Pharmaceutical Companies Expanding Revenues at the Expense of Our Children

Evidentially the pharmaceutical companies aren’t happy or satisfied with over-medicating the U.S. adult population.  They now want to increase the rate at which children are being drugged.
 
Some of you may not have read my article on the rapid increase in the number of prescriptions taken by the elderly in the U.S.  Even though there is no observable benefit or decrease in various diseases such as diabetes, hypertension etc for which these drugs are prescribed, the number has doubled annually in the past 15 years.
 
Don’t let your physician or the pharmaceutical companies expand their revenues at the expense of our children.  Read this article.  —  Curt Hendrix
 

YOU WILL BE SHOCKED TO DISCOVER WHERE THE AMERICAN HEALTHCARE SYSTEM RANKS WORLD-WIDE

I am proud to be an American but that doesn’t mean I shut my eyes and am blind to the facts about our healthcare system.

We, as American have been sold a “bill of goods” about the quality of the healthcare we receive that is far from accurate.  From the healthcare insurance companies, to the hospitals rendering services and especially by the pharmaceutical companies, we have been led to believe that we get the best medical and healthcare treatment in the world………………THIS COULD NOT BE FURTHER FROM THE TRUTH!   We take more prescription drugs than any other country.  We pay the most for our healthcare per person and our system and health ranking world-wide are failing miserably.

Statistics reported by the World Health Organization (WHO) state:

*The U.S. has dropped from 11th in the world for life expectancy to 42nd.

*The U.S. leads the world in all chronic, degenerative diseases, cardiovascular disease, asthma, allergies, depression, mental illness, autoimmune diseases, all forms of cancer, osteoporosis and obesity.

*The U.S. leads the world in infant mortality.

We cannot count on this system to keep us well.  We cannot count on machines and chemicals that are foreign to our bodies to be our first line of defense in staying well and living long lives………..this is counter-intuitive to common sense.

Diet, exercise and supplements that are known to fuel, protect and heal our bodies should be our FIRST LINES OF NOT ONLY DEFENSE BUT OFFENSE IN REALIZING OUR GOALS FOR VIBRANT, ENERGETIC LONG LIVES.

Fibromyalgia: Symptoms, Conventional & Alternative Treatments

Fibromyalgia or FMS (Fibromyalgia Syndrome)

FMS is a common disorder affecting tens of millions of people worldwide, but is very complex and not well understood. The cause of FMS is not known. FMS occurs 80 percent of the time in women between the ages of 25-60. All people with fibromyalgia have widespread, significant pain. Other symptoms that may accompany FMS are: Unrestoring sleep Body Stiffness Headache Dysmenorrhea (Painful menstrual periods) Irritable bowel, with bouts of diarrhea and/or constipation Decreased ability to concentrate Mood disorders Restless leg syndrome Bladder and urinary issues Numbness and/or tingling (parathesias) in different parts of the body Varying degrees of sexual dysfunction Some studies have shown that 50% of people suffering with FMS and take no medications will go into full remission within 2 years.

Though theories abound as to the cause(s) of FMS none have been proven. While discussion of the theories is interesting, it is not definitive, so I would prefer to discuss treatment options that have shown success in some sufferers.

Conventional treatments:

Non-Steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) can help with the pain but are not good long-term solutions.

Antidepressants – Selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor drugs (SSRI’s)s like Prozac or Paxil as well as tricylic antidepressants like Elavil help some people in treating the pain, the low energy and sleeping problems, but many people experience side-effects and don’t like the way they feel when using these drugs. (constipation, dry mouth, low libido, weight gain).

Sleeping Aides – Drugs like Ambien can help with the insomnia but patients can feel drowsy in the morning and many develop tolerances to these drugs.

Prescription drugs approved for the treatment of FMS – Lyrica, Cymbalta, and Savella. Lyrica may improve daily function in some FMS patients.

