Friday, June 28, 2013

Important News on preventing heart disease....

Today's Post:  Friday, 6-28-2013

We’ve made several of these recommendations for quite some time now.

But there is a surprising new method that may help.  And there is even more recent confirmation in several areas.

1.  Notably, high fructose corn syrup, sugars and refined grains are looking even more to be heart attack starters that should rarely if ever be eaten or drunk!

a) Why?  The more you eat, the more you boost the triglycerides in your blood!  And the more triglycerides you have, the more small particle LDL you have causing heart disease by depositing in your blood vessel walls, causing inflammation, and even more repair attempts by your body.  That causes plaque that begins to close your blood vessels and when loose plaque breaks off in partly to mostly closed blood vessels you get obstructive strokes and heart attacks.

Does that mean that eating or drinking a lot of those things is heart attack starter!  It definitely does!

But though we’ve known these things for some time, until just recently, doctors have not been aware of or used this information.

NOW, however, that may change!  Recent research has found that high triglyceride levels are THREE times as likely to predict heart attacks and related events as high LDL cholesterol.

This news will get to most doctors eventually. 

And, the present status of most Americans is dire.  The average American, between regular soft drinks and refined grain foods and breads, and frequent packaged snacks and desserts and adding sugar to things has triglyceride levels between 150 and 250.  Many have even higher levels than 250!  I talked to an unfortunate young man once who was over 300!

What is a probably safe and protective level?  Less than 50!  The amount considered “normal” is 150; but in terms of safety anything over 100 is risky!

Specifically, high fructose corn syrup is the worst one and there is no safe amount of it.  It causes even more heart disease, type 2 diabetes, and obesity than real sugar.  It also contains mercury often enough, it should be banned for that reason alone.  Even worse, the version put into foods that are sold for products intended for people who are trying to lose weight have extra fructose.  That means they are extra addictive, extra fattening, and even worse heart attack starters.  Yikes!  ALWAYS read labels even for foods you have eaten since you were little.  If high fructose corn syrup is on the label, stop buying and eating that food. 

Refined grain foods, particularly wheat, spike blood sugar as much or more than sugar.  GMO and hybrid wheat which is in the vast majority of refined grain foods in the marketplace is even fattening, addictive, and harmful in other ways.  Increasingly, health knowledgeable people make an extra effort to avoid refined grain wheat.  In addition to all its other problems, the form of gluten in it is likely to cause the people eating it to then need to avoid all gluten products.

To do this, you need to avoid ANY grains or breads or baked goods to some extent. 

There ARE grains and grain like foods and flours that avoid using wheat and are low glycemic or gluten free or both.

 (Barley has gluten but is low glycemic and people who eat it tend to become leaner. 

Quinoa, is higher protein and lower glycemic than other whole grains including brown rice; it has more fiber by far and is lower glycemic than white rice; it has zero gluten; AND since it has its OWN insect resistance naturally there is no need to spray it with pesticides or make a GMO version. 

Buckwheat flour by Bob’s Red Mill has zero gluten; and though it is a bit high glycemic works well in recipes. 

Almond flour and lentil flour have zero grains and are moderately high in protein and are respectively zero glycemic and low glycemic.  Some people are allergic to nuts and thus to almonds and some allergic to peanuts or soy are allergic to lentils.

The bad news is that so far, the companies that supply stores and most bakeries don’t provide foods made with these grains and grain substitutes and reliably and  totally leave out wheat flour and white rice flour.

So, you can eat these foods.  But you have to cook them yourself or have them baked to order special by a local caterer or bakery willing and able to do so.)

Sugar tastes good.  And it’s rewarding to eat.  Plus it’s far less harmful than agave which is mostly fructose and high fructose corn syrup.  Flavored sugars such as honey, black strap molasses, brown sugar, and real maple syrup taste good for that reason so you can often use less.

But even real sugar is a food that is only safe to eat a few times a week and it’s better if you eat it less than that.

One way to do that for yourself is to cut back by two to one or close to it and then get used to that level and then cut your intake in half again and then get used to it and then do it again!

(This works.  I went from having sugar with my breakfast from every single day, 14 times every two weeks to once every two weeks that way.)

Because I also eat no refined grains or high fructose corn syrup and do regular exercise and eat no hydrogenated oils and avoid tobacco smoke and take omega 3 supplements, my triglyceride readings are in the mid thirties.  (Regular, vigorous exercise and omega 3 supplements and avoiding tobacco smoke all tend to lower triglycerides and increase HDL.  So does taking niacin which I also do.  Eating hydrogenated oils also boosts the dickens out of triglycerides and I totally avoid those.)

