Heart Healthy Lifestyle
Every year over 1 million Americans suffer from a heart attack. People are becoming more aware of the serious nature of heart disease and the need to prevent it. There is a correlation between heart disease and education with those of a higher education level having a lower incidence of heart disease. Is awareness of diet and supplementation the reason behind lower heart disease rates in the better educated?
A natural healthy approach to reducing risk of heart disease should have three important components.
Three Pronged Approach to a Healthy Heart
- Cut cholesterol
- Support Your Heart Muscle
Obesity is a killer when it comes to heart disease. We suggest that everyone have a BIA analysis to determine their body fat percentage. If you are over 25% body fat you need to start to worry and make sure you take off the extra pounds. If you are over 30% your risk of heart disease is greatly increased. Even the skinny person should be careful as we’ve seen people suffering from sarcopenia. The person even though they have a skinny body they also have a high percentage of body fat. Skinny couch potatoes and desk jockeys have to worry the most about sarcopenia.
The diet we believe is the most successful in preventing heart disease is the Mediterranean diet. The people from the Mediterranean area have a much lower incidence of heart disease. The Lyon Diet Heart Study looked at people who had already survived one heart attack. The diet reduced mortality by 70% and was stopped early to publish the results for the general public due to its success.
Switching to a Mediterranean diet is a big step in having a healthy heart.
There are a variety of supplements that can be helpful in cutting cholesterol. Below is a list.
- Red Yeast Rice – We know of a few doctors’ offices prescribing this to their patients. We would caution you to use CoQ10 with the Red Yeast Rice as it isn’t uncommon to get muscle pains if you don’t combine it with the Red Yeast Rice. Not good for use in people with normal cholesterol levels.
- Aged Garlic – This has been successful in helping to lower cholesterol and also being very heart friendly. There are many articles discussing the benefits of aged garlic in helping heart disease. Certainly worth taking even if you don’t have high cholesterol.
- Fish Oil, Krill Oil – Everyone is well aware of the benefits of these healthy oils. Fish oil consumption helps to lower mortality rates. This should be a part of every healthy heart program. It should be a part of everyone’s daily supplement regiment.
- Fiber – Oat, flax, and soluble fibers are all helpful in controlling cholesterol.
- Artichoke Extract – Artichoke extract helps inhibit oxidation of LDL cholesterol and also helps to increase healthy HDL cholesterol.
- Niacin – Is often prescribed to help lower cholesterol. It often causes itching and isn’t for everyone.
Support Your Heart Muscle
- Exercise – Aerobic exercise is important in building up endurance of the heart muscle. However we also suggest interval training. Interval training is more anaerobic and is an intense training. Interval training helps to increase stroke volume or the amount of blood your heart can pump. This can be very important in protecting you from a heart attack and if you do have one it can help you to survive. Before starting any exercise program please check with your doctor.
- CoQ10 – CoQ10 is one of the more important nutrients in maintaining a healthy heart. CoQ10 helps not only to build strength of the muscles by improving energy production in the cells. As we age our CoQ10 levels decrease and a supplementation program helps to enhance our lower levels. CoQ10 also has shown results in lowering cholesterol and should be taken by everyone taking statins or red yeast rice.