How does Potassium Rich Diet Lowers the Blood Pressure?

potassium hypertension

Foods that are rich in potassium are important in controlling high blood pressure or hypertension because potassium diminishes the effects of sodium in the body. The more potassium you eat, the more sodium is excreted in urine. Potassium also aids to decrease the tension in the walls of stiff blood vessels, which helps further to lower the blood pressure.

Supplementing potassium through daily diet is suggested for adults with blood pressure above 120/80 mmHg who are otherwise healthy. But be aware Potassium can be dangerous for patients with chronic kidney disease, it is a condition that affects the ability of the body to handle potassium. People who take prescription medications should also consult their physician before supplementing potassium to their diet.

The prescribed potassium consumption for an average adult is 4,700 milligrams (mg) per day. Many of the elements of the DASH (Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension) diet — fruits, fresh vegetables, dairy products and fish — are rich and natural sources of potassium. For example, a medium-sized banana has about 400 mg of potassium and half a cup of mashed sweet potatoes has 470 mg.

Here is a list of other potassium-rich foods include:

• Apricot Juice or Whole Apricots
• Honeydew melon and Cantaloupe
• Avocados
• Milk and Other Dairy Products
• Fat-free yogurt
• Grapefruit or Grapefruit juice (Grapefruit Juice can interact with cholesterol Lowering Drugs)
• Green Vegetables
• Halibut
• Lima beans
• Molasses
• Mushrooms
• Orange Juice and Whole Oranges
• Potatoes
• Peas
• Prunes
• Dates and Raisins
• Spinach
• Tomatoes
• Tuna Fish
Potassium-rich diet is one of the components of the Blood pressure lowering plan. Even though potassium can balance out the blood pressure-raising effects of sodium, eating more potassium should be combined with your efforts to get rid of that excess salt in your meals and develop other heart-healthy eating and lifestyle habits.

Is it possible to have high levels of potassium?

Excess potassium can be harmful to people with kidney disorders. As weak kidneys are unable able to remove excess potassium from the blood, and because of this, too much potassium may build up in the body.

Often, like hypertension, there are not many symptoms of high potassium levels in the blood (hyperkalemia). A person with high levels of potassium in the blood can have pain abdomen, weak or irregular pulse and can even faint in some instances.

One should always consult with a healthcare professional before buying any over-the-counter potassium supplement. You should also ask your cardiologist before trying any salt substitutes, Such substitutes can raise potassium in people with certain health conditions as discussed above.

3 Tips to Create a Heart Healthy Workplace – Infographic

Heart health just isn’t about one factor. Take exercise, for example. You can workout every day of the week, but unless you also eat well, your heart may not be able to reap the full benefits of that sweat time. And the same with eating: If you rely on lean meat and salads and fruit, that’s great. But without a strong muscle (your heart), your body will be lacking.

And heart health doesn’t stop being a concern for certain hours of the day. While what you do at home for your heart health is important, what you do while you’re at work is important, too. If you’re completely sedentary at work, that impacts your heart. If you indulge in donuts and sugary drinks at work, that works against your heart health. If you experience severe stress at work, that impacts your heart too. What else should you be concerned about for your heart health at work? This graphic explains it.

Keep Your Heart Healthy at the Office

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Top 3 Breathing Exercises for lowering High Blood Pressure
Top Foods and Supplements for Reversing High Blood Pressure [Video]

Blue Heron Health News – Blood Pressure Program Review

Blue heron health news blood pressure program

Blue Heron Health News -Blood Pressure Program is a simple and yet highly effective program that’s been proven to treat high blood pressure and minimize its complications. It might seem absurd that performing 3 easy breathing exercises a day can enhance your health while also reducing your blood pressure but the proof is in the pages of the manual.

The research and expertise that has been put into this program are unquestionably mind-blowing. As you commence to read through the pages and listen to the audio recordings, everything will start making sense. You will begin to realize why these three exercises work so wonderfully, and more importantly, why you should start reducing the dose of your prescription medications. By following this program, you can receive the incredible results without the side effects and the high price tag of the prescription medications. So, if you’re willing to make the switch to a natural and healthier option for treating high blood pressure, you’ve come to the right place.

Blue Heron Health News Blood Pressure Program Outline

This is an online system that teaches you 3 specific exercises which if practiced regularly, have proven to lower blood pressure. All you need is 9 minutes per day. However, it is suggested to do all three exercises per day to enhance the results, and considering how practical these exercises are, this is really easy to do. In fact, the exercises are so simple that anyone can do them regardless of time and place. Whether you are suffering from hypertension, coronary artery disease, Stroke, anxiety or stress, these exercises can produce positive results within weeks.

