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Cardiovascular Disease

Disease affecting the heart or blood vessels. Cardiovascular diseases include arteriosclerosis, coronary artery disease, heart valve disease, arrhythmia, heart failure, hypertension, orthostatic hypotension, shock, endocarditis, diseases of the aorta and its branches, disorders of the peripheral vascular system, and congenital heart disease.

  • Make sure you are taking supplements for overall good health. If you are not taking these basic supplements, we recommend Enfuz from Vitabase. When you take a small packet of pills each day, you get all the basic nutrition you need. Each packet contains a multi-vitamin, CoQ10 (for heart health), Omega 3, Vitamin D-3, a probiotic, and a powerful set of antioxidants to help your body fight off disease.
  • Transmyocardial laser revascularization is a treatment for angina by which new channels are created in the heart muscle with a laser. This then increases the flow of blood to deprived areas of the heart.
  • Studies suggest that dehydroepiandrosterone (DHEA) does in fact have a beneficial effect on the vascular function of the heart and may aid in the prevention of cardiovascular disease. Reach is still being done on DHEA and heart disease, but a 48 percent decrease in death from this disease has been linked to this research population.
  • Isoflavones remain the subject of many scientific studies. Many of these studies show that soy isoflavones may inhibit the growth of cells that form artery clogging plaque. It is already known that clogged arteries can lead to heart disease. Soy isoflavones appear to improve the flow of blood through the arteries thus aiding in the prevention of clogged arteries.
  • It is well known that persons with diabetes are at a higher risk for developing heart disease. There is a binding protein (BP-1) test to check for insulin resistance that can be given to you by a physician.
  • Magnesium is one of the four most important diet supplements. Studies have reported that deficient magnesium intake is related to cardiovascular disease. It is believed that magnesium supplementation may improve heart rhythm and be beneficial in saving the lives of patients suffering from heart disease.
  • More information pertaining to cardiovascular disease can be obtained from the following: The American Heart Association or the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute.
  • potassium deficiencies should be addressed and corrected before coronary bypass surgery is performed, as this will lower the risk factors involved.
  • The Journal of the American Medical Association published information that implied patients given tetracycline or quinolones in the three years immediately before this study confirmed to be at a lower chance for heart attacks. Current studies being done have exposed a link between heart disease and infection with Chlamydia pneumoniae, Helicobacter pylori, herpes viruses and it is thought but not definite bacteria in dental plaque. The thought is that the inflammation response due to the body's defense having been triggered by the infection, could cause left ventricular dysfunction which can lead to sudden death. Due to the link between infection and heart disease, studies are being done on the use of antibiotics and prevention of heart disease.
  • A defibrillator is a portable device used to restore normal heart rhythm to patients in cardiac arrest. These portable devices are used mostly in police cars and aircraft for emergencies. The American Red Cross and The American Heart Association offer training classes on the proper use of these devices. If your physician feels that you need a portable defibrillator in your home he can prescribe one for you after you take classes on how to use it.
  • A number of environmental factors have been implicated in the development of hypertension (raised blood pressure), one of which is excessive noise exposure. It has been determined that listening to excessive noise for more than thirty minutes can be responsible for raising your blood pressure.
  • Are allergies linked to heart attacks? It is thought that a reaction in the walls of the arteries can trigger a spasm in the coronary artery. When a spasm occurs, the person can feel chest pain or discomfort called angina pectoris. If a spasm is severe, a heart attack is possible. In many cases a persons pulse rate will increase after eating certain foods or you come into contact with some allergens. It is highly recommended that you be tested for food allergies or other allergens.
  • Cardiokymography (CKG) along with electrocardiograms (ECGs) is a test that can disclose "silent" heart disease. It was discovered that electrocardiograms alone failed to detect 39 percent of heart disorders. This study showed that when the cardiokymography and the electrocardiogram were used in combination only 8 percent of heart cases went undetected.
  • Four homeopathic remedies that have been suggested for treatment of angina are arnica Montana, Arsenicum album, Magnesia phosphorica, and Spongia tosta. Consult a qualified homeopathic physician if interested in these remedies.
  • Hypothyroidism (under active thyroid) is a condition in which the body lacks sufficient thyroid hormone. Studies have discovered that women that have this problem also have a much greater risk of getting blockages in the aorta.
  • Erectile dysfunction is a frequent problem in men that have a problem with hypertension (high blood pressure). It has been discovered that many of the drugs used to treat hypertension can cause the problem. Sildenafil (Viagra) is used for the treatment of erectile dysfunction caused by a medical condition called pulmonary arterial hypertension. At one time the thought was that this sildenafil was a dangerous choice for these patients, but researchers now believe this to be a possible option for patients with high blood pressure. Consult with your physician as to medications you are taking for hypertension and to insure your blood pressure is not be lowered to much. Make sure your physician knows if you are taking nitrates, as this drug along with sildenafil can lower your blood pressure to a very dangerous level. Sometimes stress tests are required by a physician before they will prescribe sildenafil.
