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        FITNESS TIP FOR 8/28/2002   

Protein Power

I'm writing in this newsletter to promote the health benefits of 
protein. I will include stories, thoughts and opinions about meat 
eating, fad diets and diet falsehoods. I'll include recipes and advice 
on preparing meat. 
-Vicki Palmer

Cholesterol: The Secret to Good Sex?
by Vicki Palmer

Why do some people seem to have the sexual endurance of ten men, 
while others rarely get excited? What role does diet play in 
enhancing a healthy sex life? 

Cholesterol is a white, waxy, substance created by all animals and 
found in their fats, blood, nerve tissue and bile. We consume 
cholesterol in the animal foods we eat. It is entirely absent in foods 
from the vegetable kingdom. 

Cholesterol has never been proven to cause any disease. Studies 
can only show "links" to heart disease or any other condition. 
(1) Actually, cholesterol is vital to human health. Products of 
cholesterol turn into Vitamin D in our skin when touched by 
sunlight. Cholesterol is found in high concentrations in the brain 
and nerve tissue, playing a role we haven't begun to understand.
But most important, cholesterol is the substance the body uses to 
make its own anabolic steroids, including the various sex 
hormones in both men and women. 

Did you know that the famous aphrodisiac, the oyster, is a very 
concentrated source of cholesterol. Four ounces of steamed 
oysters contain 124 mg of cholesterol, while a 4 oz T-bone steak 
has only 94 mg. (2)

So, why the bum rap? How is it that cholesterol has been fingered 
in virtually every disease of modern man? The average person 
had never heard of cholesterol until the mid-1980's when the 
government officially adopted a stance against cholesterol 
consumption. The new dietary "villain" had been lurking in our 
eggs and pot roast for centuries and we never knew it. 

Of course, we were never told that the mere 800 mg of cholesterol 
consumed in a high animal-protein diet is nothing compared to the 
3000 mg of cholesterol produced daily in the human body by a 
healthy liver. (3) But is it merely co-incidence that the need for 
Viagra and other stimulating substances is on the rise in an age
where men are advised to restrict their cholesterol levels?

The sad truth is that our nation's sexual prowess has been 
sacrificed to the god of marketing. We've had the wool pulled over 
our eyes so that we would be fooled into buying that cheap, inferior 
food product broadly known as vegetable oil. I'm talking primarily 
about cottonseed oil, corn oil, soybean oil and especially the 
partially hydrogenated versions of these.

Civilizations the world over have traditionally eaten and cooked 
with animal products. Lard was formerly revered as the secret to a 
good pie crust and a must-have for deep-frying. Today lard is 
regarded as public enemy number one. Cultures have enjoyed real 
butter and dairy products for centuries. Even the first margarine 
was an animal product, made with suet (beef fat). It was an
inexpensive butter substitute for lower classes. The fact is, people 
were happy using animal products and these foods tasted good. 
When the farm production of vegetable oils grew abundant in the 
19th century, these commodity peddlers had to find a market to 
off-load the surplus. Before labeling laws, cheap cottonseed oil was 
often cut into olive oil and sold as 100% olive oil to unsuspecting 
consumers. But what these peddlers needed was a gimmick to 
create demand for their products and drive in the consumer. They
needed something to give them a competitive edge in the 
marketplace (because they certainly couldn't win with taste.)

Cholesterol was the perfect tool in their marketing campaign. It was 
one thing that occurred strictly in the animal products and never in 
the vegetable products. Today, items from bread to cookies or even 
fruit juices claim to be "healthy" because they have "no 
cholesterol". Food products can earn the right to use this label and 
save money at the same time by substituting animal fats with 
cheap, manufactured vegetable oils.

Lard and other solid animal fats have special properties that make 
them particularly suitable for cooking. These fats are more stable. 
They are mostly solid at room temperature which means they are 
able to remain stable at much higher temperatures than oils. If you 
heat a liquid vegetable oil to a cooking temperature and in another 
pan heat lard to the same temperature, you will notice the oil giving 
off much more smoke and odor. These are the breakdown products 
of the overheated oil, and they are detrimental to human health. After 
cooking, the heated oil absorbed by the food turns rancid much
faster than the heated lard. 

Oil peddlers overcame this problem by inventing the process of 
hydrogenation. By adding a hydrogen atom to normal vegetable oil, 
it turns into a solid fat resembling lard. This imitation fat has
 properties at high heat similar to lard and a shelf life long enough 
to make it useful in commercial products.

Actually, hydrogenated vegetable oils were originally developed by 
Proctor & Gamble in the 1890's for use in candles and soap, but with 
the advent of the electric light bulb, the candle market dwindled. Since 
this fat resembled lard, its makers decided to market it to the public 
as a lard substitute. They called their product Crisco (short for 
CRYStallized Cottonseed Oil) and without any testing of its 
consequences on human health, they launched their marketing 
program. From the beginning they promoted Crisco as healthier,
cleaner and easier to digest than lard.  

What started out as a marketing campaign turned sinister. When 
reports of problems caused by foods containing Crisco began to 
appear-problems like increased heart disease, increased cancer, 
growth problems, learning disorders and infertility-Proctor & Gamble
worked behind the scenes to cover them up. One scientist who 
worked for Proctor & Gamble, Dr. Fred Mattson, can be credited with 
presenting the US government's inconclusive Lipid Research 
Clinics Trials to the public as proof that animal fats caused heart 
disease. He was also one of the influences that persuaded the 
American Heart Association to preach the phony gospel of the Lipid 
Hypothesis (the idea that cholesterol and saturated fats cause 
heart disease and other disorders so everyone should adopt a 
low-fat diet.) (4)

In a century which has seen rates of grain, vegetable oil and sugar
consumption skyrocket, while meat consumption has remained 
level, it seems ludicrous to blame the rise of disease on animal 
products, regardless of how much cholesterol they contain. In fact, 
the rise in impotence and infertility in our country should be 
blamed on the lack of cholesterol in our modern diet. 

(1) An excellent book to read for more information on the "health 
risks" of cholesterol is Protein Power Lifeplan by Drs. Michael and 
Mary Dan Eades.

(2) Source: The Corinne T. Netzer Encyclopedia of Food Values

(3) Source: Let's Eat Right to Keep Fit, by Adele Davis

(4) Data about Crisco, Proctor & Gamble from article by Linda 
Forrestal which can be found at www.westonaprice.org.

Protein Power Recipe

You've never had good roast beef until you've tried this recipe, 
adapted from The Complete Meat Cookbook (Aidells & Kelly). This 
is good enough for company, easy enough to make any night. 

Rib Roast

4-5 lb rib roast, bone-in
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 T kosher salt
2 tsp coarsely ground black pepper
2 tsp chopped fresh rosemary or 1 tsp dried

Crush the garlic and salt together with a fork in a small, shallow 
bowl. Mix in the pepper and rosemary. Rub all over the roast, 
especially in any spaces between the meat and bones. Let the 
roast sit at room temperature for up to 2 hours, loosely covered, 
before cooking. 

Preheat the oven to 450F. Lay the roast, bone side down, in a 
large, shallow roasting pan and roast for 15 minutes. Turn the 
oven down to 350F without opening the door. Cook for 1 more 
hour. It's a good idea to check with a meat thermometer: At this
point it should be 115F for rare and 125F for medium-rare. Remove 
from oven and cover loosely with foil. Allow to rest for 15-20 
minutes before carving. 

Re-heat sliced leftovers in a hot frying pan for great steak and 
eggs the next morning.

And don't forget that a generous portion comes with a nutritious 
237 mg of cholesterol (1lb bone-in, pre-cooked weight).

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