Author of Blue Heron Blood Pressure Program – Christian Goodman

The creator of Blue Heron Blood Pressure Program is Christian Goodman. After his long-suffering from severe hypertension, he was keen to find a natural solution that was just as effective as prescription drugs, without the possible side effects. In fact, he discovered several studies that linked high blood pressure medication to increased the risk of coronary heart disease and stroke. So, this was his motivation to get off prescription medications and find a natural way to deal with his situation. And that’s what he did.

However, Christian Goodman isn’t just some random guy. He is a very renowned natural health researcher, with a number of published articles across the health industry, from online portals to physical health journals. So, not only does he possess the personal experience, but he also has the professional expertise.

What’s Covered in Blue Heron Health News – Blood Pressure Program?

Once you buy in the program, you will soon learn about the value of natural methods. Helping you to decrease your dependence on medications, the easy exercises found in this program can be life-changing. Instead of concealing the symptoms, this plan will help you to target the source of your current condition.

High blood pressure can have grave consequences on your health and quality of life, which is why there is no better time than today to take action.

The main focus of this program is the exercises, a short presentation describes minute details of the program and what you can expect in terms of how soon the program will start showing the results. For the best results, you should perform all three exercises daily — however, there are alternative routines that you can follow.

Once you practice these exercises a couple of times, you will not require the audio portion anymore. The key here is persistence — you need to practice these exercises daily, and take them seriously.

Money Back Guarantee

Now, if you don’t notice the results in a week, don’t give up. The program offers a 60 Day Money Back Guarantee which enables you to try the program for 2 months before deciding whether it’s something you’d wish to stay with. This is relevant because everyone is different and people experience the system in different ways. It might take a little longer than a week for you to see results. However, if you choose to stick to these three exercises each day, you will gradually see your blood pressure go down within the normal range. More importantly, you can keep it at normal levels as long as you continue performing the exercises.

Immediate Access

The best part is that you get instant access to Blue Heron health news -Blood Pressure Program as soon as you purchase it. You will get access to membership area where you can download the written manual and the audio files. There is even a choice to pay an extra $2 for a physical CD if that’s what you prefer.

This is a tremendous feature because having immediate access means you can start the healing process immediately. That’s also not to mention that having the content downloaded onto your desktop, laptop, smartphone or tablet also means that you can perform the exercises whenever or wherever you are. Whether you are on holiday, visiting relatives out of town, working late hours at the office or relaxing in the living room, you will have access to what you need to lower your blood pressure naturally.

Conclusion

If you are suffering from high blood pressure and you want to do something about it to decrease your chance of future illness, the Blue Heron Health News- Blood Pressure Exercise Program deserves a try. The good news is that it comes with an 8-week money back guarantee. This means you can try it for the first 60 days and if it does not work for you, then you can request a full refund on the course. So you can try this program on the risk of the author.
With really nothing to lose, it’s certainly worth finding out whether or not this blood pressure advice will work for you. If they do, they could drastically assist you to improve your health so that you don’t have to worry about blood pressure anymore.

Click Here to Order the Program…

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12 Steps To Lower Blood Pressure Naturally Without Drugs

Top 3 Breathing Exercises for lowering High Blood Pressure

Top Foods and Supplements for Reversing High Blood Pressure [Video]

12 Steps To Lower Blood Pressure Naturally Without Drugs

lower blood pressure naturally

So, you’ve found out that you have raised blood pressure. You do not need to worry. There are numerous ways to lower blood pressure naturally. Here’s a practical plan of action for natural blood pressure control —

Proven ways to Lower Blood Pressure Naturally

 

1. Quit smoking – Tobacco stiffens the walls of blood vessels. Smoking is one of the biggest risk factors for Heart Attack, stroke, and Chronic airway disease. If you can’t stop cold turkey, ask your doctor for help in developing a plan.

2. Time to get Active – Person suffering from high blood pressure should normally walk for an average of at least 30 to 40 minutes a day. You don’t have to join a fitness club or start lifting weights, even reasonable walking is considered great. Ask a trainer to develop a plan that’s right for your needs. Exercise is a habit just like any other, once you get into the routine, you’ll get addicted to feeling great.

3. Keep a check on salt intake – You’ve probably heard this advice before, and it’s true, but not for everyone. Around 58% of people with high blood pressure are “salt sensitive.” If you are salt sensitive, it’s best to keep sodium intake to no more than 2,400 milligrams a day, or ideally under 1,500 mg a day. Fast foods and processed items are packed with sodium. If you maintain a “salt log” for a particular day, you’ll be amazed at just how much it is in our diets. You can easily exceed the entire days recommended amount in one fast food meal.

