Heart disease is the leading cause of death in Bermuda but the good news is that it is 95% preventable! Along with a good diet and exercise, keeping your heart healthy and strong is very achievable. Supplements aid in achieving this goal. Please consult your doctor or pharmacist before adding any supplement to your regimen especially if you are taking any other medications/supplements or if you have any health conditions.
1. Fish Oil
Fish provides both primary and secondary protection– that is, it can help prevent a first heart attack, or a second one. Fish oil provides omega-3 fatty acids which help reduce inflammation that can cause harmful clotting, reduce high triglycerides that can lead to fatty liver, reduce the risk of clogged arteries after angioplasty or bypass surgery, lower your risk for an irregular heartbeat, lower blood pressure and reduce your risk for stroke.
Recommended intake: 1,000-3,000mg per day.
Natures Bounty® Fish, Flax, Borage-Omega 3-6-9
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This natural, energy-boosting biochemical when added to other treatments for congestive heart failure can improve quality of life, such as breathlessness, swollen legs, enlarged liver and insomnia. Taking CoQ10 (CoenzymeQ10) along with blood-pressure lowering drugs improves their effectiveness and may allow you to reduce dosages. After experiencing a heart attack, CoQ10 significantly lowers your risk of another heart attack. It also helps to reduce muscle-related pain and weakness that are side effects of statin drugs.
Recommended intake: 100-300mg a day in divided doses.
Country Life® CoQ10
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3. Red Yeast Rice
Like statin drugs, red yeast rice reduces cholesterol levels. It contains HMG-CoA reductase inhibitors, the same active ingredient as statin drugs such as lovastatin. Red yeast also contains sterols, isoflavones and monounsaturated fatty acids, all ingredients that provide additional heart protection. It can take 8-12 weeks to see full results. Please take under physician supervision and check liver regularly. Since it acts like a statin, it depletes the CoQ10 levels in the body and, therefore, should be taken with at least 200mg of CoQ10 concurrently.
Recommended intake: 600mg twice a day or 1,200 mg once a day
Nature’s Plus® Herbal Actives Red Yeast Rice
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4. Phytosterols, Vitamin E, B-Vitamins
Phytosterols are plant compounds that help to reduce cholesterol by competing for absorption in the intestines. They can reduce total and LDL cholesterol by 10-15%. They can be used along with statins or a cholesterol-lowering diet, and are often added to vegetable oil spreads or other “functional” foods. Recommended intake: at least 300mg per day, divided and taken before meals.
Vitamin E (natural and full spectrum) helps prevent blood platelets from sticking together, a big factor in blood clotting. It also stops oxidation of LDL cholesterol which is a factor in hardening of the arteries. Vitamin E also lowers blood pressure by promoting production of blood vessel-relaxing nitric oxide and inhibits cholesterol production in the liver. Recommended intake: 400IU of alpha-tocopherol and mixed tocopherols along with 400mg of mixed tocotrienols. *If you take Coumadin/warfarin, please consult with your doctor for a safe way to incorporate Vitamin E into your regimen.
B-Vitamins, as a combination of folic acid, vitamin B6 and vitamin B12, reduces harmful homocysteine levels. A recent study conducted at the University of Southern California found that these three B vitamins reduced the progression of early subclinical atheroscelerosis, as measured by thickness of the carotid artery in the neck, even in people at low risk for cardiovascular disease. Niacin is also prescribed in large doses for treating high cholesterol but acts differently than statin drugs. Recommended intake: 500mcg-folic acid, 400mcg-B12, 50mg-B6, 50mg-Niacin.
Nature’s Plus® Ageloss® Heart Support
5. Resveratrol, Garlic, Flavonoids
Resveratrol is a member of a group of plant compounds called polyphenols. It affects age-related gene expression changes in heart tissue. Like calorie restriction, resveratrol switches the body’s biochemical pathways towards tissue maintenance which in turn protects cardiovascular health. Recommended intake: at least 400mg of standardized trans-resveratrol daily.
Garlic extract can preserve elasticity in blood vessels and slow the development of atherosclerosis. It can also modestly reduce blood pressure and high cholesterol. Recommended intake: 600-1200mg a day, in divided doses.
Flavonoids are found in a variety of foods like green tea and chocolate and have a wide range of heart health benefits. They reduce the inflammation associated with heart disease, improve the ability of blood vessels to relax, strengthen capillaries and act as powerful antioxidants.
Nature’s Plus® Hypertrol® Rx-Blood Pressure®