Angina

Blockage in the coronary arteries can keep the heart muscle from getting enough oxygen rich blood causing the chest pain known as angina. The pain may also occur in the shoulders, arms, neck, jaw, or back and it can feel like a burning sensation, squeezing or even indigestion. Angina is not a disease but a symptom of an underlying heart condition which if not taken care of can lead to heart attack.

According to Dr. James Pantano in his book “Living with Angina” the word ‘angina’ was first used in 1768 by Dr. William Heberden to mean ‘strangling’ rather than ‘pain’. Back then, angina was not a common condition and it was not even linked to heart disease until the 19th century. It was then that doctors noticed the condition caused a prolonged illness and permanent weakening of the patient. Today angina affects more than 3 million people in the USA alone. Angina was once thought to be an old man’s disease, however, the autopsy of some Korean War soldiers proved it can start in the late teenage years.

What causes angina?

The main cause of angina according to Dr. Pantano is atherosclerosis, which as we saw in previous discussions, causes a thickening of the artery leading to blockage of the normal flow of blood to the heart. This decrease in blood flow is a problem in the beginning stages of angina only while exercising, but in more advanced cases it becomes a problem even while at rest. This process of blockage is not uniform so it is sometimes hard to locate. It can happen on the arteries that travel up the neck to the brain, or on one side of two matched arteries, causing cramping on one leg or even death of the tissue downstream the side of the blockage.

Dr. Pantano explains that it is possible to use the law of physics called ‘fluid dynamics’ to calculate the flow of liquid through a pipe and compare it to the flow of blood in the arteries. According to fluid dynamics, the flow of a liquid will not be impeded until the pipe is 70% blocked. Similarly for an artery, and only under times of stress like exercise, a 75% blockage is the starting point for the typical symptoms of angina to appear.

Dr. Pantano has observed that in most cases coronary plaque is located in the upstream part of the vessel, not the downstream and also the on the major branching points.

Udo Erasmus explains there can be another aspect to angina aside from plaque: consuming “saturated or denaturated fatty acids make our platelets sticky, increasing the risk of clot forming” This is why angina is sometimes linked to indigestion.

Your Heart 101

The heart is an amazing biological system. As the electrical organ that it is, it generates an electrical field 50 times stronger than the brain. According to Dr. Bernard Jensen in his book “Developing a new heart” the heart is built like a 2-story house with four rooms, two upstairs (Left and Right auricles) and 2 downstairs (Left and right ventricles). The heart’s work starts on the right auricle, where old blood enters depleted of oxygen and loaded with carbon dioxide waste. From there, this old blood is forced into the right ventricle below from where it is pumped into the lungs through the pulmonary artery. In the lungs, carbon dioxide is released and the blood is freshly oxygenated. This clean, oxygen rich blood passes into the pulmonary veins and enters the left auricle, then is forced down into the left ventricle below. From there it is pumped into the aorta (the main artery that feeds the whole body). From the aorta, the front and back coronary arteries deliver blood to the heart muscle itself. It is these coronary arteries that develop atherosclerosis that can lead to heart attack.

The normal heart beats 65/75 beats per minute and pumps through 60,000 miles of blood vessels one gallon of blood per minute. No man-made pump could match this efficient machine!

* How the heart beats.

Heartbeats are triggered by an electrical discharge from the sinoatrial node in the upper right heart chamber’s muscle. Around a thousandth of a volt is discharged causing the muscle heart to contract forcing the blood from the ventricle. Heart rate is regulated by the nerves in the brain. Muscular activity, emotional reactions, stress, sleep, etc can raise or lower heartbeat. The sinoatrial node initiates the heart cycle so it is called the heart’s pacemaker. It triggers an electrical impulse that travels over nerve fibers and interacts with a second node, the atrioventricular node located between the upper right and lower right chambers of the heart.

The heart does not depend on the brain or nervous system to get a heart beat because it has its own electrical power plant and starts its own electrically stimulated contractions. It even has its own brain cells.

* The names of the three coronary arteries

  1. The LAD (left anterior descending) coronary artery serves the front wall of the heart and the septum (the dividing wall) between the two ventricles. It is a large and important artery.
  2. The RCA (right coronary artery) goes down the right side of the heart, serves the right ventricle and supplies the bottom wall of the left ventricle.
  3. The Cx (circumflex coronary artery) runs down the left side of the left ventricle serving that area and the back wall as well.

All coronary arteries give blood to the left ventricle, the right ventricle muscle gets its blood from early branches of the RCA.

The right and left ventricles are quite different. The right ventricle receives blood from veins returning from all parts of the body and pumps it to the lungs. The right side ventricle is a low pressure system so it does not require to increase the pressure much to make it through the lungs. Therefore the right ventricle requires only a few small branches from the RCA to supply it with enough nourishment to pump. Angina almost never happens from a blocked artery to the right ventricle.