4. Consume Pottasium rich food items- Most people eat a sodium to potassium ratio of 2:1 – we eat twice as much sodium as we do potassium. The perfect ratio for blood pressure control is 1:5 – we should be consuming five times more potassium than sodium. Excellent dietary sources of potassium are avocado, apricots, cantaloupe, bananas, honeydew, lima beans, orange silk, potatoes, prunes, spinach, tomatoes, and squash. Another way to reduce sodium and get more potassium is by changing your table salt to potassium-salt products like ‘NoSalt’ and ‘NuSalt’ – both are available at most supermarkets.

Read More – Top Foods and Supplements for Reversing High Blood Pressure [Video]

5. Get Rid of Heavy Metals – Here we’re talking about cadmium, lead, and mercury – all of which are linked to hypertension or high blood pressure. For instance, if you live in an old house with lead pipes, you might have lead poisoning – which can impair internal organs and cause high blood pressure.

Are you a Smoker? Tobacco fumes contain cadmium. Some Dental Fillings may contain mercury. One can find out unhealthy levels of heavy metals in the body through a test called ‘hair mineral analysis.’

6. Maintain your target weight. Do you know what your ideal weight is? Most people don’t. Simple solution: ask your doctor. Extra weight makes your heart work overtime. In nearly all cases, high blood pressure is reduced or eliminated along with unwanted weight. Losing weight isn’t one size fits all as everyone is different. Ask your nutritionist to help you develop a custom plan that’s right for you.

7. Keep a check on refined carbohydrates (sugar) –Sugar is a key factor in atherosclerosis (a condition in which fatty material collects along the walls of the arteries). Sugar in meals causes spikes of the hormone insulin. Elevated insulin, in turn, is associated with increased triglycerides, cholesterol, higher risk of cardiovascular disease, type II diabetes and high blood pressure.

8. Watch your alcohol Intake. No more than one drink per day for women and two for men. An excess amount of alcohol is a leading cause of high blood pressure and arrhythmias (Irregular heart rate).

9. Avoid Caffeine. In some individuals, caffeine can cause a surge in blood pressure. It is a great idea to reduce the caffeinated drinks.

10. Eat fresh and healthy. Learn more about DASH Diet (DASH stands for Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension). This diet is rich in fruits, veggies, whole grains and “low-fat, high-protein” food options. People who followed such diet in a clinical study had average blood pressure reductions of 11.4 systolic and 5.5 diastolic. You know the all too true old cliché: You are what you eat.

11. Get enough sleep –Emerging study proposes that sleep deprivation and high blood pressure are linked. Skip that last hour of late night TV instead wake refreshed and enjoy your day

12. Manage your stress – We live in a time when people are exposed to more stress than our bodies were designed to handle. Just like you wouldn’t skip a shower, or brushing your teeth, or not eat for a whole day, you need to make time every day for deep relaxation. TV time and surfing the internet don’t count – those are the potato chips of the relaxation world. Guided Breathing session, is one of the simplest, quickest and most powerful ways to get your daily portion of deep relaxation.

I would also recommend watching a video by my friend -Christian Goodman, explaining simple blood pressure exercises, proven to help lower your blood pressure below 120/80 – starting today…

Recommended Reading –

Top 3 Breathing Exercises for lowering High Blood Pressure Naturally without Medications

 

Top 3 Breathing Exercises for lowering High Blood Pressure

Breathing exercises for lowering high blood pressure

 

High blood pressure or hypertension is one of the leading health issues that people of different ages suffer across the world. Looking only at the US, 1 in every 3 adults across the country suffers from high blood pressure. What’s troubling is that only less than 50 percent of these people with hypertension have it under control. This means that such patients have more probability of severe cardiac diseases in the future. In this post, I have compiled one of the most effective Breathing Exercises for lowering High Blood Pressure.

According to recent studies and researchers, hypertension is a growing problem and can be caused by various factors including high levels of sodium intake, obesity, lack of physical activity and smoking. One other reason and most common these days, for hypertension is stress. As people are getting busier each day their regard for their own well being is growing thinner; leading them to overstrain their bodies, that as a result can cause various lifestyle diseases like hypertension, Coronary heart disease, and diabetes.

Fortunately, this is one issue can be dealt with the right measures. There are allopathic, homeopathic and various alternative ways to lower high blood pressure. One of these ways is through breathing exercises (Exercises recommended by Yoga Practitioners)!

