Coronary ereart disease (CHD) is a disease that should not be taken lightly as it is the leading cause of death for adult men and woman in the United States. As a whole, cardiovascular related diseases cost an estimated 316 billion dollars and unfortunately the rate of disease is only going up. This may be a surprise to you considering the 4 billion dollars spent by the American Heart Association on research, along with modern medicinal technology. Let’s uncover myths, reveal methods of prevention, and outline a way to combat coronary heart disease to unleash a compelling future for your heart.
Your heart is a giant pump that circulates life throughout your body. Your heart is about the size of your two hands clasped together and beats 100,000 times per day. Every minute, your heart pumps about five quarts of blood through your blood vessels that span nearly 60,000 miles in length. This translates to your heart pumping 2,000 gallons of blood every day. Like the engine of your car, it is crucial to keep your heart fine tuned and performing at an elite level; your life depends on it.
What is Coronary Heart Disease?
Coronary heart disease is also known as coronary artery disease, heart disease and arteriosclerotic heart disease. Coronary heart disease occurs when the small vessels that supple your heart with blood and oxygen become narrow and begin to harden. Over of time, this causes ruptures of the vessels, heart attacks and more conditions that are often fatal.
The common treatment for this condition is surgery and clot breaking pharmaceutical drugs. Though this can extend one’s lifespan and turn a fatal disease into a chronic condition, it misses the mark. With the 4 billion spent is research by the AHA, there still are no great strides to reversal and prevention of coronary heart disease. The reason heart disease rates are on the rise is because the focus is on finding better surgeries and prescription drugs and not how to we reverse and combat coronary heart disease through better lifestyle practices. The root cause of any disease is inflammation levels that are out of control due to chronic stress, toxicity, deficiencies, and other destructive issues. Focusing on lowering inflammation levels in the body is a good strategy for long-term solution in the prevention and reversal of CHD.
Symptoms of Coronary Heart Disease
According to the Mayo Clinic, CHD can range from having no symptoms at all to many noticeable symptoms. Therefore there are no textbook symptoms that everyone experiences as it varies from one individual to the next. The symptoms include but may not be limited to:
- Pain in the chest
- Indigestion or nausea
- Lightheadedness or sweating
- Fast heart rate
- Shortness of breath
- Heaviness or squeezing of the heart
- General weakness with activity
Underlying Cause of Coronary Heart Disease
Understanding the root cause of a disease will certainly set you up for success when it comes to truly healing and avoiding a disease. CHD is the result of chronic inflammation. As the vessel walls break down, a buildup of plaque begins to accumulate in the walls of the arteries. These arteries have a crucial role in the supply of oxygen and blood to the heart. So as constriction or blockage of flow through these arteries occurs, the blood flow to the heart is cut off resulting in cardiac arrest. The American Heart Association narrows CHD down to 7 factors:
- Lack of physical activity
- Poor nutrition
- Obesity or overweight
- High blood pressure
- Diabetes Millitus
With these guidelines one may think that the AHA has figured it out, but the truth is that this list has many down falls. For instance, the AHA has nutrition guidelines that are driven by big business and special interest groups. Their idea of nutrition is abysmal. If you dive into the topic of cholesterol, studies have demonstrated that cholesterol is a symptom rather than a cause of heart disease. Check out a recent article I wrote on the cholesterol myth.
It is important to understand that heart disease was rare prior to 1900, and still remains uncommon in un-industrialized nations. Small tribes around the world that have no medical research means whatsoever have incredibly lower CHD rates than we do in America. It wasn’t until mid 1900s that heart disease rates skyrocketed and became the nation’s largest killer. Major contributors to systemic inflammation (the true cause of heart disease) are:
- Trans fats (think of any restaurant’s fried foods)
- Refined Carbohydrates
- Processed foods
- Corn, soybean, and vegetable oils
- Poor quality animal products
- Toxic exposures
- Poor Lifestyle habits
Though poor lifestyle habits falls into a broad category, what is encompassed in poor lifestyle habits is anything that does not serve our genetic intelligence. As humans we are created to genetically require daily exercise, quality relationships, and stress free, toxin free environments. Many people today are sitting for 8-10 hours per day, eating whatever they can grab quickly with no concern for it’s ingredient makeup, stressed to the max trying to meet societal expectations, ultimately driving their health towards disease very day. Our ancestors lived in small tribes that cultivated great relationships, ate off the land, and moving all day long. Today most are living a lifestyle that is not congruent with the needs of the human body.