The most common side-effects of Lyrica are: ·

Dizziness — in up to 45 percent of people ·
Drowsiness — up to 28 percent ·
Coordination problems — up to 20 percent ·
Significant weight gain — up to 16 percent ·
Dry mouth — up to 15 percent ·
Infections — up to 14 percent ·
Headaches — up to 14 percent ·
Accidental injury — up to 11 percent ·
Shakiness (tremors) — up to 11 percent.

Alternative treatment options for Fibromyalgia

It is important to note that the following alternative treatment options for FMS have been studied in only small groups of patients. And while some have shown success, it is difficult to know in what percentage of people they will work with out larger studies being done.

1-Oxidative stress is elevated in FMS sufferers. – Taking supplemental antioxidants like vitamin C, E and herbal supplements like grape seed extract, curcumin, and resveratrol may help to decrease damage done by free radicals. High levels of oxidative stress markers are found in FMS patients. Those taking these supplements may help reduce any tissue damage, it is not proven that they will provide any symptomatic relief.

2- Omega-3 fish oils may help to reduce inflammation associated with FMS. 1500-3000 mg/day of combined EPA and DHA found in these oils is a reasonable dose. 3 – Magnesium and malic acid – have been found in several, small human studies to reduce the pain and several other symptoms of FMS. 500 mg/day of magnesium and 1500 mg/day of Malic acid (malate) are the recommended doses.

4 – Some human studies have shown the D-Ribose a 5 carbon-sugar that is structurally related to ATP the energy forming molecule in our cells, helps with re-establishing energy and reducing pain. It can be purchased as a powder and mixed into liquids. It is also very effective for energizing the heart as well. 3 grams per day is the recommended dose.

5 – 5-hydroxytrytophan (5-HTP) is a precursor to serotonin and has been found in human studies to help with the symptoms of FMS at a dose of 100 mg 3X per day. 5-HTP has also been shown to help with sleep, migraine headaches and weight loss. Some people react negatively with headaches to 5-HTP so pay attention to how you feel while taking it. Results could take several weeks. (do not use 5-HTP is you are taking anti-depressants).

6 – Melatonin – Some FMS sufferers have been found to be low in melatonin a brain hormone that helps with sleep. Starting with 1 mg/night of melatonin (and if tolerated and more is necessary – up to 6mg/night) monitor if your FMS related insomnia improves as well as other symptoms.

7- Acetyl-L-carnitine – 500 mg/day for ten weeks was found to decrease muscle pain and improve over-all health and well being in FMS sufferers.

8- Mild Exercise of 30-45 minutes of walking everyday has been shown to reduce the symptoms of FMS.

 Combining these options?

There are pros and cons to combining these options all at one time. The pro would be that you have more mechanisms working for you that might generate results more quickly and powerfully. The con is that they could interact with one another and cause minor side-effects. Also, if they work, you won’t know which one worked or if they were all actually necessary.

Here’s what I suggest:  Unless there is a specific one that you want to try by itself to see how it works for you, I would combine #1,2,3,4, 7, and 8 and give them 1-2 months to see if they help you to improve.  If they really help, don’t change a thing. It you get partial help but sleep continues to be a problem then add 1mg of melatonin at night. If it helps you to sleep better stay with that dose. If it didn’t help you to sleep better but you didn’t feel any adverse effects, increase to 2 mg and go up to 6 mg if you need to. (Discontinue if you get headaches or dreams that upset you.)

Good luck,  I hope you found this fibromyalgia review to be helpful.

Curt Hendrix M.S. C.C.N. C.N.S.

 Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Curt_Hendrix

Caloric Restriction = Weight Loss and Longevity

A great deal of research regarding the life-extending benefits of “caloric restriction” is being published. To date, most of it, though promising, demonstrated benefits in non-human models.

Recently a particularly encouraging study on Labrador retriever dogs, indicated that cutting calories intake by 30% increased the life span of these dogs by 2 years. Given the average life span of this species, that was an increase of over 20%. Quite remarkable.