Avoiding excess sugars prevents heart disease a second way too!

If you ingest excess sugars they tend to bond with the proteins in your body in a process called glycation.  That causes skin wrinkling and other kinds of aging!  It may well also cause damage to your telomeres.  Short telomeres cause aging directly and force the development of heart disease in several ways.

(Taking the supplement rhodiola has just been found to slow aging and age related drop offs in physical performance. That suggests a telomere protective effect.)

c) Is there more?  Yes!

Excess sugars, particularly high fructose corn syrup, especially combined with no exercise tends to cause insulin resistance, obesity, AND type 2 diabetes.

How does THAT cause heart disease?

Your body sticks the extra sugar onto ALL your LDL even the normally harmless large particle kind AND onto your red blood cells using a kind of spiky crystalline structure.

This begins to abrade the inside of your blood vessels and capillaries.  This causes inflammation and plaque build-up, heart disease in short, in your blood vessels.  And if it goes on long enough, it destroys many of your capillaries!  Some serve your heart so your blood supply to your heart can be impaired. 

Some go to your brain and this process is implicated in causing vascular dementia and Alzheimer’s disease.  Some go to your sexual parts and ruin your sex life.  And some go to your eyes and this process has caused blindness.

2.  Besides cutting WAY back on sugar and refined grains what is the best way to protect your heart, prevent type 2 diabetes or help force it to go away, and protect yourself from moderate high blood pressure?

Research shows that doing regular, vigorous exercise most days of every week does exactly that.  A blend of burst cardio in interval or variable cardio and progressive strength training does just that.

It also slows aging enough to show it prevents or tends to prevent the shortening of your telomeres.

3.  Why go to all that trouble when you can take statin drugs and drugs to lower high blood pressure?

Because these drugs cause harm and often big drops in your quality of life and cost a lot of money and protect you from very little to not at all!


Worse, most doctors do not know or believe this yet.

This is extremely unfortunate.

Is there research supporting this?

YES.  There is now!

We’ve known for some time that for close to 1 to 2 % of the people taking statin drugs prevent heart attacks.

That means that 98% pay and are subject to the side effects notably cataracts, 3% get those who would not have done so otherwise, and type 2 diabetes and increased rates of heart failure and are not protected.

Worse, there is a genetic test few doctors know to do first which costs about $150.  Statins are even less protective for most people they have the wrong genes!  Only in the smaller group are better rates of protection seen.

And most of those people shouldn’t take statins either!

That’s because statins do NOT over-ride doing all these heart attack starter bad habits even in that group.  It’s simple really.  One unit of protection is not as strong as six units of heart attack starter!

And removing all six units of heart attack starter makes further drug protection of little added value!

And there is more bad news for statins now!

The higher dosage you take of statins, the stronger the version you take, and the longer you are on them, the more doing the kind of exercise that is most protective causes damage your muscles and energy level sustain.  This can be irreversible damage and even kill you!

Meanwhile if you do that kind of exercise you get much stronger heart attack protection than statins can give you.

4.  What about high blood pressure drugs?

Except in small doses for some drugs in some people all of them tend to ruin your quality of life and make you feel sick and impaired every day you take them.

But isn’t this protective and saving you from heart attacks and strokes? 

Recent studies show it usually is NOT doing so!

Many years ago the Jupiter research found that for people with blood pressure over 160 over 100, taking the blood pressure drugs to drop it below that DID cut heart attacks, strokes, and deaths.

(It did NOT do so for the group with lower high blood pressures between 140 over 90 and 159 over 99.  But the doctors and the drug companies ignored that.)

More recently a study was done that something DOES exist that cuts heart attacks, strokes, and deaths for people with lower high blood pressures between 140 over 90 and 159 over 99.


Regular vigorous exercise does it!  (That’s the same kind that taking statins makes it dangerous to do!)

The study that established that then tested to see if adding blood pressure drugs to the exercise would lower heart attacks, strokes, and deaths further.

Nope. It had ZERO such effect!

More recently a study by the Cochrane group simply looked to see if using blood pressure drugs in the group of people with lower high blood pressures between 140 over 90 and 159 over 99 would cut down on heart attacks, strokes, and deaths.

Nope.  They found what the other two studies did.  It had zero such effect!

Want to avoid heart attacks, strokes, and death and have a good quality of life?

Stop exposing yourself to or ingesting heart attack starters and get regular vigorous exercise.

And, except in special circumstances, AVOID statin drugs and high blood pressure drugs!

Labels: ,


Post a Comment

<< Home