  • It has been known for many years now the importance of keeping a persons blood pressure under control. This is being done with drugs and in most cases lifestyle changes must be done also. Combination of these two treatments may help delay or even prevent complications of heart disease. Currently there has been studies that show a small amount of alcohol, such as wine and some liquors may be beneficial for the heart.
  • Nitroglycerin is used to dilate the coronary arteries and improve blood supply and oxygen to the heart. Nitroglycerin can be purchased in sublingual tablets, patch, and lingual spray form. At the first sign of chest pain the patient is to take this drug, and if the patients mouth is dry the spray form can be used. Unfortunately, there are side effects to watch for when taking this medication, some of these are, headache, weakness, and dizziness. With continued use these side effects should go away.
  • People with high blood pressure and that are at risk for heart disease are advised by most physicians to take one baby aspirin a day. It is believed that this thins the blood and may reduce your risk of a heart attack and/or stroke with virtually no side effects. It must be noted though, regular doses of aspirin can be the cause of internal bleeding and may even cause you to get stomach ulcers. The FDA also has recognized the use of a baby aspirin a day. There are other out there thought that do not believe this is a good idea and that it needs more research.
  • The following drugs are the most prescribed by physicians for patients that have high blood pressure: beta-blockers, calcium channel blockers, central-acting agents, and diuretics. Beta blockers slow the heart rate and lower blood pressure. They also reduce the heart's workload by decreasing the amount of oxygen needed by the heart. Side effects include, dizziness, decrease in sexual desire for women, and impotence in men. Another side effect is a decrease in ventricular function. Calcium channel blockers work by preventing the movement of calcium in the cells of the heart and blood vessels, thus relaxing the blood vessels and increasing the blood supply and oxygen to the heart. The most common side effects are fatigue and leg swelling, dryness of the mouth, muscle pain, and heart arrhythmia. Of course, side effects do vary depending on the specific medication taken.
  • Thrombolytic agents are drugs that break up or dissolve clots that can cause a stroke or heart attack. These include streptokinase (Streptase) and alteplase (Activase, also known as tissue plasminogen activator (TPAJ). These substances injected intravenously, flow through the arteries, finding and breaking up blood clots. It has been discovered through studies that when given thrombolytic therapy within the first six hours of the onset of a heart attack enhances the patients chances for survival. Unfortunately, this treatments may not work for patients that suffer from peptic ulcers, a history of strokes, very high blood pressure, and a recent head injury of abdominal surgery.
  • Trandolapril (Mavik) is an (ACE) inhibitor that belongs in a class of drugs called angiotensin converting enzyme, it works by relaxing blood vessels, causing them to widen. This action helps to lower blood pressure helping to prevent strokes and heart attacks. This medication is also used to improve survival after an acute heart attack. Enalapril (Vasotec) and ramipril (Altace) are also ACE inhibitors which are used for treating high blood pressure and heart failure. These ACE inhibitors lower blood pressure by reducing the production of angiotensin II, thereby relaxing the arterial muscles and enlarging the arteries. As with many medications there are side effects with taking these medications, some of these are, constipation, dry mouth, decreased sexual desire or even impotence, and some decrease in mental functions.
  • Warfarin (Coumadin) is a drug that prevents blood from clotting. It belongs to the family of drugs called anticoagulants (blood thinners). This drug is frequently prescribed for patients with certain types of irregular heartbeat, after a heart attack or heart valve replacement surgery. Another group of patients that this medication is prescribed for is cancer patients. This is because of the accumulation of blood clots containing cancer cells that can colonize other areas of the body. Researchers recommended the use of this type of drug be for at least 2 years on patients that have a history of recurring problems with blood clotting. Aspirin and vitamin E have also been used as blood thinners. it should be noted that these three drugs must not be taken at the same time because the patient would be in danger of excessive bleeding.
  • We are aware today that nitric oxide (NO) acts as a signal molecule in the nervous system, fights against infections, regulates blood pressure. Great amount of emphasis in the drug discovery industry is currently aimed at generating more powerful and selective cardiac drugs based on the knowledge gained of NO as a signal molecule. It is known that NO keeps the surface of blood vessels smooth thus not allowing platelets to bind together and form dangerous clots. Studies are currently being done on controlling NO levels as researchers already know too much NO is toxic to the body.
  • Women over fifty five or who have gone through menopause, and are having any chest pain or even just discomfort should think of the possibility of heart disease. This should be the case even if the pain is mild and not as bad as upper abdominal pain, shortness of breath, or nausea. It is known that women do not go to the hospital when heart disease is suspected as do men. Studies done between men and women patients have shown that women do not receive drugs they need to protect against heart disease as quickly as men do. Also women are less likely to have bypass surgery or angioplasty for cardiovascular disease. Therefore, women with cardiovascular disease die more often from heart disease than men do.