The left side of the heart is a powerhouse. It must raise the pressure of outgoing blood higher than the blood pressure in the body so it needs to generate pressure that is five to ten times higher than that of the right ventricle. For this to be possible the muscle on the left side is four times thicker than the right ventricle and needs the entire blood supply of the three coronary arteries to supply its demands for fuel. All angina happens in the left ventricle.

The bad news

The slow progressive decrease in blood flow through an artery with buildup produces ischemia, which is what happens when the heart is deprived of oxygen long enough that extra branches grow from close arteries. These new arteries are known as collaterals and can keep tissue alive, but are unsufficient to do the job, especially under times of increased demand. All the arteries in the body are subject to this process.

Angina is usually not painful. It sometimes happens in the chest, jaw, arms, elbow or wrist with no muscular or bone basis. Angina can radiate into the left arm in some cases, upward and outwards. Around 50% of patients feel it in the left arm, 40% in both arms and 10% only have right arm discomfort. It can happen in both chest and arms. It sometimes radiates from the central chest up to the base of the throat and may continue into the jaw, or it can only be on the jaw making the diagnosis very tricky. The trickiest of all occurs in the upper back which can be mistaken for arthritis pain and can make it even harder to diagnose.

Angina is more likely to occur with exertion as the demand for blood increases. Some light exercise might be tolerated as long as it is not done after eating, when digestion is also requiring a draw of blood from the heart to the intestines. According to Udo Erasmus in his book “Fats that heal, Fats that kill” a meal high in fats makes blood thicker and less capable of supplying oxygen.

The amount of blood needed by the heart muscle is determined by how much that side must contract, the greater the contraction, the more blood is required to provide the energy needed for the next heartbeat.

The traditional medical approach for patients with angina is nitroglycerin. It is known to relax the muscles of the arteries causing them to dilate. This is thought to ease the work the heart must do and enable it to get more blood, relieving the symptoms of angina. However, with some people the effectiveness wears off as their condition worsens. Nitroglycerin is quickly absorbed through the skin into the body. This can be a convenience but it can also be a disadvantage since the active ingredients that enable it to pass so easily into the body also degrade or evaporate easily, reducing the effectiveness of the drug. It must also be stored in a small, glass, airtight container and kept cool to stay effective.

Also, people who are on high blood pressure medications should be specially careful, especially with beta-blockers because they can lower the blood pressure to an unsafe level. If the patient is also taking nitroglycerin, his/her blood pressure can drop so quickly that the brain does not get enough blood for a few moments, causing them to collapse. This can be extremely dangerous, especially for someone who is elderly or driving a car.

Another disadvantage of taking this drug, although not so dangerous is headaches.

More than 2 million Americans either have had a heart attack or have angina. Two-thirds of all patients die of the complications and over 200,000 Americans go into coronary artery bypass surgery each year.

The good news

In his book “Left for dead” Mr. Quinn tells the story of how he took control of his own health even after the doctors had given up on him. In his remarkable testimony he details how he had a heart attack with a near death experience, an angiogram, a double coronary by pass, heart failure and an incredible recovery thanks to an herb he discovered by chance which kept him alive despite all the odds. He considers himself an expert on heart disease not because he has a degree in medicine but because he has heart disease. He had severely blocked arteries which doctors said required surgery, after which, his energy, vitality and general health declined rapidly. He would faint often, get dizzy and suddenly lose his energy until one day he had a frightening blind spell that convinced him that despite the doctor’s reassurances, he was dying. That is when he decided to use cayenne to save his heart… and his health took an incredible turn. He wants to share his knowledge with us so that anybody out there who might be going through the same ‘heartache’ can have confidence in their recovery, even after being left for dead.

It all started during his six month check up, and his doctor’s words “What do you expect?…they took your heart out of your chest, stopped it, cut it and sewed on it, you cannot expect it to run right” after which he dropped Mr. Quinn. This caused a firm determination in Mr. Quinn: “I’ll do it myself…I’ll figure it out and take charge because I have to”. He did not know what to do but he remembered one of his dad’s friends who had told him about how cayenne would help him. So he went to the General Store and bought some Cayenne Red Pepper, he filled some capsules himself and took three. The following day he woke up with incredible energy, which he thought was very unusual for him but then he remembered the cayenne he had taken the day before, he ran to his kitchen and took three more capsules. He continued to get better and decided to use this new life to study herbs so he could help other people like him. He learned what thousands of years of human experience already knew: “there are safe ways to clean arteries, strengthen your heart and prevent heart attack”. He studied the work of Dr. John Christopher who on many occasions stopped a heart attack in progress by giving the patient cayenne in warm water.

What follows is a brief summary of his research on many of the herbs he used himself everyday to get his heart healthy again.

Cayenne, the miracle worker

Cayenne has been used medicinally for over 5,000 years. Columbus discovered cayenne along the Cayenne River off the North Coast of South America. The ship’s doctor found it had remarkable healing and desinfecting properties and stopped bleeding instantly. It was also effective against scurvy because of its vitamin C content. Modern researchers have confirmed this medicinal power of cayenne when they found it to be faster than antibiotics in healing surgical wounds. Dr. Christopher tells of a village in Mexico where they eat great amounts of cayenne and villagers were known for their long healthy lives.