I would strongly suggest to those who have dogs (especially larger dogs 50+) to consider cutting back their pets caloric intake. 

I did this with my 4 year old, black German shepherd and his weight went from 100 lbs to 86lbs and his energy levels increased significantly. Several people upon meeting him for the first time, thought he was a puppy, no more than 8-12 months old.

Though proof of this concept for humans is not yet established, it is my bet that it will be. In some respects, digesting and metabolizing food puts demands on your body that can be considered contributors to aging.

The more one eats, the more free radicals they will generate, the more their bodies will have to detoxify and remove bi-products of digestion and metabolism both systemically and cellularly. The benefits of reducing calories goes beyond just the weight loss that occurs. Calorie restriction/reduction may be the best form of life insurance we can get, and it’s free.

Now a welcomed study from Tufts University has shown that caloric restriction in humans actually boosts our immune response. As humans age, their immune response tends to decline and become less efficient. Though animal studies have previously shown that caloric restriction improves immune function, this study is the first to show the same benefit in humans. Continue reading

Do Not Take This Statin Cholesterol Lowering Drug Until You Read This!

598 out of every 600 People will needlessly take and pay for a newly approved drug that will do nothing for them except potentially introduce side-effects they did not have before.

The FDA recently approved the use of the statin cholesterol lowering drug Crestor, in healthy people whose cholesterol was not elevated. The alleged benefit of taking the drug is to reduce heart attacks and strokes in healthy people who had 2 risk factors – High C-Reactive Protein (which is a measure of inflammation) and high blood pressure or smoking.

The FDA based it’s approval to use Crestor preventively to reduce the risk of heart attack and stroke because a large study showed about a 50+% risk reduction in this group of patients. WHAT COULD BE BAD ABOUT THAT?

It is very hard to understand why the FDA allows this 50% number to be used, without significant explanation to patients of the real meaning, benefits and risks of this statistic.

HERE IS THE EXPLANATION AS TO WHY ALLOWING THIS STATISTIC TO BE QUOTED IS SO MISLEADING.

The group of patients who were studied and to whom the medicine will be recommended, are basically healthy people who have no history of heart disease or stroke. If they smoke or have high blood pressure + show high C-Reactive protein, they qualify for the drug. The absolute risk of this group of patients for having a heart attack or stroke is 1/3 of 1 percent if they do nothing and don’t take the drug. In other words for every 600 patients in this group who do nothing, only 2 will ever have a heart attack or stroke. (and because they are healthy even those 2 heart attacks or strokes will probably not be life threatening).

Fast forward -A pharmaceutical giant conducts a study and gives thousands of these patients Crestor which costs $3.50 per pill per day and the study found that instead of 2 heart attacks or strokes occurring in every 600 patients, only 1 heart attack or stroke will occur in every 600 patients. Yes this is a reduction of 50% but 50% of a number that was so tiny, that it was an insignificant risk of occurring in these patients had they done nothing.

Another way to look at this is that the pharmaceutical company convinced the FDA to approve a drug (with potential serious side-effects) that needlessly put 598 people on a medicine they didn’t ever need and expose them to side-effects like liver toxicity and muscle problems, and increased risk of diabetes, to eliminate 1 (ONE) heart attack or stroke in 600 people. 598 people out of 600 pay for a drug that they not only didn’t need but could introduce serious health issues they didn’t have before.

To complicate the picture even more, the physician who receives a royalty on every C-reactive protein lab test run in the country, was the physician who convinced the drug company to do the study.

Many well known and respected physicians are concerned at the prospect of giving statin drugs to healthy people for such a ridiculously small benefit and other potential problems.

FDA Warning: Anti-Depressants & Migraine Prescription Drugs

ROCKVILLE, Md., July 20 — Mixing common migraine drugs  with antidepressants  can trigger a life-threatening condition called serotonin-syndrome, the FDA has warned.