  • Always let someone know about your heart condition and what to do in case of an emergency. Have love ones train for CPR and cardiac massage.
  • Drink distilled water 8 ozs or more a day.
  • Essential to cut down the intake on Vitamin K if you are taking aspirin or any blood thinner. Vitamin enriched foods are egg yolks, spinach, liver, broccoli, cauliflower, and dark green vegetables. Ti help the blood thinner work increase your intake of Vitamin E such as sunflower seeds and soybeans.
  • Exercise regular and control your weight.
  • Garlic and onions have compounds to help lower cholesterol levels.
  • Go directly to the emergency room if you have symptoms of a heart attack.
  • Important to have in your diet essential fatty acids. Olive oil, tuna, trout, mackerel, Atlantic herring, pink salmon, and raw nuts except peanuts have plenty of essential fatty acids.
  • It is essential to have protein such as skinless chicken, turkey, and fish these are low in fat also. You must have raw foods.
  • Reduce Stress
  • Stay away from caffeine, alcohol, sugar, red meat soft drinks, fats, chocolate, butter, tobacco, processed foods, fried foods, spicy foods and white flour products.
  • Take sodium out of your diet.
  • Your body need at least 5 servings of fruits and vegetables.
  • Your diet needs to be balanced and has lot of fiber from vegetables, fruits and cereal.

Helpful nutrients for this condition.

Coenzyme Q10
Importance: Very High
Comments: Enhances flow of oxygen to the heart tissue. May prevent recurring heart attacks.

Importance: High
Comments: Promotes healthy cardiac muscle function. Chelate form is recommended.

Importance: High
Comments: Promotes healthy cardiac muscle function. Chelate form is recommended.

Importance: High
Comments: Reduces blood pressure. Promotes blood thinning.