Mr. Quinn studied herbs for many years and found out they work best when combined. Herbs synergize when blended, he said, each herb becoming up to 10 times more powerful, complementing one another and making each stronger and more effective. Cayenne is the universal companion herb so it makes every other herb work better. It works best with its facilitator, ginger. Cayenne and garlic also synergize to regulate blood pressure and clean out the arteries. Cayenne and hawthorn synergize to strengthen the heart and give you stamina. Cayenne intensifies the beneficial effects of other herbs by ensuring speedy and thorough distribution of the herbs’ active components to the important functional centers of the body such as those responsible for metabolism, data transmission, cellular respiration and neural hormonal activity.

The key to heart attack prevention is healthy, clean arteries and other circulatory channels. Cayenne and garlic work together cleaning your arteries, lowering blood pressure and preventing heart attack. The arteries have 3 layers, the middle layer is a muscle, it opens and closes depending on stress, and other factors. If there is an obstruction in a coronary artery, a blood clot can shut off the flow causing a heart attack. Cayenne, garlic and ginger can lower the blood protein known as fibrin that causes clotting. This is done by stimulating the fibrinolytic system (which lasts up to 30 minutes after ingestion of the herbs), which prevents blood clots from forming and dissolves the clots that had already formed. Dissolving the clot opens the artery and stimulates the heart, stopping a heart attack. It does this without raising heart beat or blood pressure. By doing this cayenne allows the body to get the circulation it needs without straining the heart. Improved circulation is the key to better health in many ways: digestion, elimination, energy, sex, attitude, complexion, respiration, sleep, ambition, stamina, eyesight, ulcers and headaches. Cayenne improves circulation all over the body.

Hardening of the arteries is caused by deposits that build up in the inside wall of the artery and prevent it from opening and closing. Garlic can penetrate these hardened deposits softening them so they can be washed away by the soapy vitamin A in cayenne.

Cayenne also heals the sores on your artery walls. Since there are thousands of miles of arteries, veins, capillaries and arterials, all of which must be kept clean, this makes cayenne of key important for the health of our arteries. Surgery, on the contrary, only targets a tiny part of this system.

When we eat cayenne, nerve endings secrete Substance P, which alerts the brain to pain. In response to this, other nerve cells secrete endorphins, the body’s pain killers, which act like morphine to stop the pain and convey a sense of well being.

Cayenne detoxifies the liver and other organs. This can cause some reaction for up to three days which is a sign that your organs are detoxifying poisons.

Cayenne is one of the most effective stimulants for every system and cell of the body, digestive system and the circulatory system. It regulates blood pressure, strengthens the pulse, feeds the heart, lowers cholesterol, thins the blood, cleanses the circulatory system, heals ulcers, stops hemorrhaging, speeds healing of wounds, rebuilds damaged tissue, eases congestion, aids digestion, regulates elimination, relieves arthritis and rheumatism, prevents the spread of infection and numbs pain. It has been evaluated around the world for its uses as a stimulant, astringent, antispasmodic, circulatory tonic, antidepressant and antibacterial. Also, it acts as a diaphoretic to induce sweating, a rubefacient to increase circulation at the skin’s surface. It aids digestion and soothes intestinal ailments by stimulating the stomach to produce mucous.

In the circulatory system, cayenne helps the arteries, veins and capillaries regain the elasticity of youth by feeding the cell structure. Cayenne helps equalize circulation by regulating the flow of blood from the head to the feet. Cayenne strengthens the pulse by increasing the power, not the frequency. Generally, cayenne boosts overall health of the entire cardiovascular system. Cayenne gets the blood moving, boots energy and eases stress, helps concentration and is anti-fatigue. By increasing the circulation of the blood to peripheral tissues through the body, cayenne helps deliver needed nutrients to inflamed and infected areas. Studies show that nutrients in food ingested with cayenne are assimilated faster and more easily.

Vitamins, minerals and other compounds in herbs work together. Cayenne helps circulation by opening the arteries and cleansing the circulatory system. It accomplishes this with five different types of capsaicin and vitamin A, that washes away plaque and cholesterol, heals lesions and ulcers and restores arterial flexibility. Cayenne contains many other nutrients essential for health of the circulatory system including alpha-tocopherols, vitamin C and minerals. Cayenne is also high in minerals including sulphur, iron, calcium, magnesium, phosphorus. Thus, it is good for diabetes, arthritis, pancreatic and throat disorders.

Cayenne together with a high protein intake can lower cholesterol by excreting it from the body and preventing its absorption in the body.

Added to garlic, cayenne speeds its antibiotic action, so much that is like taking liquin penicillin. Together they can lower blood pressure. Added to ginger, cayenne helps clean out the bronchial tubes.

