A recent study showed that dietary changes can have as profound an effect on cardiovascular risk as statin drug therapy. But making diet and lifestyle changes can be very difficult for many at-risk people. Holistic Primary Care's physician readers share their experiences and recommendations for helping people shift to healthier lifestyles.
There are many different techniques and exercises for reducing stress and shifting heart rate variability from jagged, low amplitude, high-risk patterns to coherent, healthful, high-amplitude forms. Here are two specific techniques from the HeartMath program.
Heart rate variability (HRV), the beat-to-beat change in heart rate, can tell you a lot about your cardiovascular health. People with smooth, coherent, high-amplitude HRV patterns have much lower risk than those with jagged, incoherent, low amplitude patterns. HRV monitoring is inexpensive, and best of all, people can learn how to shift HRV from unhealthy to healthy patterns with a few simple meditation exercises.
Conventional medicine is nearly obsessive about cholesterol and other lipids, but chronic inflammation plays just as big a role in the development of heart disease. A number of natural products and non-pharmacologic interventions can help reduce chronic inflammation and improve heart health.
There is strong evidence that depressed people have greater risk of heart disease and worse outcomes from heart attacks. Ever wonder how a "psychological" disorder like depression can have such direct physical effects? Interleukin-6, an inflammatory signaling molecule, is pointing to some interesting answers.
A good multivitamin and some modest lifestyle changes can markedly reduce C-reactive protein, a marker of inflammation that correlates strongly with risk of heart attacks, according to a study by physicians at Dallas
Elevated levels of asymmetric dimethyl arginine (ADMA) is emerging as a serious risk factor for cardiovascular disease, one for which physicians should routinely test. Fortunately, the problem can be reversed by supplementation with L-arginine.
A bioactive peptide found in cow's milk has ACE-inhibitory effects, and holds promise as a natural therapy for lowering blood pressure in people with early-stage hypertension.
Vitamin D deficiency correlates strongly with many heart disease risk factors. A new study from Germany shows that vitamin D supplementation produces beneficial anti-inflammatory changes in patients with congestive heart failure (CHF).
White Adipose Tissue (WAT), the raw material of love handles, secretes a wide range of signaling substances that can radically change metabolism. Dr. Jay Udani reviews the new science emerging on this topic, and explains why it becomes progressively more difficult for obese people to lose weight, even when they try very hard.