Serotonin-syndrome is characterized by rapid heart beat, sudden changes in blood pressure, and increased body temperature. Other symptoms include restlessness, hallucinations, loss of coordination, overactive reflexes, nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea.

Options successful at preventing the occurrence of migraines would decrease the risk described above in patients taking anti-depressant and experiencing migraines.

See www.MigreLief.com for an all natural dietary supplement for the nutritional support of cerebrovascular function in migraine sufferers.

Do Not Take Another Statin Drug to Lower Your Cholesterol Until You Read This!

Collectively the revenues generated by statin cholesterol lowering drugs, like Lipitor, Crestor, Zocor, and Pravachol are in excess of 10 billion dollars a year!

Is taking these drugs a risk unto itself? The answer is a resounding….YES!

Though these drugs are shown to reduce certain cardiovascular risks in people who have cardiovascular risk factors such as; hypertension, low HDL cholesterol, insulin resistance, high triglycerides, physicians are now recommending these drugs to people who don’t have any of these risks despite the fact that few if any studies show that there are any long-term benefits in people who have no cardiovascular risk factors.

The way statin drugs work is by blocking an enzyme (HMG-CoA reductase) that interferes with the synthesis of cholesterol. The fact that cholesterol is an essential building block of cellular membranes and that the average person who lives to be 100 years old or more, usually has much higher than recommended levels of total cholesterol, raises some very interesting questions and will be addressed in a subsequent article.

So where does the risk come in? Well, in blocking the action of HMG-CoA reductase, the statin drugs also block the synthesis of a compound necessary for production of energy in the muscles (including the heart muscles) and for other crucial bodily functions!

The compound, Co-Enzyme Q10 is an essential nutrient that is involved in energy production that occurs in the mitochondria. (The energy producing factories in our cells). The heart requires high levels of Co-Q10.

Side effects of CoQ-10 deficiency

Statin drugs often cause muscle pain and weakness. This is a condition known as rhabdomyolysis. Often because many people taking statin drugs are older, they think the pain is due to something else like arthritis, or soreness from exercise and very often goes unreported.

Rhabdomyolysis, if severe, can result in death related to acute kidney failure. The statin drug, Baycol, caused dozens of deaths due to rhabdomyolysis and was taken off the market.

Though not present on the labels of statin drugs when they were first released, all statin drug labels now carry the following warning – “Unexplained muscle pain and weakness could be a sign of a rare but serious side effect and should be reported to your doctor right away.”

Not So Rare

Dr. Beatrice Golomb of San Diego, California, reported in her study findings, that contrary to the 2-3 % that the pharmaceutical industry reports for occurrence of muscle pain, that as many as 98% on some statin drugs experience this problem.

Memory Loss

Some patients taking statin drugs report memory loss and inability to concentrate. Accumulated data indicates that 50% of these cognitive issues occur within 5-60 days of starting statin treatment. Though most patients seem to recover after stopping the drug, it seems a small percentage may not. The actual percentage of statin users who experience these cognitive issues is not well established.

Nerve Pain and Dysfunction

It is estimated that 10-20% of people taking statin drugs will get neuropathy, resulting in feelings of fatigue, pain while walking and nerve tingling. A study from Denmark reported that long-term use of statin drugs (2 years or more) could increase the risk of developing neuropathy from 400-1400%. Individuals who are highly susceptible could experience neuropathy much sooner.

I urge my readers who are taking statin drugs to lower their cholesterol to supplement a minimum of 100 mg. per day of Co-Q. For those of you who are in major discomfort or have other heart issues regarding function or blood pressure, 300 mg. per day of Co-Q-10 is recommended.

Yours in health, and education,

Curt Hendrix M.S. C.N.S.  C.C.N.

Alice In Wonderland…Lewis Caroll’s Imagination or Mushrooms?

