• Talking Health with Dr. Carter By Dr. Lester Carter Owner, Carter Drug Store 11/12/13

    November 12, 2013

    Healthy blood pressure (part 5)

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    Heart disease, cardiovascular disease (CVD), is the leading cause of death for all Americans age 35 and older. This means men and women among all racial and ethnic groups. According the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), over 600,000 people died of heart disease in 2008, 25 percent of all deaths. In other words, one in four Americans died of heart disease in 2008.
    High blood pressure (HBP) is a major health problem in the U.S. The CDC estimates that 1 in 3 U.S. adults – about 68 million – has high blood pressure. In 2008, HBP was listed as a primary or contributing cause of death for more than 347,000 Americans. African Americans are especially susceptible, and are one of the most likely ethnic groups in the world to receive the diagnosis. HBP has also been diagnosed in two-thirds of Americans over 65 and in a growing number of young adults and children.

    Supplement your health
    In addition to dietary changes, taking supplements can help to lower HBP and to maintain already healthy blood pressure. If your readings are over 115/75 and you are not currently on medication for HBP, give this program a 30-day trial. Many nutrients affect blood pressure similarly to medications. Thus, if you’re on medication/s, consult your physician. Unhappily, many older people will also need medication to lower their blood pressure.
    In addition to my own work, the information below relies heavily on that of researchers at the Life Extension Foundation.
    1. Control heartbeat strength
    • Magnesium: 350 – 1,500 mg daily
    • Hawthorn Berry extract: 3 – 5 caps daily, or drops per label
    2. Regulate blood volume
    • Potassium: Only available at 99 mg tablets. Eat potassium rich foods.
    • Calcium: 1,000 – 1,200 mg daily (See section “Magic Minerals”)
    3. Antioxidants (Support blood vessel integrity.)
    • CoQ10: 100 – 300 mg daily (of the ubiquinol form of coenzyme Q10)
    • Lycopene: 15 – 30 mg daily
    • Vitamin C: 1,000 – 2,000 mg daily
    4. Vasodilators(Blood vessel dilation helps reduce blood pressure.)
    • Grape seed extract: 150 mg daily
    • L-Arginine: 1,600 mg three times daily between meals*
    • Soy isoflavones: 135 – 270 mg daily
    *If you have diabetes and/or significant heart, kidney or liver disease, talk with your healthcare professional before using arginine.
    5. Other helpful nutrients
    • Vitamin D: 5,000 – 8,000 IU daily, depending on blood test results
    • Vitamin K2: 100 mcg
    • Garlic: standardized extract: 1,500 – 6,000 mg daily
    • Fish oil: 2,000 – 4,000 mg daily
    Information on “other helpful nutrients”: Vitamin D receptors are located within the blood vessels. Studies comparing higher and lower amounts of serum vitamin D reveal an increased risk for HBP among those with lower amounts. NHANES reports that nearly 75 percent of light-skinned and up
    to 90 percent of dark-skinned Americans get insufficient vitamin D.
    For several years, we have harped on the importance of vitamin K2. This is because K2 makes sure calcium goes to the bones and doesn’t lay down in the arteries and form plaque. Animal studies indicate that K2 supplements can reverse calcified arteries. (Schurgers 2007) Garlic has long been recognized for its effects on HBP. Besides supporting heart health, fish oil studies have shown reductions in blood pressure. Studies show that these foods taken daily display blood pressure lowering properties: whey protein (1 srvg), celery (1/2 c. cooked), and pomegranate juice (1/4 c.).
    HBP is dangerous. Be sure you know what your measurements are and remember, you’re not safe unless your readings are 115/75 or lower. Meanwhile – Eat right. Love a lot. Heal your heart. And, get out from under the pressure.
    Source: Nutrition News 2012 VOL XXXVI, No. 6

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