Keep Your Heart Happy
Keeping your heart happy is important (to you and the ones who love you). It is the key to a happy life!
Heart disease is the leading cause of death in the United States, and it can be prevented with the help of some essential pieces of knowledge.
Let's unravel the mystery of the heart and learn how to build a happy heart plan.
We all need to feed our hearts the proper vitamins, minerals, herbs and nutrients to keep our chemical systems running at their peak. I have been working with so many people lately who are dealing with these issues.
I see more heart problems related to the Rate, Rhythm and Tone than ever before in my career.
I believe one of the root causes of these electrical problems can be traced back to nutrient deficiencies and social connection struggles we have all experience.
We will go into more detail about these issues later, but for now you should know that we are here with you and ready to make a connection.
Understanding Heart Sounds: Rate, Rhythm & Tone
Your heart is your most vital organ, and it's a lot more than just a love muscle.
While the heart does indeed pump blood, its primary function is to serve as the center of your cardiovascular system and is typically the first indicator of any nutrition deficiencies.
Heart sounds are caused by the opening and closing of valves and muscle contractions indicating blood moving through your heart.
Your heart rate (the number of beats per minute), rhythm (the timing of the first and second sound), and tone (the strength of the heart sound and ability to rest between sounds) can all be affected by nutritional deficiencies.
The Heart Sound Recorder is the gold standard for capturing these heart sounds and seeing real-time changes (usually before and after ingesting nutrients).
- Rate – How fast or slow your heart is working. A normal adult resting heart rate is 60-100 beats/minute (bpm). The range for children is 80-120 bpm.
- Rhythm – How consistent your pattern of beats and rest periods are. The pattern of beats and rest periods should be regular with no extra sounds like clicks or murmurs (that show issues with valves and muscle contractions).
- Tone – This refers to how strong your muscle and valves contract and relax when pumping blood into the arteries or veins.
Supporting Healthy Rate, Rhythm and Tone
B vitamins help the body convert food into energy. B-vitamins are used in the body as a complex, helping play an important role in the nerve impulses that control the rhythm of your heart.
The best sources of B vitamins for a healthy heart are from concentrated foods. We love nutritional yeast, defatted wheat germ and rice bran because they are built on the work of Dr. Royal Lee, a pioneer in cardiovascular nutrient research. You can find these in one of the newest Standard Process product Cataplex B-Core.
Minerals such as alfalfa, iodine, and kelp help to relax the nerves and muscle tissues to improve energy production. Standard Process' Organically Bound Minerals product contains these iodine-rich ingredients that are essential for healthy metabolic and nerve processes involved in muscle function.
We also like Cardiotrophin PMG because it contains the keys to your genes used to support healthy heart tissue. A source of Micro RNA, these special substances are extracted from bovine glands and have been used for generations to support normal heart cell growth and differentiation.
Hawthorn Leaves and Flowers = Happy Heart
When it comes to supporting healthy heart functions, the elephant in the room is inflammation and poor sources of fat, these are the root causes of heart problems — the “bad guys” for our hearts are unhealthy deep fried fast food and fats, but these are everywhere...
While we can substitute poor forms of fats with healthy anti-inflammatory fats (think fish and nut oils), we can do more!
According to a study entitled Roles and Mechanisms of Hawthorn and Its Extracts on Atherosclerosis: A Review, the use of hawthorn [leaves and flowers] for the treatment of cardiovascular disease dates back to 659 AD in China.
In this review, researchers found that hawthorn extracts have lipid-lowering, antioxidant, and cardiovascular protective properties. This makes hawthorn especially popular for its anti-atherosclerotic effects.
A plethora of studies have shown that hawthorn extracts provide heart protection and anti-atherosclerotic properties and contain major bioactive components.
Hawthorn can be added to most protocols because of its safety and efficacy. Learn more about Mediherb's Hawthorn, which is by far the best on the market in our opinion.
Anti-inflammatory Diet Basics
There are a few simple steps you can take to help keep your heart healthy and your loved ones happy!
The diet recommendations are easy enough to put into practice, as is taking herbal extracts or nutritional supplements.
According the Harvard School of Medicine, you should avoid the following foods:
Foods that cause inflammation! Try to avoid or limit these foods as much as possible:
- refined carbohydrates, such as white bread and pastries
- French fries and other fried foods (we know... we love them too)
- soda and other sugar-sweetened beverages
- red meat (burgers, steaks) and processed meat (hot dogs, sausage)
- margarine, shortening, and lard
Foods that promote inflammation resolution! An anti-inflammatory diet should include these foods:
- root vegetables, such as beets and Spanish black radish
- spices, such as turmeric and garlic
- healthy fats, such as avocado and olive oils
- green leafy vegetables, such as spinach, kale, and collards
- nuts like almonds and walnuts
- whole grain and grain extracts, such as wheat germ, buckwheat, rice bran, and legumes, such as lentils
- fatty fish like salmon, mackerel, tuna, and cod
- fruits such as strawberries, blueberries, cherries, and oranges
Unfortunately, many people do not like the healthy anti-inflammatory foods listed above. These people should consider supplementing these ingredients in products such as Standard Process' Cataplex B-Core, Cod Liver Oil, or Mediherb's Turmeric Forte.