Importance: High
Comments: Lowers levels of fats and triglycerides in the blood. Enhances absorption of oxygen. Helps the body tolerate stress.

Importance: High
Comments: Helps emulsify fat.

Importance: High
Comments: Helps emulsify fat.

Phosphatidyl choline or Lipotropic factors
Importance: High
Comments: Lowers levels of fats and triglycerides in the blood.

Importance: Moderate
Comments: Stops fatty acids from synthesizing in the liver. Protects the body from building up extra fat that could be dangerous.

Dimethylglycine (DMG)
Importance: Moderate
Comments: Makes oxygen easier for the body to use.

Essential fatty acids (black currant seed oil, flaxseed oil, MaxEPA, primrose oil, and salmon oil are recommended sources)
Importance: Moderate
Comments: Protects against hardening of the arteries. When using fish oil, also use a vitamin E product to keep it from becoming rancid.

Importance: Moderate
Comments: Balances electrolytes. Especially helpful for those taking cortisone or blood pressure medication.

Importance: Moderate
Comments: Makes up for deficiencies which could be a cause of heart disease.

Superoxide dismutase (SOD)
Importance: Moderate
Comments: Potent antioxidant.

Vitamin E
Importance: Moderate
Comments: Enhances immune system. Makes heart muscle stronger. Enhances circulation. Kills free radicals. Caution: Vitamin E should only be used under a physician's care.

Helpful herbs and supplements for this condition.

Type: Internal
Purposes: A Natural substance extracted from the rind of the fruit from this tree called hydroxycitric acid has been beneficial in lowering the production of cholesterol and fatty acids, and increases production of glycogen in the liver. Hydroxycitric acid has also been found to inhibit the actions of the enzyme ATP Cytrate Lyase in the liver, thereby stopping the buildup of dangerous fats in the body.

Type: Internal
Purposes: Cordyceps is a herb that has been used for centuries in China. Believed to promote the heart's strength, while slowing the heart rate. Also believed to raise HDL (good cholesterol) and lower LDL (bad cholesterol) levels. In this way it is thought to inhibit cholesterol plaques in the arteries, which promotes overall circulation and may reduce the risk of stroke or heart attacks. Also can lower blood pressure.

Ginkgo biloba
Type: Internal
Purposes: Ginkgo Biloba improves the blood flow, and may prevent blood clots from forming. At the same time the herb acts as an antioxidant and can neutralize free radicals so that they can't damage the body further.
Dosage: It is best to take the herbal extract standardized to 24 % Ginkgo flavone glycosides.

Grape seed
Type: Internal
Purposes: This extract is rich in flavonoids; phytochemicals that have antioxidant properties. It is thought that the antioxidants safeguard cells against the ravages of free radicals that prevent ailments commonly known as procyanidolic oligomers (PCOs. It is also believed that the PCOs improve blood circulation, strengthen blood vessels, and lower blood pressure.

Type: Internal
Purposes: Hawthorn increases blood flow to the heart muscle and is also used to lower blood pressure and reduce the effects of angina and atherosclerosis.

Suma Tea
Type: Internal
Purposes: It has been discovered that Low blood levels of vitamin E are a pretty good prediction of the presence of heart disease. It is believed that drinking suma tea and taking ginkgo biloba extract can help supply vitamin E needed by the body for cardiovascular disease.
Dosage: Drink 3 cups of suma tea daily. Follow direction on label for taking ginkgo biloba extract.

Barberry, Black Cohosh, Butchers Broom, Cayenne (capsicum), Dandelion, Ginseng, Valerian root
Type: Internal
Purposes: Valerian Root is used to regulate the nervous system and relieve tension, stress and anxiety.
Cautions: It is suggested that Barberry and black cohosh not be used during pregnancy. Ginseng should not be used if you have high blood pressure.

Ephedra (ma huang) and Licorice
Type: Internal
Cautions: Do not take these herbs if you have cardiovascular disease.