Garlic

Garlic was first recognized for its antibacterial properties in a study by Louis Pasteur in 1858. Since that time, the antibacterial action of garlic has proven effective against forms of staph, strep, salmonella, etc. Garlic is so effective as an antibiotic that one milligram of allicin (its major component) is about equal to 15 standard units of penicillin. Garlic was able to exterminate 72 separate infectious agents. It is also antifungal, antiviral and antiparasitic. It works both internally and externally on infections. It benefits the immune, digestive, respiratory, urinary and circulatory systems. Traditionally garlic has been used for the treatment of colds, bronchitis, asthma, pneumonia, typhoid, tuberculosis, earache, sore throat, headache, stomach ache, cramps, diarrhea, dysentery, cholera worms, ulcers, high blood pressure, low blood pressure, hypertension, snakebite, gout, skin diseases and rheumatism. Modern medicine and science have validated all of these properties.

By the end of the 19th century doctors in Europe and America used garlic to treat tuberculosis and during WWI garlic was used to fight typhus and dysentery and disinfect battle wounds. It has been used successfully to treat cryptococcal meningitis, and influenza viruses. Garlic can target infections anywhere in the body because its oils are readily and transported through the body, it is absorbed so easily that garlic oil or juice applied to the soles of the feet will pass through the body to the lungs so fast it can be detected on the breath within seconds of exposure. Garlic is very effective against problems in the urinary tract, digestive system and the circulatory system. It stimulates the cleansing and purging action of the kidneys. It aids digestion by inciting the production of bile.

Respiratory ailments such as asthma respond to garlic because it is both a decongestant and an expectorant, keeping mucus moving normally through the lungs. It can be used for colds, flu and fevers. An oil can be made with garlic and dropped into the ear to treat an earache and rubbed directly on sprains and minor skin disorders.

Garlic lowers cholesterol, blood lipids and blood pressure by expanding vessel walls increasing blood flow, and helps prevent blockage by inhibiting the tendency of the blood cells to stick together and form clots. It also kills cancer cells.

Garlic contains high levels of protein, vitamin A, vitamin C, thiamine and trace minerals such as iron, zinc, copper, calcium, tin, potassium, selenium, aluminum, sulfur and germanium.

Ginger

Ginger has been used for over 2,000 years in Chinese medicine for digestive disorders, nausea, fever, coughing, diarrhea, rheumatism, and lumbago. Studies show it can prevent motion sickness, it thins the blood, lowers cholesterol and forestalls the flu. It is effective in the treatment of digestive and circulatory disorders. The volatile oils in ginger also stimulate the circulatory and respiratory systems, lower cholesterol, deter blood clots and purify the blood. Ginger boots metabolism by increasing the function of the circulatory and respiratory system aiding the body’s recovery from the negative effects of stress and fatigue. Ginger relieves pain, lowers blood pressure and stimulates the heart.

Hawthorn

Hawthorn is another remarkable herb. The benefits of hawthorn came to the attention of the American medical establishment by the end of the 1800’s. Doctors lauded the plant’s effectiveness and lack of side effects. Hawthorn they said was more effective than digitalis and strophanthin for handling chronic cardiac illness.

Mr. Quinn would take hawthorn everyday to prevent angina, which he said worked better than nitroglycerine. Hawthorn improves coronary circulation by dilating the coronary arteries to bring more oxygen directly to the heart muscle and reducing the chances of heart attack or angina. Simply put, Hawthorn helps keep the heart healthy enough to head off a heart attack. For patients who have already suffered a heart attack studies show Hawthorn speeds recovery, lowers blood pressure strengthens the heart and forestalls any onset of coronary disease. After a heart attack the capillaries are broken and the heart muscle is deprived of blood and atrophies or dies. Hawthorn studies show it re-opens damaged capillaries and restores circulation to resuscitate damaged muscle, so the heart can recover. No other herb in the plant kingdom provides the nourishing and regeneration of hawthorn both before or after a heart attack.

Used in conjunction with a healthy diet and stress management, hawthorn is the perfect preventive prescription for people who have a family history of heart disease. Considered a safe and effective long term treatment for the gradual loss of heart function that comes with age. It increases the ability of the heart to function smoothly, hawthorn imparts a gentle but persistent toning action.

Hawthorn is used by European doctors to treat and prevent angina, lower cholesterol and blood pressure, correct cardiac insufficiency and restore lost heart function.

Hawthorn prevents the hardening of the arteries, treats atherosclerosis and cools inflammation of the heart muscle. Used regularly, hawthorn strengthens the heart muscle and the nerves to the heart. Hawthorne is not habit forming, accumulative or toxic.

Last but not least, hawthorn is lauded as a gentle sedative to calm the nerves and ease insomnia.

To sum up, we have seen how angina can be a debilitating and progressive condition that can lead to more serious problems. The good news is that there are wonderful herbs that can actually took care of the progression of this condition. The Heart and Body Extract contains all the herbs we have mentioned before plus many others that work together to reverse many heart conditions.