Since the low supply of oxygen to the brain and body can raise the blood pressure, the quickest way to lower it is to change your breathing patterns. With more oxygen in your bloodstream, the heart has to work less hard which in turn lowers the blood pressure.

What is Normal Blood Pressure?

Before we move on to learning the Breathing Exercises for lowering High Blood Pressure, we all should know the difference between good and bad blood pressure. Since its basic understanding is essential, we will start by explaining what blood pressure is.

Blood pressure is the measure of pressure exerted by the blood against the blood vessels as it travels through them to various parts of the body. This pressure can be affected and increased by various factors such as high blood volume, elevated blood flow coming from the heart due to stress or other reasons; and hardened blood vessels as a result of age and other diseases. Blood pressure also increases if the person has clogged vessels, as blood has to exert extra force in order to pass through narrow passages.

One can measure the blood pressure at home, or go to a physician to get it checked using a sphygmomanometer. The readings for blood pressure are measured using two different points and are communicated as fractions; for example 120/80 mm Hg. The higher number or point is called the systolic pressure and it measures the pressure of the blood surging into your blood vessels when your heart contracts or squeezes. While the lower number in the fraction is called the diastolic pressure that measures the pressure in the blood vessels when the heart is at rest.

According to the American Heart Association, the ranges for blood pressure are as follows :

Blood Pressure Category Systolic (mm HG) (upper number) Diastolic (mm Hg) (lower number)
Normal < 120 mm Hg and < 80 mm HG
Elevated 120 – 129 mm Hg and <80 mm HG
High Blood Pressure

(Hypertension) Stage 1

130-139 mm Hg or 80-89 mm Hg
High Blood Pressure

(Hypertension) Stage 2

140 mm Hg or Higher or 90 mm Hg or Higher
High Blood Pressure

(Hypertensive Crisis)

Consult your Doctor Immediately

>180 mm Hg and/or > 120 mm Hg

The trickiest part is that hypertension or high blood pressure does not exhibit any symptoms until the problem becomes severe causing serious health conditions including heart attack and stroke. That’s why cardiologists recommend that you get your blood pressure checked regularly to catch it in the pre-hypertension phase i.e. when the readings are between 120/80 mm Hg and 139/89 mm Hg, so it can be managed easily.

There are several methods for lowering high blood pressure and stabilizing it. From prescription medications for severe cases to natural remedies for mild cases of hypertension, there is a way of controlling it for every patient. What is important is to take immediate action to lower your blood pressure if your readings are even a little bit outside the normal range.

One of the more natural methods for lowering high blood pressure is through breathing exercises. I am not asking you to stop your blood pressure medicine altogether and to rely on these breathing exercises. But such exercises, if practiced regularly can drastically decrease the dose of antihypertensive medication. In mild to moderate cases, the patients have experienced complete withdrawal of medications by regular practice of breathing or yogic exercises.

Breathing Exercises for lowering High Blood Pressure

Breathing exercises have been studied and approved by many experts and researchers to not only keep the mind calm and body functioning at its best, but also to lower high blood pressure. The regulation of breathing allows the bloodstream to get more oxygen easily, lowering the activity and pressure your heart has to exert.

In order to control the pressure on your heart and blood vessels, all you need to do is to rely on a certain way of breathing. In fact, the FDA has approved a Biofeedback device as a non-pharmacological adjuvant treatment for lowering high blood pressure. This device is used by individuals to regulate their breathing cycles to under 10 per minute and accustom their body to longer exhalations. The studies showed that such device with regular use can lower high blood pressure as much as a low dose pill would have. This study and success of the device became the ultimate proof for the role of breathing exercises of being beneficial and functional for treating high blood pressure.

But, the use of the device is not mandatory to reap the benefits of breathing exercises. There are numerous breathing exercises for various levels of practitioners to help them treat hypertension.

Manipulating your system to modify your breathing patterns in order to reduce hypertension can take a certain amount of time and practice.

Discussed below are exercises for all three levels of difficulty, i.e. beginner, intermediate and difficult, these exercises help people with high blood pressure, and also build their respiratory system to be more efficient.

Breathing Exercises for Beginners:

For people who have never practiced breathing exercises, particularly for lowering blood pressure, practicing the following three exercises will be beneficial.

1. Equal Breathing also called as “Sama Vritti”

Practiced by yogis and meditation enthusiasts to gain stillness and balance of their consciousness through regulation of breathing, Sama Vritti or equal ratio breathing is the easiest breathing exercise for beginners.

