give up my square of dark chocolate?

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adventure
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give up my square of dark chocolate?

Postby adventure » Fri Apr 22, 2016 10:57 pm

I was able to drop my really high cholesterol to 234 but my LDL is still above the recommended limit. My daily square of 86% dark chocolate has 3.5g of saturated fat.

I always thought dark chocolate was good for the heart but is that true if you have an E4? Should I give this up in an effort to lower my LDL?

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Re: give up my square of dark chocolate?

Postby Stavia » Fri Apr 22, 2016 11:45 pm

Adventure this is a really good question. Do the antioxidant and good thingies outweigh the saturated fat?
I don't think anyone knows.
I guess you could do a trial with and without to see if it makes a difference in you.
Personally I've given up so much, I still eat it and it's my biggest source of saturated fat.

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Re: give up my square of dark chocolate?

Postby apod » Sat Apr 23, 2016 12:06 am

What's your total intake of SFA/d (or %kcal as SFA) ? Right now, I usually do around 1-2x small squares of 90-100% @ ~3-6g SFA / serving. I tend to get more SFA from olive oil, macadamia, and avocado (currently, I eat a little under an ounce of saturated fat per day as I've been more active.) Eventually, I'll retest lipids and see if I need to re-evaluate this. I would look into LDL-P & Small-LDL, while you're trying to figure this out.

There still seems to be a good amount of confusion and debate over how much SFA intake might affect overall cardiovascular risk. I believe some E4's are consuming supplemental SFA (MCT / Coconut oil) for health benefits. I'm hoping that the potential risk from a moderate saturated fat intake relates to outside genetic / epigenetic / dietary factors beyond just possessing an E4 allele, or that it's related to animal-derived SFA (although animal-derived saturated fat should be fairly similar to plant-derived saturated fat?)

You could try skipping a day or more between dark chocolate days, which will effectively cut the intake by 50%+ over the average.

Or, you could use cacao powder where you get the polyphenols and nitric oxide boost without the SFA.

With ground or chocolate-covered nuts, you can get a pretty decent dark chocolatey treat going (although, it's not the same as buttery dark chocolate squares.) Theoretically, I think this could help to somewhat balance out the overall LDL raising effect. I've tried a few experiments in the kitchen to create a MUFA-rich dark chocolate bar. With large hazelnuts (which has a pretty awesome fatty acid profile, imo), you can really water down a chocolate bar, possibly end up with a great tasting treat, and cut out SFA. I've also experimented with adding fiber + protein, which was interesting / functional but not delicious.

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Re: give up my square of dark chocolate?

Postby adventure » Sat Apr 23, 2016 8:46 am

Thank you for the feedback and suggestions.

I have no idea about my LDL-P. I have never had an NMR done. My cardiologist was even reluctant to test my CRP and homocysteine. He was finally willing because it had been more than 10 years (he thinks it shouldn't be tested more frequently than that).

I see the doctor again in June and will ask for a NMR but I anticipate a "no". Everybody here seems to getting more testing and I can't figure out how people are doing it.

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Re: give up my square of dark chocolate?

Postby cdamaden » Sat Apr 23, 2016 9:01 am

Apod - nice write up!
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Stavia
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Re: give up my square of dark chocolate?

Postby Stavia » Sat Apr 23, 2016 12:08 pm

Adventure, some of us pay for the tests at Walk In Labs.

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Re: give up my square of dark chocolate?

Postby circular » Sat Apr 23, 2016 1:07 pm

apod I got curious about saturated fat in EVOO since I eat a lot of that, and this page suggests there's a wide variance, so if you eat a lot and use cronometer, perhaps cronometer goes with an average? http://www.oliveoilsource.com/page/chem ... tics#Fatty

I would think there's a variance with avocados too. Of course we assume cronometer isn't exact, it's just that when setting such tight limits on saturated fat, how do we really know how close they are to our goals if eating higher amounts of olive oil and avocado?

The same page also says:

It is generally accepted that cooler regions (e.g. Tuscany) will yield oil with higher oleic acid than warmer climates. That is, a cool region olive oil may be more monounsaturated in content than a warm region oil.
ApoE 3/4 > Thanks in advance for any responses made to my posts.

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Re: give up my square of dark chocolate?

Postby buck3Maureen » Sat Apr 23, 2016 1:21 pm

Hi Adventure,
Did your doctor say why you should not test more than 1x a yr? I think in the US you cannot just go to a lab and pay for a blood test. (I could be wrong) I think you have to have a doctor order it. What I do is find out what my dr. wants to test for and then I go to Life Extenstion web site and add on any tests that I want done. Since I pay for everything out of pocket it is cheaper and until June they have a sale on blood work. The reasone this gets around having a doctor order the tests is that the Life extenstion people put an MD's name on your order and they provide counseling services (included in the price of the blood test) for you when you get your results.

Maureen

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Re: give up my square of dark chocolate?

Postby apod » Sat Apr 23, 2016 1:49 pm

circular wrote:apod I got curious about saturated fat in EVOO since I eat a lot of that, and this page suggests there's a wide variance, so if you eat a lot and use cronometer, perhaps cronometer goes with an average? http://www.oliveoilsource.com/page/chem ... tics#Fatty

I would think there's a variance with avocados too. Of course we assume cronometer isn't exact, it's just that when setting such tight limits on saturated fat, how do we really know how close they are to our goals if eating higher amounts of olive oil and avocado?

The same page also says:

It is generally accepted that cooler regions (e.g. Tuscany) will yield oil with higher oleic acid than warmer climates. That is, a cool region olive oil may be more monounsaturated in content than a warm region oil.
I'm currently eating this stuff, with lab analysis testing at 78% oleic acid. I wonder if they would have the full fatty acid profile available upon request, to nerd-out on? :geek:

I like how Santiago lists their analysis (~14% SFA):
http://santiagopremium.com/bw/wp-conten ... ve-oil.pdf

It's interesting, on wikipedia I see the variance within the unsaturated fatty acid composition, while they have the SFA at a relatively fixed amount (~14.5% SFA): https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Olive_oil

In Cronometer, it looks like I'm defaulting to ~14% SFA in my EVOO math. With Cacao, I often add a 30-50% "discount" to it's SFA content with my rough math, as it's largely stearic acid (C18:0) which metabolizes to MUFA. In the end, I tend to feel pretty safe eating whole foods without too much regard to theoretical optimums (my chocolate lists 1 single ingredient -- 100% cacao beans with no added sugar and no added cocoa butter.)

With cacao being rich in fat, and pantethine being fat-soluble, perhaps a B5 supplement could be taken near the same time as a sort of balancing act. Interestingly, while statins decrease CoQ10 content while decreasing lipids, B5 (in the form of pantethine) increases CoQ10 content.

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Re: give up my square of dark chocolate?

Postby Stavia » Sat Apr 23, 2016 7:43 pm

Maureen you can order any test at Walkinlabs yourself withOUT a referring doctor. Many of us including myself have done this.

My second comment is that does the variance actually matter? Ranges are arbitrary already.


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