Heart disease in women

According to the American Heart Association, heart disease is the no. 1 killer of women, “kills more women than all forms of cancer combined, and more women than men”. Similarly, on an article published in the Journal of Women’s Health, it is stated that female cardiovascular disease mortality rate remains ‘disproportionately high and the root causes underlying this inequity remain speculative”. What can women do to turn this around? Fortunately, there are many things that women can do, please keep reading to find out.

To start our discussion, I would like to mention the work of Dr. Stephen Sinatra, M.D. who has specialized in preventive cardiology for more that 30 years. In his book “Reverse Heart Disease Now” he talks about a pattern he has observed through his career: “women have always received less treatment, and are more likely to be written off by physicians as having anxiety or psychological issues… because her symptoms are often less definite or dramatic than those of men, her doctor may underestimate them or fail to order follow-up tests… While in men symptoms might be arm or chest pain, for a woman the symptoms might include discomfort in the chest that mimics indigestion, or it might be pain in the neck that radiates into the jaw or profound fatigue. Many women even will write off their symptoms as the flu” He explains that even after many years as cardiologist and being aware of the unusual symptoms displayed by many women, he still finds that heart disease in women can be confusing and women may more often experience non classic symptoms of a stroke than men. So what can women do to prevent this? I think the answer is to stay informed and know their body. We need to remember that our health is our responsibility, it is not our doctor’s responsibility, even though there might be wonderful doctors out there who really care for us.

In what follows, we will discuss what I believe could be the contributing factors that make heart disease in women more prevalent than in men. Some of them might be so obvious that they can be easily overlooked. These contributing factors are: pregnancy, excess estrogen and menopause.

Pregnancy as a risk factor

Pregnancy is a very stressful time in a woman’s life. Aside from all the changes the body has to go through, the mother has to provide all the nutrition the baby needs to develop correctly. That means that if the mother is not healthy enough and the baby is going to take everything it needs from her body, this can leave her vulnerable and nutritionally deficient. To explain what I mean, I would like to quote Dr. Joel Wallach in his book “Epigenetics” where he states: “Life does not begin at conception, it begins in the 23 chromosomes of the father and the 23 chromosomes of the mother … it is imperative for the DNA to constantly have access to all 90 essential nutrients (60 minerals, 16 vitamins, 12 amino acids and 3 fatty acids) and each one must be available in optimal amounts and in the proper ratios to each other” Under ideal circumstances, the mother will be healthy enough to provide for herself and her baby the nutrition needed, but in today’s world that is almost impossible.

I believe most of us do not get the essential nutrients our body needs in normal circumstances, much less under extraordinary circumstances like is the case of pregnancy. Unless the mother supplements before, during and after pregnancy, she can run into high risks of nutritional deficiencies that could affect her heart health later in life. This is topic that I believe does not get enough attention, one proof of this is that cravings during pregnancy are still considered ‘normal’ but are a clear sign of nutritional deficiencies. Something else that is alarming is the fact that the mother’s brain shrinks during pregnancy if she does not eat enough essential fatty acids.

Another risk factor that I think is significant in women in their child bearing years is that they lose important minerals during their monthly cycle. An example is magnesium, which is essential for heart health and if not replenished can compromise her health. If you find yourself craving chocolate or have restless leg syndrome, it might be a sign that you are deficient in magnesium. 1000-2000 mg of magnesium glycinate, with calcium and vitamin K2, before going to sleep will not only take care of this but will also relax you.

The heart of the matter

The second risk factor in heart disease in women is one that might not seem to be related and can be easily overlooked. What I am referring to is estrogen. Estrogen is a stress hormone both men and women make from cholesterol, but women have more of this inflammatory hormone than men do. Estrogen is obviously important and has functions in the body, it regulates many chemical reactions and supports the body in times of stress. But there is a negative side to it that needs to be addressed. According to pharmacist Ben Fuchs, estrogen is a very potent hormone that is active in very small amounts, this is significant because it means that estrogen has to be broken down, processed correctly and eliminated from the body through the gallbladder, liver, digestive system and via the activity of probiotics. According to him, a toxic overload of estrogen is the reason why women have more heart disease than men. This means that if we have any digestive disorder, liver or gallbladder health issues, or the wrong kind of bacteria in the gut, this toxic estrogen will build up in the body and create havoc.
Let us see how excess estrogen can become a health issue:

