February is American Heart Month, so take some time out to think about all your heart does, and what you can do to fully support its health. For more information on heart-healthy tips and tricks, search “Heart Health” on our website,#HeartHealth on Twitter, or visit ourFacebook page to see what readers are doing to support their hearts.
The heart is a muscle that acts as a pump to send blood around your body. When it either gets damaged by heart attacks or infections (cardiomyopathy), has a malfunctioning heart valve, or grows too big (e.g., from long standing and untreated high blood pressure), it may no longer be able to pump blood effectively. Improving the efficiency of the heart muscle can be helpful for most heart problems that are severe enough to cause symptoms (e.g., chest pain, shortness of breath, swelling in your ankles that persists when you wake in the morning — mild swelling at night is common even in healthy people).
Treating the underlying high blood pressure, valve problem, or angina may also be important. Heart valve surgery is rarely recommended unnecessarily, and cardiologists are very good with this issue. Follow your physician’s advice for lowering blood pressure as well.
Fortunately, natural remedies do an excellent job at improving heart muscle efficiency, and even modest improvements can improve function dramatically. The following recipe can help anyone with heart disease (unless they have associated kidney failure, in which case the magnesium part of the treatment should be monitored by their physician).
Take these nutrients for six weeks to see the optimal effects. The benefits for heart health are often dramatic! Most people choose to stay on them, though they can often lower the dose.
Ribose powder looks and tastes like sugar and is a key to energy production in the body—including the heart. I recommend 1 scoop (5 grams), three times per day for six weeks, then reduce dosage to twice per day. This nutrient is outstanding for heart disease and is the most important! You will likely be amazed after six weeks on it!
Coenzyme Q10 (use Enzymatic Therapy or Vitaline brand chewable wafers—brand and form are critical for this nutrient). Take 400 milligrams per day for six weeks, then reduce dosage to 200 milligrams per day. This nutrient is especially critical for anyone on cholesterol lowering medications, even if there is no heart problem, as these medications cause Coenzyme Q10 deficiency, and this nutrient is critical for energy production.
Magnesium 200 milligrams per day and B-Complex 50+ milligrams per day. You can typically find these in a good multi-nutrient powder. Take as directed daily, but if it causes gas or loose stools, decrease the powder to a half of a dose per day. Magnesium not only increases your heart muscles strength, but also markedly decreases the tendency to abnormal heart rhythms.
Acetyl-L-Carnitine 500 milligrams three times per day for six weeks, then reduce dosage to 500 milligrams per day (and it can often simply be stopped).
Love and blessings,