How to do it:

The exercise is pretty simple and is the basic level of pranayama for beginners. To start the exercise: you need to inhale through the nose-counting 1 to 4, and then exhale through the nose for a count of four. Breathing in and out through the nose adds natural resistance to the breath, bringing the body back to its normal state. after practicing this exercise for some time, one can do the same exercise for 6 or 8 counts.

The goal of the practice is to make your lungs inhale more oxygen during a cycle in order to calm your nervous system, reduce hypertension and increase focus.

When to do it:

The simple answer is, anytime and anywhere you feel comfortable doing it. But this exercise is most effective when it is practiced right before you go to bed. The systematic breathing pattern relieves your tense nerves, reduces hypertension and helps take your mind off distractions, preparing you for better sleep.

Video Credit – Michelle Brown

2. Progressive Relaxation Technique

This technique Uses the whole body in harmonized collaboration with your breathing, this technique not only reduces your blood pressure but also releases the tension in stiff muscles.

How to do it:

In order to reduce muscle tension and lower blood pressure, start by closing your eyes followed by tensing and relaxing each muscle group, for 2-3 seconds each. Start with your feet and toes, moving up to your calves, knees, thighs, rear, chest, arms, hands, neck, jaw and the eyes. You need to do this all while maintaining deep and slow breathing. Take in a deep slow breath through your nose while tensing your muscle, and count till 5, then slowly exhale through your nose and release the tensed muscle.

When to do it:

Like Sama Vritti, you can do this exercise anytime and anywhere you feel comfortable practicing it.

Video Credit – Mark Connelly

3. Abdominal Breathing Technique

Engaging the core, particularly your diaphragm with your breathing is practiced to expand the capacity of your lungs and get your core stronger.

How to do it:

Find yourself a comfortable spot and your favorite sitting position and start the exercise by placing one hand on the chest and the other on your belly. Take a deep breath in through your nose, making sure to inflate your abdomen (not the chest) with substantial air to stretch your lungs. Slowly exhale through the nose and let your diaphragm deflate. Try to do 6 to 8 slow breaths per minute for 10 to 15 minutes each day to achieve quick results.

When to do it:

Like the other breathing techniques, this one can be practiced anytime and anywhere you feel comfortable doing it. But it is beneficial to practice it right before a big event where you might get stressed.

Video Credit – Be The Change Yoga

Breathing Exercises for Intermediate Practitioners:

The following two breathing techniques are perfect for people who have either become used to the beginner techniques or want to find something more advanced:

1. Alternate Nostril Breathing also called as “Nadi Shodhana”

Alternating the inhalation and exhalation between the two nostrils, Nadi Shodhana is practiced by people to achieve purification through an even flow or channel of breathing.

How to do it:

Start by sitting in a comfortable pose, hold your right nostril with the thumb of your right hand and take a deep breath through the left nostril. When you reach your peak of inhalation, close the left nostril with the ring finger of your right hand, holding your breath for 1-2 seconds; then remove the thumb and exhale through the right nostril. Repeat the pattern, this time inhaling through the right nostril and exhaling through the left one.

When to do it:

Whenever you feel the need to focus or feel more awake and to release some tension from your body, that is the right time to practice this technique. It will clear your airflow and increase the oxygen supply to your lungs.

Video Credit  – Yoga With Adriene

2. Guided Visualization Technique

Imagining a happy place and picturing yourself in a space of utmost relaxation, in this way you can use your breathing to guide your brain to let go of anxiety and stress.

How to do it:

Heading straight to your happy place, with the help of a coach or recording as your guide, try to shut your mind off and focus on the pleasant and positive image in front of you. While you transport your thoughts to a more positive environment, take deep and slow breaths through your nose and connect your mind to your body.

When to do it:

You can pretty much do this exercise anywhere and anytime you are comfortable and can safely close your eyes.

Video Credit – Relaxforawhile

Breathing Exercises for Advanced Practitioners:

For the practitioners who have gone through the motions of the first two levels, this technique is the most advanced form of breathing exercise.

Skull Shining Technique, also called as “Kapalbhati”

The word Kapalbhati is a combination of two Sanskrit words which translates to mean lighting or shining the skull. Meaning that this advanced form of yogic breathing is practiced to not only reduce blood pressure but also to invigorate and rejuvenate your mind and body.

How to do it:

The practice of this technique starts with a long, slow and deep inhale through the nose; followed by a quick and powerful exhale through the nose, generated from your lower belly. Start slow and get your body comfortable with the contraction, then increase the pace to 1 exhale-inhale every one to two seconds, for 10 breaths in total.

