Something called c reactive protein is considered a measure of inflammation and correlated strongly with heart attacks. Triglycerides are another indicator - and correlated with excessive carbohydrate consumption.. Plenty of people now think chloresterol got a bum rap - and it matters alot what molecule its attached to. Its actually a precursor for testosterone - so its not a bad thing to have in your body. You just want to have alot of the good ones - and not that bad. Companies like Cheerios make alot of money pedalling outdated science IMHO. I hesitate to go into this because its not really necessary. With nutrition you can just test if yourself. Go Paleo - see if you lose weight. Get your blood work up at your next physical - and bam you will know how you are doing. You don't have to argue theory with people all day..