T Nation

Cholesterol in Supplements


Two questions that I'm hoping someone can answer:
1. Why does every protein supplement I have found have high levels of cholesterol? Is there not a way to make a protein supplement without high levels of it?

  1. On a 4,500 calorie diet is it okay to consume more than the recommended daily value for a 2,000 calorie diet of Cholesterol? Or is that a daily value for EVERYONE, regardless of caloric intake?

Thanks Ladies and Gentlemen....



actually dietary cholesterol is not needed. Your body can synthesize cholesterol from EFA's.

With that said. I wouldn't worry about getting too little cholesterol from dietary intake.

but yes. If you require more bile acids, or hormones, then extra cholesterol will help. RDA's are based upon what is adaquete for 95% of the population, not entirely related to the 2,000 calorie diet quote.

I wouldn't worry too much, unless your cholesterol is through the roof. There are many here who eat multiples of the daily upperlimit of cholesterol.


I've read many times that our dietary intake of cholesterol is really not related to our cholesterol levels. In actuality, it is believed that cholesterol levels in the body relate to genetics, and thus that you have a natural cholesterol "set point." Realtive to the amount of cholesterol in food, this level is very high, and dietary cholesterol--even a lot of it--would only make up a small portion of this. The balance of your cholesterol level is supplied by the body itself, which synthesizes its own.

To illustrate, I will use very hypothetical numbers. Suppose your "set point" is 100,000 units of cholesterol. Even if you took in tons of cholesterol, you might get 10,000 units from your food, to give you an idea of the relative proportions. The balance--90,000--would be supplied by your own body. If true, people who strive to eat a low-cholesterol diet are wasting their time and actually hurting their health. My opinion is that the cholestrol scare of today is the same as the anti-fat craze of the 1980-1990s. People are afriad of cholesterol so they avoid whole eggs and gobble down Corn Flakes instead. It makes no sense.

You know, cholesterol seems to be in high amounts in natural foods: whole eggs, whole milk, animal meat, etc. Those are the foods that mother nature wants us to eat. I'd much rather eat a diet of all natural foods (which includes the above mentioned cholesterol-filled foods as well as vegitables, fruits, nuts, etc.) than a bowl of ultra-refined Honey Nut Cheerios.

It seems to me that dietary cholesterol should not be a concern. However, things like trans fats and poor carbohydrates should be a concern. Avoid hydrogenated oils, skip refined grains, avoid sugar, eat fruits and vegetables, etc.



A serving of Biotest's Low-Carb Metabolic Drive has 5 mg. of cholesterol. I guess you didn't look too hard!


Apparantly this guy shops somewhere else...


Good post.

the human body has an internal mechanism to achieve homeostasis of cholesterol levels, regardless of dietary intake. problems occur when the body does not achieve homeostasis, and the reasons behing this are still not clearly understood.


Cholesterol is synthesized in the liver with fatty acids, but not EFA's.

But to the original poster, what protein powders have too much cholesterol? I've never seen a protein drink (with the exception of muscle milk) that has a lot of cholesterol. Cholesterol levels have more to do with the type of fats you eat and your genetics. Eating a lot of fried foods, trans fats and saturated fats may raise your blood cholesterol levels. Most people (85%+) do not raise blood levels of cholesterol by eating cholesterol. Your body needs well over 2000mg of cholesterol. Most of the cholesterol we need is synthesized by the body. If we eat more, we'll usually produce less. There are exceptions and people with family history of high cholesterol may have to watch how much cholesterol they take in.


why are you americans so obsessed with cholesterol.


It is the mentality of the entire nation...find something to demonize so you can blame it for every other problem.

If your kids are fat as hell, let's blame it on "strict parenting". It sure couldn't be because the fat bastards won't quit shoving Twinkies down their throats as they play 4 hours of X-Box a night.

Your bad ass kids snuck out of the house and smoked a joint? Let's spend 100 BILLION dollars on a drug war that won't actually stop people from using drugs but will damn sure fill up the prison system and ensure that more cops get paid to fight it. I mean, it was "weed's" fault your kids have no self control, it definitely isn't the fault of the parent.

You weigh 500lbs and the last time you saw your dick was when Reagan got shot? Let's blame KFC for making such damn good fried chicken that you couldn't keep your rotundous ass away from the front counter.


Whole egg protein powder has a large amount of cholesterol, but as everyone mentions, cholesterol is nothing to worry about.

If anyone wants detailed info I recommend "The Great Cholesterol Con" by Anthony Colpo or "The Cholesterol Myths".




yes you are correct, my mistake. Cholesterol precursors come from 2-carbon AcetylCoA units. The mechanism is beautiful actually.