When to do it:

Frequently compared by veteran yogis to a shot of espresso, the best time to practice this technique is right after you wake up. Or you can practice it when you are feeling tired and tensed. A word of caution for this technique is that you should practice only if you have been practicing the exercises from the preceding levels. Once you are comfortable with the others and have seen some results, you can advance to start practicing the Kapalbhati technique.

Video Credit – Shemaroo

Bonus Advice

In order to lower your blood pressure naturally and achieve quick results by practicing the techniques mentioned above, you need to keep some important points in mind, which include:

  • Don’t try too hard. If you are uncomfortable at any point, take a step back.
  • Choose a place and pose where you feel comfortable. The idea is to let go of stress, not adding more.
  • Make it a routine. You can only see results when you practice the exercises regularly. Try to get 15-20 minutes of practice every day.

While stress, tension, and frustration are a part of life and will always be there. The good news is, so will your ability to control your breath. With these considerations in mind and practicing one of these exercises, you can achieve your goal of lowering your blood pressure naturally.

I would also recommend watching a video by my friend -Christian Goodman, explaining simple blood pressure exercises, proven to help lower your blood pressure below 120/80 – starting today…

Top Foods and Supplements for Reversing High Blood Pressure [Video]

Today I will be sharing with you, supplements and foods for treating high blood pressure. Blood pressure can be easily balanced out if you follow the steps mentioned below. High blood pressure is usually caused by excess consumption of sodium, everyday stress, poor nutrition and lack of exercise.

There are three particular nutrients you want to get in your food if you have high blood pressure:
1. Potassium
2. Antioxidants
3. Omega-3 fatty acids
4. Magnesium
Foods you should avoid :
1. Excess of sodium
2. Processed sugar
The best supplements to naturally treat high blood pressure:
1. Fish oil
2. Coenzyme Q 10
3. Magnesium
4. Garlic
Essential oils to use are:
1. Lavender essential oil
Lastly, a person suffering from high blood pressure should exercise 20-30 minutes, three times per week. By following these suggestions, you will be on the right path to naturally lower your blood pressure. For more information on blood pressure, you can check out the following video by Dr. Josh Axe.

The Grape Truth: Is Red Wine Beneficial For Your Heart?

The talk about red wine being good for your heart has been going about amongst wine enthusiasts for a few years. There is a high possibility that you might hear someone top off their glass with more wine while saying, “don’t worry, it’s good for my heart anyway!”

It is true that red wine may contain antioxidants and other compounds which might do wonders for your mood and lower your stress. There are studies that suggest that red wine, in moderate quantities, may be beneficial for your coronary artery health, but the link is still not understood and confirmed.

So how did the theory that red wine is good for the heart, get its hype? When you ask this question to a supporter of the theory, they will point out the French Paradox to you.

The French Paradox

The French paradox, a term coined during the 1980s, refers to the perception that red wine consumption may explain why the French population has lower rates of heart disease, despite their daily intake of a rich, fatty diet.

The theory gave scientists and researchers a spur to dig deeper and find if this could be true. Multiple studies led to the discovery of polyphenols, which are plant compounds. Found in red and purple grapes, and as well as other vegetables and fruits, these compounds are beneficial for cardiovascular health. More specifically, a polyphenol called Resveratrol was found in red wine, which is advertised as being an anti-aging compound which also prevents heart diseases.

Research in mice showed that Resveratrol might have compelling benefits for the heart, but there is still no evidence of it having the same benefits for humans. In fact, if humans wanted to recreate the beneficial effects of Resveratrol from red wine, they would have to consume around thousand glasses each day. Further, a study in Italy of adults whose diets were already rich in Resveratrol showed no significant link between it and heart disease rates.

So where does this leave the initial theory of red wine being good for health?

Studies and Observations

Well, according to these studies and more, there is no strong evidence that proves the theory and suggests consumption of red wine. Cardiologists and researchers have made the arguments that the studies which show that people, who consume moderate amounts of red wine, have lower rates of heart disease are merely observational. According to them, these studies are only able to explain an association between the two, but no real evidence of cause and effect.

According to an article in the Circulation journal, there are even some studies which do not suggest that wine may be beneficial for your heart health than other type liquors and beer. If this were true, then Japanese people would have higher rates of cardiovascular disease. But the reality is on the contrary; heart disease rates in the Japanese population are even lower than of the French, yet they consume high amounts of beer, sake and other hard spirits.

According to the inclusive results of various studies, the French paradox does not seem to be so paradoxical. Experts now believe that lifestyle habits and healthy dietary routines may explain good heart health better than red wine consumption. Another factor that berates the French paradox is a possible underreporting of cardiovascular diseases by the French doctors.