Johnny Depp is recreating Lewis Caroll’s, Mad Hatter from Alice In Wonderland. The incredible fantasy that Caroll creates of Alice’s mad romp through Wonderland has caused millions to suspect that Caroll had to have been on some sort of acid or other mind altering compounds to create such vivid, outlandish, thoughts and images.

The available data does not support this theory, but one does wonder when reading the story or watching previous visual presentations of the story, what symbolism, if any, those gigantic mushrooms/toadstools were meant to suggest? Oh, and let’s not forget the caterpillar smoking the bong!

There is no clear distinction between the use of the term mushroom vs. toadstool but over time, in some cultures, the word toadstool inferred that the mushroom was poisonous and of course, had the typical umbrella-like look.

Take a look at some of the fascinating mushroom photos below. They hardly look real and remind me of childhood images I recall from watching Alice.  

Amanita Muscaria 

The classic example of a toadstool is Amanita Muscaria. The various species of Amanita Muscaria mushrooms are very colorful and truly fascinating to look at. Amanita is not very well known for any particular health benefits but some shamans in Siberia did use it to go into a trance. It is also not particularly famous as an edible mushroom, and is only edible after it has been boiled in water thoroughly to remove small amounts of toxins.

 
Trametes Versicolor                         

Trametes Versicolor is also called TurkeyTail (because of the resemblance). Extracted from this mushroom is a long chain sugar known as Polysaccharide-K (PSK). PSK is approved for adjunctive (used with other medicines) cancer treatment in humans, in Japan, China and some places in Europe.

 

 

Psilocybe Mushrooms (aka Magic Mushrooms, Shrooms, Mushies)

Psilocybe mushrooms cause psychedelic and hallucinogenic experiences. These mushrooms are both non-toxic and non-addictive. A study done at Johns Hopkins University on normal middle aged, college educated, adults, with no history of drug abuse, reported that two thirds of the participants who took these mushrooms had a profound religious experience and ranked the experience among the top 5 in their life times. One third of the participants found the experience caused them to become anxious. Interestingly enough, in a similar experiment, the participants still felt the magnitude of the religious experience 14 months later.

Purported but not well substantiated health benefits include:

1. Treatment for cluster headaches
2. Treatment for obsessive-compulsive disorder.


Reishi (Lingzhi)

Reishi has been medicinally used for many centuries in Asia. Studies show its benefits for: enhancing immune function, as an anti-fungal, an anti-bacterial, liver protectant, male urinary function and possible weight loss aid (though the back-up science is meager).

It may have anti-cancer effects against some kinds of tumors by inhibiting the formation of new blood supply and preventing migration of the tumor cells (metastasis). There is moderate evidence that Reishi may reduce cholesterol.


Maitake Mushrooms (Grifola Fondosa)

 Maitake is classified as an adaptogen, that can help the body adapt to stress and resist infection. Adaptogens have the ability to raise what is low and lower what is too high…..as in the case of blood pressure or blood sugar for example.

 Being a powerful immune-booster, maitake extracts can help prevent infection from both bacterial and viruses, as well as perhaps provide the body with support to fight some cancers when used with chemotherapy agents. These agents have been shown, in some studies, to be more effective when used in conjunction with the maitake. Furthermore, the side effects of the chemotherapy were reduced in many patients when maitake was added.
I hope you enjoyed this brief look at these amazing fungi.

Yours in health, and education,

Curt Hendrix M.S. C.N.S.  C.C.N.

Calcium and Osteoporosis – The Misunderstood Benefits and Risks of Calcium Supplementation

There are many interesting facts you may not know about calcium supplementation and osteoporosis.

FACTS:

  • Calcium supplementation is big business
  • 50% of all women over age 65 and 25% of all men will experience at least one osteoporotic fracture in their life time
  • The governments’ understanding of micronutrient requirements as expressed in the RDI’s is archaic
  • Most if not all RDI’s for vitamins and minerals are woefully low, while the RDI of 1,000-1,500mg per day of calcium could be dangerously highFACT: Bantu women in Africa have lower estrogen levels than U.S. women both before and after menopause. They consume less than 500mg per day of calcium yet osteoporotic fractures are extremely rare.FACT: The Japanese dietary calcium intake is 540mg per day yet their hip fracture rate is half of western countries.FACT: A study published in the New England Journal of Medicine showed that post-menopausal women who took 2,000mg of calcium per day had the same rate of bone loss as those on placebo.

