Cholesterol as cost of progress from primitive hunter to industrial seed-eater
Lipids vary greatly in their proneness to oxidation, polyunsaturated oils oxidising fastest and saturated fats slowest. This affects human health because it is the accumulation of oxidised lipids that causes a wide range of illnesses. The dietary ratio between polyunsaturated oils and saturated fats would have been small before the advent of industrial agriculture because the small, oily seeds of dicotyledonous herbaceous plants could not have been harvested competitively with seed-eating birds and rodents, whereas primitive humans have always been competitive with Carnivora in hunting large, fatty animals. The boosting of this ratio as a result of the use of fossil fuels has therefore detracted from what has otherwise been a powerful development in human ecology.
Robin and the Honey Badger, 8 January 2017