Heart disease is a set of conditions that affect the heart, including blood vessel diseases, like coronary artery disease; heart rhythm problems (arrhythmias); and heart defects one is born with.
It is the number one cause of death in the United States, and even though the number of deaths from it was lowered in the last thirty years, it is again on the rise.
The recent AHA report showed that by 2035, more than 123 million Americans will suffer from elevated blood pressure, 24 million will develop coronary heart disease, and over 11 million will have experienced a stroke.
These predictions are shocking, and should serve as a warning that we should all inform more and do all necessary to lower our risk of developing heart disease.
A renowned heart surgeon with 25 years experience, who has performed more than 5,000 open-heart surgeries, shared his findings of heart diseases. Apparently, even though it was a generally accepted fact that this disease is a result of high blood cholesterol, it is actually not the case.
He claims that there is a need of a change in the accepted therapy of heart disease that involves medications to lower cholesterol and a diet that restricts fat intake since it was recently discovered that heart diseases are a result of the inflammation in the artery wall.
Facts show that even though patients take statin medications and severely reduce the fat intake, they still die of heart disease, even more than ever before.
Unless there is an inflammation in the body, there are no chances of accumulation of cholesterol in the walls of blood vessels, that would lead to strokes and heart disease.
Dr. Regina Druz, a cardiologist at the Integrative Cardiology Center of Long Island, agrees:
“The epidemic is related to several factors, all converging in what amounts to a ‘perfect storm’ situation. However, what fuels the rise of diabetes and obesity, and heart disease down the line, is inflammation, and the impact of inflammation and environment on our genetics.”
Inflammation is the body mechanism to combat foreign invaders like bacteria, toxins or viruses. Yet, if the body is chronically exposed to toxins, they will develop chronic inflammation.
The main culprit is the mainstream diet, that is high in polyunsaturated fats(omega-6 vegetable oils like soybean, corn, and sunflower) and highly-processed carbohydrates(sugar, flour and all the products made from them) and low in fat, that injures the blood vessels, and leads to chronic inflammation, and diseases.
Therefore, foods high in sugars and simple carbohydrates, or processed with omega-6 oils actually poison our bodies.
Their consumption triggers the insulin release in the pancreas, and when cells do not need it, the blood sugar levels increase and the glucose converts to stored fat. The repeated injury to the blood vessels then develops inflammation.
This surgeon explains:
“Regardless of where the inflammatory process occurs, externally or internally, it is the same. I have peered inside thousands upon thousands of arteries.
A diseased artery looks as if someone took a brush and scrubbed repeatedly against its wall. Several times a day, every day, the foods we eat create small injuries compounding more injuries, causing the body to respond continuously and appropriately with inflammation.”
Moreover, in the case of an excessive consumption of omega-6 oils, and an imbalance with omega-3’s, the cell membrane produces chemicals known as cytokines that directly lead to inflammation. This imbalance can go as high as 30:1 in favor of omega-6 due to the modern diets we consume.
Moreover, the extra pounds due to such an unhealthy diet overload fat cells that provide large quantities of pro-inflammatory chemicals that add to the injury due to the increased blood sugar.
The more we consume such processed foods, the higher our risk is to develop some chronic disease due to inflammation in the body. Our bodies are not designed to process such foods too high in sugar and omega-6 oils.
The solution is to focus on natural foods, rich in protein, and complex carbs, such as colorful fruits and vegetables. Reduce the intake of inflammation- causing omega-6 fats such as corn and soybean oil, and completely avoid all kinds of processed foods.
Use olive oil or butter from grass-fed beef instead of corn or soybean oil. It has been now shown that the belief that saturated fat alone can be the reason for heart disease is false.
Apparently, the switch to foods rich in omega-3 fats led to an epidemic of arterial inflammation, that is the real cause of silent killers, such as heart disease.
As Dr. Dwight Lundell recommends:
“Choose whole foods your grandmother served and not those your mom turned to as grocery store aisles filled with manufactured foods. By eliminating inflammatory foods and adding essential nutrients from fresh unprocessed food, you will reverse years of damage in your arteries and throughout your body from consuming the typical American diet.”
Here are some additional tips to help you prevent heart disease and improve your cardiovascular health:
- Quit smoking
- Consume a healthy diet
- Avoid all kinds of processed foods
- Limit the intake of carbs and sugar
- Make sure your snacks are healthy
- Control other health conditions, like high blood pressure, high cholesterol, and diabetes
- Exercise at least 30 minutes a day several times a week
- Regularly detoxify your body
- Maintain a healthy weight
- Reduce and manage stress
- Practice good hygiene
- Know your risks by thoroughly examining your health
- Learn the warning signs
- Stay informed, as new insights and medical methods develop every day