Dr. Juan Pablo Gonzalez-Rivas, senior researcher of the Kardiovize 2030 project team of the International Clinical Research Center of St. Anne’s University Hospital Brno (FNUSA-ICRC) is a member of the international network of scientists NCD-RisC dealing with the risk of noncommunicable diseases. The last article of this group also got into the prestigious magazine Nature.
Dr. Gonzalez-Rivas is a co-author of an article entitled “Repositioning of the global epicenter of non-optimal cholesterol” which points to an interesting fact. High level of non-HDL cholesterol (one of the indicators of cardiovascular risk contained in all types of lipoproteins except HDL) was a main risk factor responsible for 3.9 million deaths in 2017. The international network of researchers NCD-RisC, presenting data from more than 200 countries with more than 129 million participants and regularly informs about trends in cardiovascular health, has come up with surprising information. “Since 1980, we have been monitoring the shift of this risk factor from developed countries in Western Europe, especially from the Scandinavian countries and from Central and Eastern Europe to Asia,” said Juan Pablo Gonzalez-Rivas. “High levels of non-HDL cholesterol, also called bad cholesterol, have been one of the determinants of risk in the so called western way of life, and the epicenter is now moving to East and Southeast Asia and the Pacific.”
This transition is caused by two main factors. “The first, and more importantly, is a change in eating habits in the highly developed countries of Europe. We are seeing a shift in consumption from unhealthy fats (saturated and hydrogenated fats found mainly in confectionery, pastries, pizza, etc.) to healthier, unsaturated ones, which contains olive oil, nuts, avocados and vegetable oils in general. This improvement was also supported in the countries of the European Union by legislation, specifically by reducing the amount of industrially produced hydrogenated fats, so-called trans fats, in food. As of April 24, 2019, it can only be two grams per 100 grams of fat in food, “said Dr. Gonzalez-Rivas. The second factor is the widespread use of statins, a group of drugs that help with high cholesterol. The authors of the article state that similar measures would now be needed in the most affected countries in East and Southeast Asia.
An article can be found here: https://www.nature.com/articles/s41586-020-2338-1