    FACT: A study done by the Mayo Clinic on 106 women of various ages demonstrated that over a 2.6 to 6.6 year observation period there was no correlation between calcium supplementation and the rate of bone loss.

    FACT: Calcium by itself doesn’t work very well. A study of 26 post-menopausal women who were placed on HRT and a “bone healthy” diet demonstrated a meager increase of BMD (Bone Mineral Density) of .7%. The group that was given a mixture of calcium and other supportive and synergistic micronutrients demonstrated an increase in BMD 16 times greater than the control.

    FACT: A 1981 study of calcium versus calcium and supportive co-factors demonstrated that the mixture increased BMD 200-300% greater than calcium alone.

    DANGER: Arteriosclerosis (hardening of the arteries) is caused by calcification of these and other soft tissues throughout the body.

    DANGER: When calcium is supplemented by itself and is not being incorporated into the bone matrix, the difference between what is consumed and excreted contributes not only to arteriosclerosis but accelerated aging of soft tissues throughout the body.

    FACT: Two forms of a lesser known vitamin have been shown to be 56-74% deficient in people with osteoporosis.

    FACT: This same vitamin has been shown to increase the absorption of calcium into the osteocalcin matrix by 50% in just 14 days.

    FACT: This same vitamin has been shown in vitro and in animals to draw calcium out of soft tissues and reverse calcification.

    FACT: Several studies have shown that absorption of calcium by humans decreases with age. Calcium absorption can be enhanced by a particular kind of health promoting fiber.

    FACT: Deposition of calcium into the bone matrix is only half of the BMD equation. Bone Resorption (the loss of bone) must also be addressed!

    FACT: Two herbs with substantial health promoting benefits in areas other than BMD have been shown in vitro and in animals to decrease osteoclast (cells that consume bone) activity and decrease bone resorption. This is a mechanism similar to the bisphosponate drugs like Fosamax. But these drugs have side effects like esophageal irritation and are also expensive.

    FACT: Slowing down calcification and glycation (the aging effects of sugar on the organs of our body) is a major anti-aging benefit.

    FACT: Homocysteine which is a marker or indicator of many chronic degenerative diseases, including cardiovascular disease, and diabetes , is also higher in patients with osteoporosis. A combination of three common vitamins has been clinically shown to reduce homocysteine.

    FACT: In addition to the role it plays in bones, Calcium is essential to over-all health and longevity. But calcium must be taken correctly and with the proper supporting co-factors, biochemically, synergistic ingredients.

    JUST TAKE SOME CALCIUM AND CALL ME IN THE MORNING?
    It perplexes me as to why some physicians and even dieticians and nutritionists aren’t a bit more careful when they tell patients or customers to take 1000-1500mg of calcium per day because it’s “healthy for their bones”?

    The assumption being made is that all or most of this large amount of calcium being recommended is actually getting into the bones. Many healthcare professionals will also recommend that the calcium be coupled with a Vitamin D, because it helps to increase the absorption of calcium into the blood (which is true).

    The question not being asked or answered is where is this calcium going once its in the blood and available systemically? Is it possible that some of this calcium is NOT winding up in the bones but in the lining of the arteries instead? This is a process known as arterial calcification which can cause arterial dysfunction. The answer is a resounding YES! Let’s take a look at what needs to happen for calcium to deposit into the bones and alternatively, not into the lining of the arteries!