These supplements contain vitamins and minerals that support a healthy inflammatory response as well as omega-3 fatty acids.
Anti-inflammation, Antioxidants and Healthy Fats
The truth of the matter is that medicine really focuses on the consequences of inflammation, oxidation (which you can think of as rust!) and fats.
Good thing you now are starting to see the other side of the story. Antioxidants are substances that protect your body from the harmful effects of free radicals (which is the same thing as rust) that are found in refined carbohydrates, processed meat, and adulterated fats.
Free radicals are a byproduct of metabolism and can damage important cellular components like DNA. Vitamins A, C and E are all antioxidants that help fight free radicals in the body.
It's important to note that not all antioxidants are created equal. We think that antioxidants from food sources such as liver and grains such as buckwheat contain forms of Vitamins A and C that humans have consumed for thousands and thousands of years. Our ancestors knew these whole foods and ate them freely. We have simply lost our way over the last 120 years or so.
It's important to keep your body in balance. Your diet is a key part of that, and it's also important to remember that your digestion plays a crucial role in how well your heart functions on a daily basis.
Healthy fats help maintain the balance of omega 3 acids (which can be found in salmon or other oily fish). Omega acids have been linked to helping reduce inflammation and improve cardiovascular health, as well as boosting brain function!
Fish oils are also well-known to naturally thin blood, making it easier to pump blood through a weak system.
Important Note! Fats are only beneficial if you can digest them.
That's right, you need to breakdown large "globules" into smaller "particles" in order to make it into your blood stream.
One way that you can help improve your fat digestion is by supplementing Zypan which combines enzymes and acids to facilitate healthy protein and fat digestion.
Bile-promoting ingredients such as beet juice powder found in Cataplex B-Core will also help fats break into smaller droplets the body can use.
Heart nutrient deficiencies are no laughing matter.
If left untreated, they can have serious consequences.
However, there are many natural ways to boost your heart health and reduce the risk of developing these deficiencies.
By improving your diet and taking supplements that support healthy digestion and cardiovascular function, you can improve your overall wellness.
A happy heart plan should contain the following essential elements:
- adequate cardiovascular exercise and healthy stress management
- anti-inflammatory diet that includes healthy fats and antioxidants
- nutrients that support healthy rate, rhythm and tone
- herbal extracts, such as Hawthorn, Turmeric and/or Garlic
- digestive support to full breakdown dietary fats and proteins
We're here to help you keep your heart healthy and your family and friends happy. If you've got a friend or family member who needs help with their heart, share this blog post with them!
Helpful links and references
1. Wu M, Liu L, Xing Y, Yang S, Li H, Cao Y. Roles and Mechanisms of Hawthorn and Its Extracts on Atherosclerosis: A Review. Front Pharmacol. 2020 Feb 21;11:118. doi: 10.3389/fphar.2020.00118. PMID: 32153414; PMCID: PMC7047282.
2. Udovcic M, Pena RH, Patham B, Tabatabai L, Kansara A. Hypothyroidism and the Heart. Methodist Debakey Cardiovasc J. 2017 Apr-Jun;13(2):55-59. doi: 10.14797/mdcj-13-2-55. PMID: 28740582; PMCID: PMC5512679.
3. Heart Sound Recorder, a computer-based program that uses the principles of auscultation to acquire, display, record and save heart sounds. https://www.hsrinfo.com/
5. Stromsnes K, Correas AG, Lehmann J, Gambini J, Olaso-Gonzalez G. Anti-Inflammatory Properties of Diet: Role in Healthy Aging. Biomedicines. 2021 Jul 30;9(8):922. doi: 10.3390/biomedicines9080922. PMID: 34440125; PMCID: PMC8389628.
6. Pallazola VA, Davis DM, Whelton SP, Cardoso R, Latina JM, Michos ED, Sarkar S, Blumenthal RS, Arnett DK, Stone NJ, Welty FK. A Clinician's Guide to Healthy Eating for Cardiovascular Disease Prevention. Mayo Clin Proc Innov Qual Outcomes. 2019 Aug 1;3(3):251-267. doi: 10.1016/j.mayocpiqo.2019.05.001. PMID: 31485563; PMCID: PMC6713921.