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Vibrant health means you can live life to the fullest. Empower yourself with the steps I used to free my life of chronic disease and medications.

Reader Interactions


    • I don’t disagree either, but this is an incomplete discussion. I think those of us who support this view, which I do, have to be careful to provide fuller, more detailed explanations. It’s still a controversial subject and while I appreciate the sentiment of offering an easy-to-read, condensed version, it’s a little too simplistic for a complex subject with multiple variables. Not disagreeing, but urging a more painstakingly detailed discussion!

      • its not controverisal, theres plenty of evidence supporting this, its the same with the saturated fat myth thats been debunked, coconut oil for exmaple is mostly saturated fat yet its health benefits are enormous, old unsubstantiated science is outdated now, and agendas arent at play. low fat no fat industry was ctreated on the back o scare tatics and unproven science, its been to the detriment of the popluation as oppossed to benefit…

      • I find this simple description of the process perfect for many audiences. There are a number of people I have talked to about this and to be honest, their eyes glaze over and they switch off if given too much detail. This article would be enough for many of those to understand and to take onboard sufficient information to make changes in attitude. I enjoy reading and listening to hour long lectures in detail, but so many don’t.

  1. You’re awesome, Lauren. Thank you for the knowledge you share with your readers, some of whom seem to be very picky and critical indeed. I’ve learned through reading your blog and comments that vegans are some of the nastiest people on earth. Keep on keeping on, and God bless you.

    • Leonard, thank you so much for your kind and encouraging words! It is disappointing when I receive comments that attack me, but I’ve learned to accept that their words do not reflect on my mission here – it only reflects the author’s own struggles. And I try to look at it from the perspective that if I had a vegan blog, I would think from my blog comments that many paleo-dieters are unpleasant people.

    • I was really enjoying this article, and the blog in general, until I read this (Leonard’s) comment. As I vegan (an open-minded one, I’d like to think), I find this comment extremely sad and insulting. I don’t know what comments are being referred to (they don’t seem to be on this page), but to label an entire group of people – millions of people worldwide, representing a vast array of religions, ethnicities, and nationalities – as the “nastiest on earth” is prejudiced (it seems like maybe you already had an opinion of vegans that you just wanted validated, without getting to know any in real life?). Most people go vegan because they believe that all life is sacred, they don’t want to hurt or kill anyone, no matter the species, and generally just want to spread more love in the world. How can that be “nasty” under any definition of the word? This has totally put me off reading any more from this blog, sadly.

      • Charlotte, can you help me better understand why a comment would influence your support of a blog that you have enjoyed? Especially since the blog author thanked the comment provider but also pointed out how important perspective is? Thanks.

  2. Lauren, this article is well-researched, well-written, and so on point. I, myself, can attest to much of what you have written through my own experiences. I have genetically high cholesterol that runs in pretty much everyone on my dad’s side of the family. As a teenager I would get my cholesterol levels checked and always had very high total cholesterol, a poor LDL to HDL ratio, and insanely high levels of triglycerides. During this time I had a pretty nutrient-lacking diet and consumed a lot of junk and processed foods. Once I became healthier in my eating and exercise, my cholesterol levels came down a bit, but my LDL-HDL ratio was still not ideal. When I started my journey with GAPS/AIP a year ago I expected my cholesterol levels to sky rocket due to the high fat (especially saturated fat) content of my healing diet.

    I just did my full blood work to check in on all of this. My total cholesterol did increase by 50 points, which is quite significant BUT 90% of the increase was in my HDL, which brought my ratio to what is considered perfectly healthy. I did this while eating butter, coconut oil, full fat cheese, grass-fed red meat, etc daily. I know my body had been suffering from inflammation for a long time and that’s probably a reason my LDL was always so high. My body was trying to heal itself, but I wasn’t giving my body a good enough diet to heal. Once I switched to AIP/GAPS, including plenty of whole fats, and gave myself the space to heal, my HDL levels went up, just as you describe here in your post.

    The health world needs more articles on cholesterol like the one you have written to reverse a lot of the misconceptions out there.

  3. We rely on blog posts like this one to help us understand health issues in more simplistic terms. There’s always more that can be said. I recently read an article on the possibility of sending space shuttles into space that don’t require thrust from standard fuel sources. Lots more could have been said about that, but why? It was written for a specific audience and did a great job of it. Discussions were triggered, people learned, and those who dare to brave deeper research probably did just that.

    Thanks, Lauren, for your good work!

  4. It would have been better if you had actually distinguished between blood lipids (LDL and HDL etc) and what they carry, protein, cholesterol , amino acids etc, so that people don’t get further confuse about what they are being told by their doctor, incorrectly.

    LDL and HDL are not cholesterol , they are the transport, bit like a bus, with cholesterol being a passenger .

    Oh and you could mention that blood lipids repair cell membranes, think repair heart disease if the cause is taken away( stress, omega 6 fatts etc), and possibly mean less dementia, as 25% of the bodies cholesterol ( yes I mean that) is found in the brain.

    We didn’t evolve some 2.5m years ago on bread, pasta, sugar and wheat! We ate animals, and lots of them.

    Tea tomorrow in our house? Full fat slow cooked oxtail with a few root veggies, the kids go mad for the cooked fat.

    Yesterday’s tea? Slow cooked belly pork, bones and all.

    Roll in more HFLC!


    Steve W – UK.

  5. This is a misguided article. You are claiming that small LDL:s are the only ones to worry about, but this is wrong. Later studies have shown that all particles are atherogenic, and the large ones are slightly worse, per particle.

    Small dense particles are associated with insulin resistance, and insulin resistance is associated with increased progression of atherosclerosis of other reasons besides increased number of LDL particles. Diabetics’ artery walls are more permeable and they are less able to deal with oxidized LDL, AGE:s and ROS. They have other problems besides small LDL:s.

    Eating saturated fat will not remedy this situation. This will only result in jamming your LDL particles with more cholesterol, and increase your LDL particle number even more (that’s not to say it’s a good thing to eat refined carbs).

    A comparison of LDL with ambulances is juvenile. SFA increases particle number by reducing LDL receptor activity on cells in the body. This does not have any type of healing property, but will only result in more cholesterol hanging around in your arteries, not reaching their goal. Cutting out junk food, reducing saturated fat, eating complex carbs and healthy fats from whole foods, exercising and other life style factors is what reduces insulin resistance, increases LDL receptor activity, decreases all LDL particles and CVD risk.

  6. Well Done Lauren! Well written and researched. Me and my family and many of my patients follow the no carb high fat Paleo lifestyle and this all makes so much sense.

    It is these kind of articles that we use in our Chiropractic practice to educate our patients to follow a healthy diet – rather than the out of date ( head in the sand) diets espoused by the heart foundations!

    Thank you
    Dr.Greg Miles D.C.

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Lauren Geertsen, NTP

I’m an author, entrepreneur, and nutritional therapy practitioner (NTP). I began this website at 19, to share the steps that freed my life of chronic disease and medication. Now, Empowered Sustenance has reached 30 million readers with healthy recipes and holistic resources.

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