SUPPLEMENT PROTOCOL FOR HEART HEALTH
In supporting heart health, there are different supplements for Different types of Heart Problems. For example, Hawthorn Berry is famous for assisting age-related or failing hearts and Arrhythmias. This Herb, in particular, is prescribed in Europe by Doctors for many conditions associated with the heart. It contains weak cardiac glycosides and healthy polyphenols that also assist in the nutrition of heart muscle.
Before undertaking a healthy heart supplement program, if you have an existing heart problem, please consult your doctor or health professional for advice to avoid any interaction with any medication taken. The following supplements have been chosen as they have an excellent record of not conflicting with any pharmaceuticals or chemical medicine.
A proper diet and exercise program should be implemented as a matter of course. A supplement program becomes blunted in its intended effects as the word supplement is just that – supplement, or add to, not in place of good nutrition! Exercise is suitable for circulation and moving nutrients in the blood to where they should go, and diet is all about acquiring 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 on www.adelaidenaturopath.net.au.
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.
Besides diet and exercise, following supplements are helpful 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. Anyone can take these. 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- capsules or powder of Magnesium glycinate or chelate or orotate for better absorption
Activated B group vitamins are supplements that contain a broad Spectrum of B group vitamins that have been formulated, so they do not have to be processed via the liver to be absorbed by the body. B groups are water-soluble and flushed out of the body daily, so they must be replenished daily. Our foods contain very little of these vitamins due to how they are stored and exposed to heat. 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 optimised, there can be disorders such as fatigue, inflammation, cancer growths, and an 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 flexible and can be likened to a plastic hose constantly exposed to the sun -where cracks eventually occur due to oxidation. In the human body, oxidation occurs, and finally, 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 oxidised 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 one product promises to do so much for the human body, it is Grapeseed Extract. It has anti-cholesterol properties and is an excellent natural anti-oxidant. Grapeseed extract, unfortunately, is one of the most contaminated products on the planet and the small molecular weight extract is expensive. Small molecular weight extract has been researched and trialled as offering the benefit to treating several problems such as certain cancers, improving blood-sugar metabolism, preventing aging of blood vessels and improving microcirculation and preventing minor blood vessel wall damage. However, most of the grapeseed on the Australian Market 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 significant 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. 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 have a place in Coronary health care. These can be added into a protocol for those who have issues but must be customised to what is being treated. For example, if one has arrhythmia, then Hawthorn berry and Magnesium can be added to the list as these preparations will help address the more specific problem.
If Cholesterol is an issue, then adding Kyolic aged garlic with Bergomet to your protocol would be very beneficial. Both products have evidence-based medicine for their use and have reduced cardiovascular plaque in many cases.
There is much talk about blood thinners, and those prone to Cardiovascular disease or stroke are often prescribed powerful drugs that act as anticoagulants. Anything that slows blood flow or trauma to a blood vessel or plaque can cause blood to thicken 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 )
Turmeric / Curcumin
High dose fish oils
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 a Potent anti-inflammatory on blood vessel walls. Ginger can be taken as a ginger tea a few times a day. Garlic can be taken as an Aged Garlic capsule ( 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 proverbial Questions?
How many do I take? Can I not 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. 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, Dan Shen ( Salvia Miltiorrhiza ) is the best pick( but not if you are on heart medicines). This Herb is best dispensed by practising herbalists, and of course, if purchasing a product, make sure it has an Austel number (the TGA -Therapeutic Goods Administration approval),
Green Medicine is a good source for scientific information on the above supplements: http://www.greenmedicineinfo.com for referenced research articles and Terry Talks nutrition http://www.terrytalksnutrition.com.
Another great resource on anything to do with heart issues is Dr Walker, integrated cardiology at www.drrosswalker.com.
Of course, for your free heart health pulse diagnosis and any further information, don’t hesitate to get in touch with me at https://adelaidenaturopath.net.au.