What is the Grape Truth?

The conclusion of the comparative studies and a long-held discussion among cardiologists turns out to be indecisive. With no cogent evidence supporting the theory of red wine is beneficial for heart diseases, it remains baseless.

Regardless, wine is a milder alcoholic beverage and more suitable than other hard liquors, but that does not mean it should be consumed in large quantities. There is a fine line between drinking wine as a healthy habit and overdoing it. Overindulgence can actually be harmful to your body, affecting your liver, brain, heart and immune system. Cardiologists suggest a measured amount of wine consumption i.e. about 5 ounces per day or less along with a healthy diet.

Vegetarian and Mediterranean Diets: Both Equally Beneficial for Cardiovascular Health

Diet and nutrition have been long proven to be an important factor that changes the condition of cardiovascular health. Different kinds of diets require consumption of various foods that alter the health of your body. For a long time, the Mediterranean diets have been hailed as the healthiest eating style for the prevention of cardiovascular diseases. The diet requires regular consumption of fresh produce, nuts, olive oil, whole grains and lean meat. While cutting down on the use of fatty red meat, sugars, and processed foods. The elimination of processed food makes the diet automatically a better way of life for the people suffering from heart conditions.

However, a new study published in the Circulation journal concluded in showing that a vegetarian or more specifically, a Lacto-Ovo vegetarian diet, to be equally as beneficial for maintaining cardiovascular health as a Mediterranean diet.

The study was conducted by four Italian researchers from University of Florence and Careggi University Hospital, to observe how both diets compare to each other in terms of influencing heart health. The researchers recruited 118 clinically healthy adults between the ages of 18-75, with low-to-moderate cardiovascular risk profiles.

Half of the group was directed to follow a traditional Mediterranean diet, while the other half started a Lacto-ovo vegetarian diet, which required the elimination of all kinds of meat and fish, but included dairy and eggs. Each group followed the diet for three months.

The study was a cross-over comparison study, which meant that the participants switched to the other diets for another 3 months after the following the first one. During the study participants were regularly counseled and advised on the diets they were following.

This included detailed meal plans and a list of foods to include and exclude. During both phases of the study, the participants were screened regularly. For both diets, the researchers advised participants to consume 50-55 percent of their calories from carbohydrates, 20-30 percent from fats and 15-20 percent from lean protein.

The findings of the study showed that participants on both diets had lost 4 pounds overall. Also, both the diets were capable of significantly improving the overall cardiovascular health of the participants.

The results of the study are not as shocking because both diets overlapped in many areas, requiring consumption of the same food groups. Both diets allowed the consumption of dairy, eggs, whole grains, produce and nuts; only eliminating meat and fish products.

The vegetarian diet was observed to be significantly more effective in reducing the low-density lipoprotein (LDL) i.e. the bad cholesterol that accelerates plaque buildup in arteries. The Mediterranean diet however reduced triglycerides that increase the risk of heart attack and stroke.

The researchers concluded the study with a statement from Professor Francesco Sofi (M.D., Ph.D.) who said that “the take-home message from our study is that a low-calorie Lacto-ovo vegetarian diet can help reduce cardiovascular risk about the same as a low-calorie Mediterranean diet.”

The team of the researchers suggests that, even though the study has provided persuasive evidence regarding dietary patterns and cardiovascular health, there is a need for more studies. These studies should study and compare how these two diets affect the cardiovascular risk in patients with a higher heart disease. This would help physicians in the future to better guide their patients about maintaining a healthy lifestyle that benefits their cardiovascular health.

Cardiovascular Diseases in Young Women

Cardiovascular diseases or in the common mans’ language, heart diseases are commonly associated with older people. But according to cardiologists, young people suffer from heart diseases more than people realize. More specifically heart problems were associated with older men more than women. But a study in 1984 determined that women suffered and died because of cardiovascular problems more often than men.

To spread more awareness, on February 3rd women all around America don red apparel to commemorate the National Wear Red Day. The American Heart Association has marked this day to raise awareness for the diseases which claim the lives of 500,000 women each year around the world. Cardiovascular diseases are still to this day, the number one cause of death in women of all ages. Although older women are more likely to develop a heart attack, 15,000 young women under the age of 50 die from them.

Many young women, who believe in the misconception stated above, tend to ignore the right actions which help prevent heart diseases. Although there is much more awareness now because of survivors, like Rosie O’Donnell, speaking up about their experiences many young women still remain unaware. This becomes a problem when this unawareness leads to them ignoring signs of heart diseases.

