Brain and Heart Health
As it turns out the very lifestyle and nutritional strategies that support a healthy cardiovascular system preserve, protect and extend cognitive health as well. 20% of cardiac output, after all, goes right to the brain, delivering nutrients and oxygen and removing harmful toxins. Not surprising that a compromised heart is a compromised brain. Which means, in a nutshell, we help the heart; we help the brain.
Cardiovascular disease is the number one killer in America claiming 1.1 million lives per year, 5.3 million Americans are currently afflicted by Alzheimer’s and many more suffer to some degree or another from dementia. Given such grim statistics it is doubly tragic that the public has been fed (and swallowed) an absolute mountain of misinformation concerning prevention and treatment. Since the early 50’s medical orthodoxy has blamed cholesterol and saturated fat as the principle causes of cardiovascular disease claiming that fat intake of over 10% of total diet will inevitably clog up and harden arteries leading to everything from poor circulation to angina to heart attack. .
A recent meta-analysis of studies following 347,747 subjects between 5 and 23 years saturated fat intake had zero correlation with cardiovascular disease (Am Journal of Clinical Nutrition 91, no. 3 (2010): 502-509). Another comparative study done in the Netherlands a couple of years later reached the same conclusion. As did one conducted in Japan. Plus, there have been volumes written on the bad science and politics responsible for the growth of the cholesterol / fat myth. .
While it is true that one sub-category of LDL (LDL-b) cholesterol can play a damaging role in heart disease, unless a lipid protein becomes oxidized it poses no danger whatsoever to the vascular system or heart. Overall cholesterol has very little to do with the health of the heart and, because cholesterol is so hugely important in human physiology, cholesterol lowering drugs do far more harm than good. .
What does cause heart disease, principally, are:
- Chronic inflammation
- Free radical damage (especially of the delicate endothelium cells lining the arteries
- Sugar / high glycemic foods
To reclaim the health of the heart and the vascular system, then, we want establish a foundation of all 90 nutrients essential to human health (“90 For Life”), avoid sugar and starch, reduce stress and flood the body with powerful anti-oxidants to check free radicals. Dr. Wallach’s Healthy Body Brain and Heart Pak hits the mark on each front. At its core are the Beyond Tangy Tangerine (original or peach), the Beyond OsteoFx (liquid or powder) and the EFA Plus. We also include an Ultimate Selenium, a magnificent antioxidant and protector of the heart muscle, as one of the specialty products and the other specialty item is the EFA Regular. All the nerve pathways of the central nervous system (CNS) are made of essential fats. So often cognitive decline can be traced to a fatty acid deficiency resulting in a “fraying” of the nerve channels. That’s why we include the 180 count bottle of EFA Regular: to double, even triple down on the essential fatty acids.
Heart Healthy Foods
- Salmon: fish contains a healthy dose of Omega 3 fatty acids which are great for reducing bad fats in the system.
- Ground flaxseed: filled with fiber and phytoesterogens, two nutrients that support heart health
- Gluten free oatmeal: omega 3 fatty acids, magnesium, potassium, folate-filled with heart supporting minerals
- Chai seeds soaked in water: yet another rich source of good, heart-healthy fats
- Black or Kidney Beans: loaded with B-Vitamins, minerals and essential fatty acids.
- Almonds / walnuts: plant omega 3 fatty acids, vitamin E, magnesium, fiber and heart healthy fats
- Tuna: folate and niacin, two nutrients that keep the heart beating properly and reduces blood pressure.
- Blueberries: contains beta-carotene, lutein, anthocynanins and a whole host of other antoxidants.
- Spinach: loaded with lutein and B vitamins to support healthy heart function.
Brain Healthy Foods
- Blueberries: researchers have found that blueberries protect the brain from oxidative stress and may reduce the effects of age related conditions like Alzheimer's and dementia.
- Wild Salmon: contain Omega-3 fatty acids and anti-inflammatory nutrients that provide a protective layer for the brain.
- Nuts and Seeds: great sources of Vitamin E, an antioxidant that can cross the blood-brain barrier and fight damaging stress.
- Chai seeds soaked in water: yet another rich source of good, brain-healthy fats
- Avocados: contains mono-saturated fat that helps blood flow, more blood flow to the brain equals a healthier brain.
- Freshly Brewed Tea: tea has just enough caffeine (not too much) to help boost memory and focus. Also coffee has a class of antioxidants called catechines which protects the brain.