How to Combat Coronary Heart Disease: A Strategy for Healing and Prevention
There are so many research proven strategies you can do daily to increase your heart health. History shows that CHD is not an uncontrollable plague to humans, but rather a disease brought on by poor choices. Again – coronary heart disease is NOT hereditary. What is hereditary are poor lifestyle choices that you learned from your parents. Let’s uncover a strategy to boost heart health and diminish inflammation.
High Quality Nutrition: The most powerful tool you have in you toolbox when it comes to your overall health is a really high quality, non-inflammatory diet. A non-inflammatory diet is outlined in the Heal Yourself Cookbook where you cut out processed food and sugars, and eat a whole food diet of high fat (good fat of course), moderate protein and minimal carbohydrates. Unlike the Standard American Diet, this diet promotes healing and repairs the body.
Eating nutrient dense super foods is crucial to replenishing nutrient stores. If we are only eating empty calories and foods that offer a low nutrient makeup, then our bodies will be starving for the vitamins and minerals required for daily life.
Physical exercise: The AHA tells us that simply walking for 30 minutes every day we could reduce heart disease by 90%. This is huge yet alarming to think so few people walk less than 30 minutes per day.
Beyond walking and running, weight lifting has shown to improve cardiovascular health as well. Dr. Scott Collier found in his research that “resistance training is more beneficial than many people believe” as it offers a different pattern of blood vessel response. According to Dr. Timothy Miller at Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center, strength training is good if not better than cardio. Due to its profound benefits on heart health, both men AND woman should weight lift. A mixture of both cardio and weight lifting is key. Other great forms of exercise include High Intensity Interval Training, Tai Chai and Yoga.
De-stress: Studies have shown that psychosocial stress and depression elevate C-reactive prtein and IL-6 levels, which are both inflammation markers. Common ways to reduce stress are:
- Mindful Meditation
- Good relationships
- Proper sleep
- Caffeine Reduction
Stress comes from so many different areas in daily life. The important thing is that we identify and mitigate any if not all stressors by asking better questions and getting a new perspective on events that occur in our lives.
Supplementation: Though eating a high quality diet will increase our body’s nutrient levels, you can speed up healing through concentrated supplements targeted at supporting heart health. The basic necessities of supplementation for a healthy body are taking a high quality multivitamin, probiotic and omega 3 fish oil like those found in our online store. When it comes to heart health, we can make a few more recommendations that will yield great benefits. These supplements include:
- CoEnzyme Q10 Ubiquinol (active form)
- Vitamins C, D, and E
For more vitamins and herbs that benefit heart health, go to the NuVision Health Center Store and find all the supplements I have put under the Heart Health category.
Detoxification: It is no secret that the onslaught of toxins we encounter in modern society is troubling for our bodies, to say the least. Though our bodies are designed to naturally detoxify, they are not designed to remove chemicals, biotoxins, and heavy metals at the massive rate in which we are exposed. Our bodies become toxic cesspools at a cellular level, which leads to inflammation and disease. In order to remove these toxins that accumulate in our cells, liver, and organs, one must detox their body at a cellular level. Clinically, I see a decrease in inflammation with my patients once someone has gone through a full cellular detoxification program.
Understanding that it is possible to combat coronary heart disease is a life changer and a life saver. By decreasing chronic inflammation through utilizing the above strategies, you too can avoid becoming a statistic. Don’t wait until it’s too late – start changing your lifestyle today to enjoy a better future tomorrow. Not sure where to start? Schedule a complimentary consultation to start moving forward.