SUPPLEMENT PROTOCOL FOR HEART HEALTH

In discussing the use of supplements for Heart Health there are different supplements for Different types of Heart Problems. For example, Hawthorn Berry is famous for assisting those who have aged related or failing hearts. This Herb, in particular, is prescribed in Europe by Doctors for many conditions associated with the heart.  It contains weak cardiac glycosides and nutritive polyphenols that also assist in the nutrition of heart muscle.

No supplement program should really be undertaken unless one has had some professional assessment from a Health professional and diet and exercise programs are undertaken.  Without proper diet and exercise programs then a supplement program becomes blunted in its intended effects as the word supplement is just that – supplement,  or add to , not  in place of !  Exercise of course is good for circulation and moving nutrients in the blood to where they should go and diet is all about the acquisition of nutrients that the cells and tissues of the body require. These nutrients also help to maintain the integrity of the walls and blood vessels of the Cardiovascular System. This blog will mainly focus on supplements for the Cardiovascular system and the role of diet and exercise will be discussed in other articles.

The discussion of supplements needs to be looked at in context as the nation’s number one killer is- Heart disease which includes heart attacks and stroke.

The following supplements are recommended as a simple preventative protocol that should not tax the budget and are  designed to be taken every day for life for good health maintenance. They are listed in order of importance.

Activated B group vitamins – once a day preferably in the morning.

Grapeseed Extract – Small molecule extract is only taken 2-3 times per day.

Magnesium – powder if possible as is cheaper and easier to absorb taken as recommended on the bottle.

Rationale?

Activated B group vitamins are supplements generally contain a broad Spectrum of B group vitamins that have been formulated so they do not have to go through the liver to be absorbed by the body. B group are water-soluble and are  flushed out of the body daily so must be replenished daily.  Our foods contain very little of these vitamins due to storage and heat issues. B group are essential for the control of Methylation in the body. Methylation affects the body’s DNA and DNA affects the aging process of cells. If the body’s methylation process is not optimized then there can be disorders such as fatigue, inflammation, cancer growths, and elevated risk of cardiovascular disease.

Grapeseed Extract contains Phytochemicals such as Oligomeric  Proanthocyanidins (  OPc.s), Flavanoids and polyphenols which help to strengthen the integrity of blood vessel walls and make them more pliable and less damaged due to age or oxidation.  As we age our blood vessels tend to become less pliable and can be likened to a plastic hose that is constantly exposed to the sun -where cracks eventually occur as a result of oxidation. In the human body, oxidation takes place and eventually, the blood vessel walls thicken as a response to this stress and become more liable to damage. If the blood vessel wall is damaged this sets up a cascade of events with cholesterol trying to patch up the vessel walls as our outer casing of the cells are made from cholesterol.  Unfortunately, cholesterol and its constituents can become oxidized as well leading to formations of Plaque. It is this plaque that can block small arteries to the Heart leading eventually to a heart attack  If there is one product that promises to do so much for the human body it is Grapeseed Extract.as it has anti-cholesterol properties and is a great natural anti-oxidant. Grapeseed extract, unfortunately, is one of the most adulterated products on the planet and the small molecular weight extract is expensive. Small molecular weight extract has been researched and trialed as offering the benefit to treating a number of problems such as certain cancers, improving blood-sugar metabolism, preventing aging of blood vessels and improving microcirculation and preventing small blood vessel wall damage.  Most of the grapeseed on the Australian Market, however, is low grade, high molecular weight Tannins. These molecules have little or no effect on the cells of the body and are not absorbed.   The following brands are recommended –  Anthernogel brand and Terry Nutrition  OPC’s . I will put links here as these seem to be the only high potency grapeseed extracts available that are reliable –http://www.terrytalksnutrition.com and http://www.masqueliers.com 

Magnesium is a smooth muscle relaxer and is a mineral involved in the production of cellular energy. We generally do not get enough in our diet unless we are eating about 50 bananas a day!  Magnesium also is a smooth muscle relaxer and counteracts vascular calcification which is a big factor in the development of Heart disease. Magnesium supplementation is used in the treatment of Arrhythmias, Hypertension, Atherosclerosis and Endothelial Dysfunctions ( inner lining of the small arteries fails to function normally )

The above supplements taken in preventative doses are not known to interfere with any heart medications and i have purposely listed them for that reason. If in doubt, of course, consult your health care professional.

Now i have not mentioned Co Q10 or Fish oil or Hawthorn berry or Bergomet or Olive leaf extract or Aged Garlic Extract or Salvia Militorizhia which all have a place in Coronary health care. These can be added into a protocol for those who have issues but must be customized to what is being treated. For example, if one has an arrhythmia then Hawthorn berry and Curcumin can be added to the list as these preparations will help to address the more specific problem.

There is much talk about blood thinners and those who are prone to Cardiovascular disease or stroke are often prescribed powerful drugs which act as anti-coagulants. Anything that slows blood flow or trauma to a blood vessel or plaque can cause blood to coagulate and eventually cause a clot to form. Thankfully nature has provided an answer in providing many natural substances that make it harder for the blood to clot.

Specific Herbals that have demonstrated anti-clotting properties are –

Dan Shen ( Salvia Miltiorrhiza )

Garlic

Ginger

Turmeric / Curcumin

High dose fish oils

cayenne chili

Grapeseed extract

These cannot be used as a replacement for pharmaceuticals if one has been prescribed them but certainly taken in liberal doses collectively or synergistically will act as preventative medicine if one is in a higher risk bracket for Cardiovascular disease and not taking pharmaceuticals. . If you are on pharmaceutical blood thinners please do not take any supplement until you have professional advice.  My first pick would be Dan shen as it has proven anti-platelet effects .  Second, the pick would be  Grapeseed extract for all the reasons mentioned.  Another pick would be Curcumin – as it does a lot of other things besides act as Potent anti-inflammatory on blood vessel walls. Ginger can be taken as a ginger tea a few times a day and Garlic can be taken as an Aged Garlic capsules ( unless you want to take several cloves a day and reek of garlic ).vAlas, Fish oil which is good for health overall is not all that potent when it comes to “ thinning the blood “ but it could go into the daily mix if you wish.

So now comes the preverbial Question? How many do I take and i cannot afford to take them all?  My suggestion is if one does not have any heart health issues then Activated B plus Grapeseed extract and Curcumin offers the best bang for the buck so to speak. These agents act systemically on the body’s systems and do so much more as preventative therapeutic agents. If an antiplatelet or anticoagulant effect is required then Dan Shen ( Salvia Miltiorrhiza ) is the best pick. This Herb is best dispensed by practicing herbalists and of course, if purchasing a product make sure it has an Austel number (  i is approved by the TGA -Therapeutic Goods Administration )

A good source that i have found for scientific information on the above supplements are – Green Medicine  http://www.greenmedicineinfo.com for referenced research articles and Terry Talks nutrition  http://www.terrytalksnutrition.com    

Of course any further informatio please contact me at https://adelaidenaturopath.net.au