Heart disease is the number one killer of Australians and about 90% of cardiovascular (CV) conditions are caused by diet and lifestyle factors such as obesity, toxicity, stress, poor diet and a sedentary lifestyle.
Given this, there is a lot that we can do, that is within our power to help support healthy CV function and prevent CV disease.
Other factors affecting CV disease, which affects the heart and blood vessels (veins & arteries), include inflammation, infections, nutritional deficiencies, genetic risk factors, toxicity, oxidative stress, and endothelial dysfunction (issues with the quality of the tissue lining the blood vessels and heart). In addition to diet and lifestyle alterations, these are some of the contributing factors I focus on correcting with patients presenting with CV disease to help improve long term outcomes.
Traditional treatment focuses on treating the symptoms of CV disease such as high blood pressure and high cholesterol, which is important, however for long term results you must also treat the underlying causes of these symptoms. For example, is your blood pressure high because you are overweight, stressed, eating too much salt, have high cholesterol?
Stress is a major risk factor for CV disease, and lets face it, you would be hard pressed to find someone who isn’t affected by stress these days. Studies have found that “stress management can cause reductions in the reoccurrence of cardiac incidents for patients with cardiovascular disease. Participants who received combined rehabilitation and stress management demonstrated reductions in anxiety and stress scores, as well as lower rates of cardiovascular events compared to those in the control group and those who received cardiac rehabilitation only”.
As a Natural Medicine practitioner I use therapeutic grade natural supplements such as CoQ10, magnesium, vitamin C, B12 and folate to support CV health. In addition, nature has given us an array of herbs that help to tone, repair and protect the cardiovascular system, such as hawthorn, motherwort and ginkgo.
If you are experiencing CV disease, or have a family history and wanting to take a preventative approach, come for an appointment to see how we can help support your cardiovascular system.
By Lauren Reid – Naturopathic Medicine Practitioner