What is your favorite plant for heart health?
Q. Dear Terry, “What is your favorite plant for heart health? I would like to start taking something now to help prevent heart issues.” — Amanda R., Edmond, OK
A. Dear Amanda, Grape seed extract is perhaps one of the most powerful, natural compounds for the cardiovascular system. This botanical reduces high blood pressure (hypertension), protects the blood vessel walls from free radical damage, and prevents the dangerous oxidation of LDL cholesterol - one of the first steps on the road to a heart attack or stroke.
When looking for a grape seed extract, it is important to choose one that is standardized to contain only OPCs that are small enough to be absorbed, so you’ll get the maximum benefits. Many extracts contain tannins, which are too large to be effectively absorbed and don’t contribute to your health the same way that OPCs do. However, these tannins are counted as OPCs and enhance the label claim, even though they cannot be absorbed! Look for tannin-free French grape seed extract for maximum benefits.
I also think pomegranate, magnesium (chelated to the amino acid glycine), vitamin B6 (as pyridoxal-5-phosphate), and curcumin enhanced with turmeric essential oil can all be very useful.
Lastly, one of the biggest changes we can make to promote heart health is modifying our diet. I would start by eliminating refined sugar and carbohydrates. For more information on this, you can review my diet here or watch my webinar. Other helpful websites on this topic include: www.ketogenic-diet-resource.com and www.drperlmutter.com. You should also read the books, Grain Brain by Dr. David Perlmutter and Wheat Belly by Dr. William Davis.
Terry . . . Naturally