  1. Estrogen reduces the tone and strength of blood vessels, thickens and clots the blood. Women on HRT (Hormone Replacement Therapy) have higher rates of blood clots. A study published in Medical Care (May 2009) examined the relationship between HRT use and heart failures in the entire US population.The results established that “Decreased HRT use was associated with a decrease in the incidence of acute myocardial infarction [heart attack]”
  2. Estrogen increases the risk for cancer, specially endiomitrial cancer, ovarian and breast cancer.
  3. Estrogen turns on the growth of breast tissue (this means cysts, fibroids and even tumors).
  4. Estrogen increases the chance of auto-immune diseases and adds an additional burden to the stress response. (Estrogen is pro-anxiety).
  5. Estrogen stimulates contractions and spasms.
  6. Estrogen opposes the action of insulin, making it harder to control blood sugar levels. This means that the higher the estrogen levels, the higher the insulin levels will be. This translates into a higher risk for diabetes, insulin resistance, elevations of blood insulin all of which can precede other health problems like cancer and heart disease.
  7. Excess estrogen excretes zinc from the body and causes accumulation of copper. Zinc is needed for many chemical reactions in the body including sugar metabolism, growth and repair, hormonal balance, immune system, slowing down the aging process (wrinkles, dark spots, osteoporosis, etc.)
  8. Estrogen will “restrain the breakdown of bone tissue” according to Dr. John Lee in his book “What your doctor may not tell you about menopause”. This looks like something beneficial because there is less bone tissue breaking in the short term, but in the long term it will prevent new bone tissue from forming resulting in weaker bones.
  9. Estrogen reduces cell respiration.
  10. Estrogen encourages water and salt retention and weight gain.
  11. Estrogen is anti-libido, slowing the sex drive and it is the hormone of birth control (women with high estrogen will find it more difficult to get pregnant)

With so many side effects, I am sure you would like to know how to get rid of estrogen toxicity in the body. There are many ways we can do this, but since excess estrogen is broken down and eliminated first via the gallbladder, liver, digestive system and with the activity of probiotics the first and most important way to accomplish this would be to improve the health of these organs:

  1. The gallbladder is essential for health, it is responsible for helping the body digest necessary fats, minerals and fat soluble vitamins our heart needs so much. Since estrogen is stored in the fatty part of cells you need a working gallbladder to get rid of excess estrogen. Nowadays, who doesn’t have a digestive disorder? What is more, gallbladder surgeries are big business. According to womanshealth.com “Gallstones affect approximately one in ten Americans, and are associated with approximately 3,000 deaths annually, 800,000 hospitalizations and over 500,000 people undergo surgery for gallstones annually”. If this is your case, you are going to want to keep reading, because without a gallbladder, you will need to take extra care of your body. If you are lucky to still have your gallbladder but have gallstones, you might want to do a cleanse to get rid of them before they become painful. You can read all about it in Andreas Moritz’ book “The Liver and Gallbladder Miracle Cleanse: An All-Natural, At-Home Flush to Purify and Rejuvenate Your Body”
  2. You can also support your liver‘s detoxifying properties by using a well formulated wild crafted blend of herbs that work synergistically to assist your hard working liver. The “Liver Support Compound” from Healthy Hearts Club is an excellent combination of herbs to detoxify your liver.
  3. Then you can improve your digestion with bile salts, digestive enzymes, lecithin and apple cider vinegar after all your meals.
  4. Since excess estrogen is cleared up by the good bacteria in our gut, probiotics are a must. Having the wrong kind of bacteria in the gut, can create havoc and sabotage our efforts to get our liver and digestive system in pristine condition. You can further support your digestive system with fermented foods like kefir, kombucha, sauerkraut, etc. You can visit this web site www.culturesforhealth.com for a free e-books on how to prepare them at home.

This 4-step approach will not only help you remove excess estrogen, it will also improve your overall health which will support your heart health. I believe it is essential because without a healthy digestive system we will not be able to digest, absorb and assimilate the nutrients our heart needs.

To further assist your body in the elimination of excess estrogen you can use:

  1. Vitamin E, 400 mg of mixed tocopherols and tocotrienols a day, taken together with selenium (around 400 mcg/day).
  2. Cayenne is a great cleanser for the body. You can find it as an active ingredient in high concentrations in many of the Heart and Body products, namely the “Heart and Body Extract”, the “Bone and Joint Extract“, the “Kidney/Bladder Extract”. The “Blood Purifier” is great for purifying the blood.

The thyroid connection

Iodine is a great way to support excess estrogen detoxification apart from being an essential mineral. According to the W.H.O., iodine deficiency is one of the most marked mineral deficiencies all over the world. Breast cancer, endomitrial cancer, prostate and thyroid disease are all signs of iodine deficiency. The “Heart and Body Extract” is a wonderful source of kelp, rich in iodine. According to Ben Fuchs, when it comes to protection from excess estrogen, there is no mineral that is more important than iodine. Apart from this, iodine is critical for mental functioning and according to the “American Journal of Clinical nutrition” iodine deficiency can prevent children from attaining their full intellectual potential. Signs of iodine deficiency in children are cretinism, brain issues, disorder in walking and growth. Expecting and lactating mothers should supplement with this essential mineral so the babies can get it through her, either in the womb or breast milk. According to the W.H.O., 1/3 of children in the whole world are deficient in iodine and iodine is the most preventable cause of brain damage in children and lower IQs in adults.

