt from Dr Malcom's article reproduced below:

Cholesterol is not bad ..It is not the cause for heart disease either. It is very essential for the functioning of brain and body cells.World mortality statistics released by WHO says that the mortality rate in world population due to cardiovascular disease is the lowest among the population having TC in the range 200-220 mg/dl. Pl note ADA / AHA reference value is 200 ( max) !


To give another example of facts that aren't true. Namely, that saturated fat intake raises cholesterol levels. The Framingham study, the longest lasting, most respected study into the causes of heart disease (started in 1948) reported that ‘In Framingham, Massachusetts, the more saturated fat one ate, the more cholesterol one ate, the more calories one ate, the lower people's serum cholesterol.' Dr William Castelli - director of the Framingham study at the time - 1992.

What was the effect of such a startling finding. Absolutely nothing at all. Complete silence. To quote Winston Churchill: 'Men occasionally stumble over the truth, but most of them pick themselves up and hurry off as if nothing had happened.' How true.

More recently, a major eight year long interventional study on fifty thousand women (the Woman's Health Intervention) found that a 25% reduction in saturated fat intake had no effect on LDL ‘bad cholesterol' levels, or heart disease rates. [One of many studies that have shown the same thing].

Commenting on this study, the director of the National Heart Lung and blood Institute stated that: ‘The results of this study do not change established recommendations. Women should work with their doctors to reduce their risks for heart disease including following a diet low in saturated fat, trans fat and cholesterol.' Never let the facts get in the way of a good recommendation, I say.

The cholesterol hypothesis is, perhaps, the greatest ever example of a medical hypothesis that has become too powerful to die. Too many vested interests are intertwined with it. World famous experts would look incredibly stupid if the hypothesis were to be accepted to be wrong. An entire industry of cholesterol lowering would fall apart. Hundreds of billions of dollars of statin sales are at stake. Worse, much worse, the medical profession would end up with a few million eggs on its face. Perish the thought. Much better that millions die, surely.

In fact, I have come to realize that there is, literally, no evidence that can dent the cholesterol hypothesis. Believe me, I have had a good go. For example, here is another quote from the Framingham study on the impact of cholesterol levels themselves. There is a direct association between falling cholesterol levels over the first 14 years of the study and mortality over the following 18 years. 11% overall and 14% CVD death rate increase per 1mg/dl per year drop in cholesterol levels

In short, once your cholesterol level starts to fall, you are much more likely to die from heart disease. A 150% increase in relative risk for every 10 % fall, approximately. Add this to another very big study of the elderly, published in the Lancet: Our data accord with previous findings of increased mortality in elderly people with low serum cholesterol levels, and show that long term persistence of low cholesterol concentration actually increases the risk of death. Thus, the earlier that patients start to have lower cholesterol concentrations the greater the risk of death.

The effect of this study on the cardiovascular research community you would expect...nothing at all. A deafening silence. Cholesterol continues to be demonised as the terror, killer substance. Statins are pushed more and more widely to lower cholesterol levels even further. When I tell people that the higher their cholesterol level they longer they will live, they look at me in a way that suggests they believe that my medication is clearly not working.

Now that I know that cholesterol has nothing to do with heart disease, and that lowering it with statins is a complete waste of time, I find myself in the position of the little boy who points out that the Emperor has no Clothes. With one rather important difference.

Even though the ‘experts' have been made aware of it many times, they care not that this particular emperor has no clothes. Or, to be more accurate, they cannot and will not allow themselves to accept that it might be true. For to accept this would be far too humiliating for the great and the good. Which, I suppose, is why people become so enraged when anyone dares to point out the truth.

It is a slight comfort to know that in fifty years (hopefully many fewer than this), people will look back at cholesterol lowering and say ‘You did WHAT?' Were you MAD? Don't you know that cholesterol is absolutely vital for human health? Didn't you realise that blocking cholesterol synthesis would directly lead to nerve cell damage, muscle destruction, liver obliteration and cancer?

‘My God, you presided over the greatest iatrogenic medical disaster ever.' I, of course, will probably be dead by then. But at least I will not have poisoned my metabolism with statins.

Malcolm Kendrick (MbChB MRCGP) M.D.

Dr. Kendrick has worked in family practice for almost twenty years.

He has specialized in heart disease and set up the on-line educational website for the European Society of Cardiology.

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12 Replies

  • Book written by Dr. Malcom Kendrick "The Great Cholesterol Con" covers the topic in detail. As per the book the main cause of the CVD is stress.

  • Thank you for the complimentary info. In fact I read Dr Kendrick's articles at, the site you have sent

  • The book is available on flipkart in both paper and ebook format.

    The controversial issue of cholesterol must be discussed and people must know the truth.

  • Google search reveals that there is another book with the same title "Great Cholesterol Con" written by Anthony Colpo.. Is it the same person ?


  • No he is Dr. Malcom Kendrick. I have read the book.

  • 30 billion dollar STATIN Industry's foundation is laid on this concept. Given the amount of money that's involved in Statin drugs also how can anyone agree that SAFA is good. I have ramped up my CO intake to 3 TBSP/day and will see how LIPIDS behave after 5 months of literally drinking 45ml CO/day :)

    They will keep ranting that SAFA is bad.

    To maximize profits now the lobby and press is against Vitamins and Fish Oil Supplements. This lead to a dismal financial performance of GNC in the US in it's last quarter. Anything that gets in way of profits of the lobby is going to be under attack and Junk Science will be used to prove it.

  • For those who may be interested to get a gist:

  • And here are other studies which dispel the MYTH:

    Saturated Fat is great! It's the High Carb Low Fat nonsense that Kills!

  • Sweden is so advanced that one can get LCHF menu even in Highway restaurants !!

  • Fat phobia has plagued the world so much that even international airlines consider it appropriate to include in diabetic diet refined carbs and trans-fat like bun, margarine, low fat biscuits and dairy products and no BUTTER .. No wonder that Dr Kendrick predicts that it will take another 50 years for the myth to be debunked . In the meanwhile millions will perish of diabetic complications due to carb- enriched diet

  • Yes i read about airlines diabetic meals. Most diabetic forums have good number of LCHF followers and are enjoying good health. Others can keep munching CARBS and eating pills like peanuts and keep deteriorating and keep finding excuses for doing so. Their body their choice :)

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