Ivor Cummins – Using Engineering Principles to determine “root cause” of metabolic syndrome

Posted on Posted in LCHF, Research

Ivor Cummins is a Chemical Engineer who has done a lot of research into health and nutrition after receiving blood tests that were less than ideal.

You can read more about him on his website here.

He has become one of my favourite speakers in the low carb community as he approached his health like an Engineer, which I can relate to, and was basically trawling through the studies, to find out the major root cause.  Hyperinsulinemia. And then addressed the root cause, and improved his biomarkers for health.

This is one of his earlier videos in 2014 after 12 months on a low carb diet, called “The Cholesterol Conundrum”.

Though titled about cholesterol, it does go through other risk factors and the effects of a low carb/ketogenic diet on biomarkers of disease.

It is estimated that there is 70% of the world with some kind of carbohydrate intolerance, which then leads to insulin resistance, and the metabolic syndrome which includes type 2 diabetes and obesity.  It is estimated that there is 30% of people who are highly tolerant to carbs and remain lean and fit.  Genetics. Those who go on a Low Carb/High fat then gives anyone the ability to improve all biomarkers of health, control/reduce their weight, and live a healthy life.

Talks about what Atherosclerosis and Cardio Vascular Disease is:

Shows the biomarker differences between a low carb vs low fat diet trial.  Showing that low carb does better than low fat, especially in the areas of HDL, Triglyceride and Small LDL levels which are all cholesterol related.


More comparison to other Low GI diets and a high cereal diet.

LDL/HDL ratio:

LDL particle size diameter increasing (good thing):

Improved Total/HDL ratio which is one you see on your Lipid results (Lower the better):

Triglyceride levels:

HbA1C levels, for relative risk factor increase for death as it increases:

What HDL does in the body:

HDL being low is a better predictor and more overriding factor of risk of Heart Disease than LDL being high:

How small dense LDLs are created through glycation and oxidation LDL:

Graph of higher Small Dense LDL cholesterol increasing as the percentage of carbs in the diets increases and decreases when it decreases.


What Lipoproteins are (Cargo vessels for cholesterol and triglycerides):


Picture of the 2 options when you eat fatty meat.  Eat it with carbs and you spike insulin and store the fat. Eat it with veggies with low carb, as insulin is kept low and the fat is uses as energy and burnt.


What the key indicators of Mortality are: Fasting Insulin value as heart disease predictive factor.  If insulin low (<12uU/ml) and trigs high(>150mg/dl), rate increases by 50% over a low insulin (<12uU/ml) and low trigs (<150mg/dl) control set.  If you have high insulin (12-15uU/ml), however, your risk of heart disease goes up by 360% (1 to 4.6) even if your trigs are low (150mg/dl), and worse if your trigs are high.  And even worse when your Insuin is even higher (>15uU/ml), with your trigs only increasing your risk from 430% more to 570% more.  Still very bad.  So get your insulin levels lower! 

Proportion of your LDL cholesterol (40%) being small dense LDL as a predictive factor.  Massive jump in risk when above 40% of your LDL being small and dense when compared to below 40%:

Shows how poorly the increase in total cholesterol as a predictive factor in all cause mortality.  Higher cholesterol the less chance of death??? Go figure…

Triglycerides as a predictive factor when using LDL/HDL ratio.  Minimum 4x increase to 6x increase.  Big difference if your trigs are high or low.

The reason why I like this video the most is because it shows numbers and risk ratios/factors on measurable blood markers which anyone can measure.  Also shows how a low carb/ketogenic diet can improve this risk factors for heart disease/all cause mortality.

Leave a Reply