Iodine will not only protect you from excess estrogen, it will also protect you from bromine, that is toxic to our body. Bromine is found in fire retardant materials like mattresses, carpets, clothing, it is also used to bleach flour, cereals, pastries, bread, pasta, and in soda drinks it is called B.V.O. (brominated vegetable oil) which is used as an emulsifier. What happens when you are deficient in iodine is the body will absorb bromine instead because it looks a lot like iodine. However, when iodine is present in our diet, the body will displace bromine and eliminate it from our glands. If you start breaking out after beginning your supplementation of iodine, it just means your body is getting rid of the toxic bromine and replacing it with iodine, it is not that iodine is bad!

Iodine is essential and without it, we would die. Iodine can also help you get rid of fluoride, the substance that is supposed to take care of cavities. In turns out that fluoride is toxic. Fluoride can calcify both the pineal gland and the thyroid gland. The pineal gland is the master gland in the body, it produces two very important hormones, serotonin and melatonin. Serotonin is a hormone of alertness the body releases with light, melatonin is a hormone that helps you sleep and it is released with darkness. If you are deficient in iodine, your body will absorb the fluoride if that is all it has. And if you are drinking tap water or using fluoridated toothpaste, you are probably getting a lot of fluoride too. If you cannot use a water filter to remove the fluoride from your drinking water, make sure you saturate your thyroid with iodine.

Two thirds of the iodine in our body is stored in the thyroid and it is an essential component of thyroid hormone. Since the thyroid regulates EVERYTHING else in the body, if it is not working properly this will be the beginning of every degenerative disease there is, including heart disease, muscle and nerve problems, osteoporosis, etc.

If this was not enough, iodine keeps all the glands healthy: adrenal glands, pituitary glands and the thymus gland (our immune system gland). For diabetics, iodine plays an important role in the health of the pancreatic health and it is very important for the health of the liver, like in non-alcoholic fatty liver disease which is so prevalent nowadays, even in young children.

Iodine prevents breast cancer in women and prostate cancer in men and can help against fibromyalgia. All this is despite the fact that health authorities claim we get enough iodine from iodized salt.

When it comes to iodine absorption, as with any other minerals, you need to have a healthy gallbladder, liver and digestive system all of which like we said before are necessary for absorbing fats too. So, you see, the gallbladder is necessary for the health of your heart and your entire body. Without being able to absorb fats (essential fatty acids) and minerals (iodine, calcium, zinc, strontium, magnesium, selenium) and fatty vitamins (D, E, A, K), your heart will suffer.

Know your hormones, save your heart

Another strategy to balance excess estrogen involves what is called “homeostasis”, which simply means “balance”. In this sense, health could be explained as a balance of two opposites, and disease as a lack of balance in the body. You can think of it as a thermostat that keeps the temperature in your house the same, without up or downs. In the body this balance is accomplished by the work of hormones: they regulate everything and they must co-exist in balance in the body or disease will be the result. Some examples of this balance are: Serotonin-melatonin, insulin-glucagon, estrogen-progesterone, testosterone-cortisol. For the purpose of our discussion we will focus on estrogen and progesterone.

All the negative effects of estrogen we discussed before can be balanced with estrogen’s partner: progesterone. While estrogen is a stress hormone, progesterone is a relaxation hormone and balances everything estrogen does in the body. Let us see how:

  1. Progesterone is the hormone of pregnancy (progesterone means ‘pro-gestation’), Progesterone keeps tissue from growing too fast, protects against fibroids, cysts and tumors. In an article of the European Journal of Cancer, progesterone is said to prohibit the proliferation of breast cancer tumor cells.
  2. Progesterone restores blood vessels tone by strengthening them and keeps the blood moving smoothly.
  3. Progesterone helps the body process sugar, supports the activity of insulin so the pancreas does not have to pump out so much and progesterone can help also reduce the toxicity of too much insulin.
  4. Progesterone helps the body store zinc.
  5. Progesterone can actually help the body form new bone tissue.
  6. Progesterone relaxes the body and strengthens the immune system. It can also be very helpful for auto-immune diseases of the nerves, specially multiple sclerosis. Women are more likely to develop these kind of diseases than men.
  7. Progesterone is one of the most important fat loss hormones the body makes, it is a diuretic and helps your body process salt.
  8. Progesterone is known to be one of the most thermogenic hormones there is because it increases metabolism. By increasing body heat and metabolism, progesterone will help you lose weight, also improve the circulatory system by preventing blood clotting.
  9. Progesterone stimulates the sex drive.
  10. Progesterone has a relaxing effect in the body.
  11. Progesterone improves cell respiration and oxygen utilization.

