Background: Elevated LDL cholesterol and impaired fasting glucose are significant risk factors for cardiovascular disease; the most prevalent cause of mortality in the USA.
Many dietary approaches have been examined to help combat these medical problems.
Each type of diet typically places a particular emphasis on the relative proportions of the three macronutrients; fat, carbohydrate and protein.
Methods: We report on a case series of 41 patients who were placed on an 1100 calorie diet reduced in starch and emphasizing lean proteins, mono and polyunsaturated fats and fiber with a unique composition of macronutrients for four months in an effort to improve cholesterol and fasting glucose indices.
Results: 28 of the 41 (68%) patients complied with the protocol over a four-month period.
In the compliant group, statistically significant reduction (p < 0.05) in the following mean variables were seen; Weight (2.3kg), Total Cholesterol 22% (53 mg/dL), LDL 23% (43mg/dL), HDL (4 mg/dL) ,TAG (21mg/dL) and fasting serum glucose (12mg/dL), after 4 months on the dietary regimen.
In the non-compliant/comparison group, statistically significant increase (p < 0.05) in the following variables were seen; Total Cholesterol (24 mg/dL), LDL (14 mg/dL) and TAG (29 mg/dl), at the end of 6 months.
Conclusions: This magnitude of reduction in Total and LDL Cholesterol is significantly greater than that seen in the recent large dietary intervention trials and is comparable to that seen in ‘eco-Atkins’ trial, which was far more restrictive in nature and shorter in duration.
We hypothesize that given the significant reduction in fasting serum glucose and the pre-clinical data showing insulin increasing activity of the HMG CoA reductase enzyme, the underlying mechanism of action for the significant drop in Total and LDL cholesterol may be a reduced serum insulin levels and HMG-CoA reductase activity.