    Calcium is a positively charged atom called a cation. It’s charge is +2 (divalent). In order for calcium to be absorbed into the bone matrix, a protein named osteocalcin has to undergo a process called carboxylation to be able to bind with the calcium. When osteocalcin is “under” carboxylated, the calcium will not be absorbed well or at all. Another protein called Matrix Gla Protein is found in the arterial cell wall, MGP maintains healthy soft tissue calcium metabolism protecting against arterial calcification.

    So what do the bones and the arteries have in common regarding calcium??? Vitamin K! Via the process of carboxylation, Vitamin K assures that both osteocalcin is carboxylated so that calcium can be deposited into the bone matrix, and matrix Gla via carboxylation is synthesized to prevent the deposition of calcium into the arteries.

    While Vitamin D is necessary, plays a role in the carboxylation process and has many other wellness benefits… healthy calcium metabolism both in bones and arteries is very dependent upon Vitamin K. It seems that Vitamin K-2 (menaquinones) may have more cardiovascular benefit while Vitamin K-1 phylloquinone may work better for bones… so a combination of Vitamin K-1* and K-2 * might be advisable to a dosage of at least 1mg of K-1, plus 100mcg (micrograms) of a form of K-2.*

    Taking therapeutic amounts of Vitamin K has been shown to significantly reduce fracture rates at the hip and spine, yet it does not seem to increase Bone Mineral Density (BMD). This does not surprise me because BMD does not accurately measure the architecture of the bones, just the mineral presence. Obviously, the mechanism of Vitamin K is working in a different manner. Additionally, other health benefits for Vitamin K are being written about in the literature. It seems that this vitamin may be involved in prevention of osteoarthritis, has anti-inflammatory mechanisms, may be of real benefit in preventing prostate cancer, and deficiencies may be involved in the progression of Alzheimer’s.

    To sum up, calcium intake of greater than 500-600mg per day is not necessary or useful in preventing bone fractures. Adding at least 5000 IU per day of Vitamin D-3, and at least 1-2 mg of Vitamin K, and 500mg per day of Magnesium to your daily diet will give you the protection against bone fractures that you need.

    For these reasons, and to insure that calcium ends up in your bones and not lining your arteries, it is very important to take a properly formulated supplement. A supplement with the right combination of high quality vitamins and minerals at the proper doses for healthier bones and ultimately to prevent fractures.

  • *Vitamin K-1 is also known either as phylloquinone or phytonadione. 
    * Vitamin K-2 is also known as menaquinone-7 (There is a menaquinone-4 but preliminary research seems to indicate that more of it is necessary to achieve results than the MK-7 can yeild at mcg levels).

     

    Prevent Atherosclerosis and Avoid an Angioplasty – Start Today!

    President Bill Clinton underwent an angioplasty and stent procedure yesterday. An angioplasty is a procedure whereby a balloon is inserted into an artery that is clogged. The artery is actually expanded by the balloon and the clog is flattened. At the same time as the artery expands the stent with is a metallic mesh type device also expands, locks into place and holds the artery open so that more blood can flow through it.

    President Clinton had gone through heart by pass surgery just a few years ago and yet the arteries clogged up again. The lesson to be learned here is that unless you take steps to prevent the process of atherosclerosis (the build up of plaques on the insides of your arteries) you could be at risk for the same kinds of plaque build up.

    Conventional wisdom states that by lowering LDL cholesterol, the risk of plaque build up and heart disease in lowered, at least in people with existing cardiovascular risk factors, like obesity, familial history, insulin resistance, and hypertension. But even people with out the risk factors can develop heart disease and possible heart attacks.

    The truth of the matter is that LDL in its natural state is not “sticky” and will not adhere to the insides of heart arteries very easily. It is only when the LDL becomes oxidized by free radicals and inflammatory processes in the body, that the LDL can become dangerous.

    Certain naturally occurring compounds called flavonoids are capable of substantially lowering the risk of LDL from being oxidized. Compounds like Quercetin, and Grape Seed Extract can be taken on a daily basis to prevent oxidation of LDL. Recommended amounts are about 250-500 mg. per day.