What are the best sources of progesterone? This might surprise you, but mistletoe, known since ancient times, is a powerful stimulator and activator of progesterone. In an article published by the University of Adelaide Australia in November 2012, a study conducted on mistletoe found it to be a very powerful anticancer compound, because of its progesterone stimulating properties. In this article, mistletoe was recommended as an alternative to chemotherapy in colon cancer because of its efficiency in destroying colon cancer cells and being gentler on the intestinal cells than chemotherapy. While mistletoe has already been recognized as an alternative treatment for chemotherapy in Europe, in the U.S. is not very well known, but if you are reading this you can now take advantage of the “Heart and Body Extract” for its progesterone up-regulating properties, anti cancer as well as many other health benefits like improved circulation, relaxation, etc.

Menopause and heart disease

Apart from pregnancy and estrogen, there is another stress factor women have to deal with that can increases their risks of heart disease: menopause. Menopause can be a very stressing time in a women’s life if it is not understood. The changes that occur in the woman’s body during peri-menopause and menopause can be explained as follows: the reproductive system stops producing the sex hormones we discussed earlier in detail, estrogen and progesterone and the adrenals then pick up the slack by becoming the body’s only producers of estrogen and progesterone, thus replacing the ovaries. This is very important to understand and can be the difference between a miserable menopause and one without symptoms.

The adrenals are two small organs sitting on top of the kidneys (ad-renal means close to the kidneys) known as our stress glands, which means they help our body handle stress. During menopause your already hard working adrenals have a new job to do: make estrogen and progesterone, and that can burden them even more. Symptoms like insomnia, hot flashes, anxiety, aging skin, dark spots, wrinkles etc are not a ‘normal’ part of your new life, but a manifestation of an excessive stress response. You could say the adrenals are screaming for help!. This excessive stress response I believe is another reason women have a higher risk for heart disease than men.

However, you can support your adrenals and spare yourself from having all the unpleasant symptoms of menopause. So many doctors put menopausal women on HRT claiming it is bio-identical or natural, but according to pharmacist Ben Fuchs there is not such a thing. What is more, HRT can be another big stress for women going through menopause because of the estrogen overload, proof of this is the many side effects HRT has, including blood clots. Instead, he recommends supporting your adrenals so you can take a load off these hard working organs.
What is important to understand about the adrenals is that they are connected to the thyroid, so by helping the adrenals you are helping your thyroid too because they work together. When the adrenals are overloaded, they can slow down or even shut down the thyroid, which we have already explained, is the regulator of EVERYTHING else in the body. We can support our thyroid like we explained before, but because now the adrenals become a huge player, we also need to support the adrenals. This is so very important in my opinion, because if these two organs, the thyroid and the adrenals are left un cared, it can put a tremendous burden in the heart, causing high blood pressure and other problems. How can you help your adrenals then?

  1. First of all sea salt can be very beneficial, the adrenals love minerals.
  2. The B vitamins, all of them work as a team, but vitamin B 5 and B 12 are specially important for the adrenals. The “Female Balance Extract” from Healthy Hearts Club is an excellent source of biotin, B 5 and B 3, take it together with some B-100 capsules for extra support.
  3. Vitamin C is very important for adrenals too, take several grams a day in divided doses.
  4. Magnesium glycinate, 1000 mg to 2000 mg. This one will relax you too so take it before going to sleep, together with the “Calcium Extract” from Healthy Hearts Club and some vitamin K 2 (1-5 grams).
  5. Very important too for adrenal health is cholesterol, which is the raw material the body uses to make many important hormones like: estrogen, progesterone, pregnenolone, DHEA, cortisol and Vitamin D. If you are under a lot of stress, cholesterol will be used primarily to make a stress hormone called cortisol, so your body will not be able to make enough of the estrogen and progesterone it needs to get you through menopause without symptoms (insomnia, hot flashes, anxiety, loss of libido, accelerated aging, dark spots on the skin, wrinkles, dryness…, all of the things that are considered ‘normal’ part of aging). Cortisol is a stress hormone that opposes several other hormones like estrogen and progesterone. Lowering cortisol means reducing stress, relaxing, deep breathing, eliminating problem foods, keeping blood sugar stable by eliminating sugar from the diet and fast burning carbohydrates like pasta, bread, cereals, cakes, candies and avoiding hypoglycemia by eating more protein. Something very important to understand about the nervous system is that it is highly electrical, which means that it depends on electrical energy flowing smoothly. Stress acts like an electrical glitch. Since the heart and the brain are electrical organs, stress can affect both. Thereby the importance of relaxing for heart and brain health. There is nothing more stressing to the body than sugar, sugar is a toxin and it interrupts the flow of electricity in the body, it also makes tiny capillaries ‘explode’ which is the reason diabetics go blind!

If you follow these easy steps you will take a load off the adrenal glands, support the thyroid and in turn help your heart. The “Stress Extract” from the Healthy Hearts Club is an excellent combination of herbs (including mistletoe) that will also help you with your stress levels and help you get a restful sleep.

To sum up, women run a higher risk for heart disease than men. Pregnancy and lack of nutrition, excess estrogen, HRT, peri-menopause and menopause without proper nutrition can all become the contributing factors for heart disease. There are many things women can do to take care of themselves…Love your body and your heart will take care of you.