According to a survey done by cardiologists at the American Heart Association, women tend to be unaware of the symptoms when they are having a heart attack and ignore it thinking it might be indigestion or heartburn. This may be due to the fact that many women experience different symptoms than men. If you are unaware and seem to experience any of the following symptoms then you might need a heart specialist immediately:

· Pain in Shoulder or Neck

Like many others who experience excruciating pain in their chest, young women especially with no prior health conditions experience pain in the neck, left arm and shoulder rather than the chest. Few women who suffered reported that they did not even experience extreme pain, instead they experience only discomfort. In the case of extreme discomfort get immediate attention from a heart specialist.

· Shortness of Breath

While shortness of breath might be associated with being winded, intense shortness of breath might be an indicator of an incoming heart attack. An extreme shortness of breath indicates a heart issue when it is accompanied with chest pains. Get a cardiologist to investigate if you are experiencing this symptom.

· Fatigue

Although a little bit of fatigue after a long day is very normal, extended experiences of fatigue can be a sign of the insufficient amount of oxygen on your blood, which is an indicator of a heart disease.

· Racing Heartbeat

A racing heartbeat is normal after rigorous exercise which eventually subsides in a few minutes. In younger women especially a fast heartbeat without any heavy exercise is abnormal and shouldn’t be ignored.

Indigestion, dizziness, nausea and constant sweating might also be indicators of an underlying heart condition needing urgent attention. And if any of the symptoms go ignored, it may lead to a more complicated problem.

As per the saying, prevention is the cure, taking precaution is a smarter way to save you from any bigger issues later on in life. Especially when routines are more hectic and there is more stress, a yearly checkup with a cardiologist very important. Whether or not you are experiencing one or more symptoms, getting a full work up from a heart expert will rule out any possible heart disease and save you any distress later.

Insufficient Sleep Makes an Unhealthy Heart

Insufficient sleep can leave you feeling grumpy and agitated and will ruin your mood for the rest of the day.

Over a longer period of time, sleep deprivation can lead to serious health issues like obesity, diabetes, slower metabolism and inflammation.

A prolonged lack of sleep acts as a catalyst in disrupting basic health conditions which has detrimental effects on your health.

Shortage of sleep in the long run can shorten life expectancy too. Studies show that people who get a good night’s sleep live longer than those who don’t.

This further strengthens the argument in favor of getting the required amount of sleep every day.

In fact, physicians might even just recommend a good nights’ sleep to resolve and prevent possible health issues.

Optimal Sleep

According to a study by Harvard Med, the optimal sleep required differs for everyone, depending on their age and genetics. But on an average 6-8 hours of sleep in a day are optimal for the body to function at its best. Less than 6 hours of sleep increases the risk of heart disease.

When the body is resting, different enzymes and chemicals are activated, which calm it down from the intense activity that it undertook throughout the day. During this rest, the blood pressure and heart rate drop, and the body start rejuvenating.

Insufficient Sleep and Your Heart

Less than 6 hours of sleep prevents the heart rate from dropping and keeps it elevated for a prolonged period. This lack of variability means the hearts’ work remains the same, causing hypertension.

The further validation comes from studies about sleep apnea. It’s a condition which causes troubled breathing which wakes people frequently and disrupts their sleep cycle, causing sleep deprivation and fatigue.

According to the American Heart Association, sleep apnea is a contributor to increased risk of elevated blood pressure, arrhythmia, stroke and congestive heart failure.

Lack of sleep also disrupts metabolism, creating an imbalance in blood sugar levels, in turn, heightening the risk for diabetes. Shorter sleep cycles hinder the production of hormones which function to decrease appetite, triggering an increased consumption of calories. This increases the chance of high cholesterol and obesity which are known causes of multiple heart diseases.

How Can You Sleep Better?

According to the CDC (Centre for Disease Control and Prevention), 1 in 3 adults suffer from sleep deprivation; leading cause being a more hectic and busy lifestyle.

There are many ways which can help in getting a good night’s sleep, and some of them are;

  1. Exercise This tires out the body, improves the chemical balances and allows for more restful sleep.
  2. Lower the intake of alcohol and caffeine-laden beverages in the evening.
  3. Avoid a heavy, rich meal right before you go to sleep.
  4. And establish a fixed routine right before you sleep to trigger easy sleeping in future.

The most important tip is to get checked by a physician to make sure you have no underlying conditions that are causing the improper sleep cycle.

Not having sufficient sleep and rest in one day can have an adverse impact on not only the heart but overall physical and mental health. Recognizing and solving issues regarding your sleep early can save you distress later.