New Supplements for Heart Health

July 2018

By Christine Cheng, R.Ph. and Fred Cheng, R.Ph.

Even though our risk of cardiovascular disease increases as we age, it doesn’t mean we just have to sit here and accept that! Eat a diet rich in vegetables, fruits, and lean sources of protein. If you smoke or use tobacco products, stop! Do some form of exercise for 30minutes on most days of the week. If you’re overweight, losing weight will reduce the load on your heart. Get good quality sleep. Find ways to manage (if not eliminate) the stresses in your life. Consider supplementation to increase your chances of beating the odds. There are a couple of newer products on the market that warrant some attention.

Purica (makers of Recovery®) makes a supplement called, PROVASCIN, which contains various nutraceuticals to support heart health in men and women of all ages. CO-ENZYME Q10 (CoQ10) is included to help with arterial relaxation, which can result in decreased blood pressure.  L-CARNITINE is an amino acid that aids in energy production. Its supplementation appears to improve symptoms of and exercise tolerance in those with angina and/or congestive heart failure. ALPHA-KETOGLUTARIC ACID is reported to be able to bind ammonia in the blood and thus reduce its potential to damage the heart, blood vessels, brain, kidneys and other tissues. BETAINE is a derivative of the amino acid glycine that can lower levels of homocysteine, another amino acid that can damage arteries and potentially lead to atherosclerosis and blood clot formation. CHAGA is a medicinal mushroom with adaptogenic properties, i.e., it can help the body adapt to stress, thereby mitigating a risk factor for heart disease. ALPHA-LIPOIC ACID is an antioxidant that can decrease blood glucose levels, which is important because high blood glucose levels can cause a process called glycation in the blood vessels that can lead to stiffening of the arteries.

Another supplement that was designed with the priniciples of Traditional Chinese Medicine in mind is SALVTONIC by Biomed™. This supplement contains Salvia miltiorrhiza  (“Danshen”) which can dilate coronary arteries, Panax Notoginseng (“Sanqi”), which can also dilate the coronary vessels and reduce vascular resistance, and Borneol, which may act similar to aspirin in its anti-platelet actions. Together, these herbs can improve circulation, increase blood flow, and prevent blood clots. This combination can also increase microcirculation, thereby reducing angina (chest pain) and diabetic complications such as diabetic nephropathy. Interestingly, this supplement is undergoing Phase 3 FDA clinical trials in the U.S.A.

Although these supplements have good track records in terms of safety, please check with your healthcare practitioner prior to starting any supplement.

(Christine and Fred Cheng are a passionate, charismatic sister-brother pharmacist team at their unique, family-owned and operated Pharmasave stores in Cloverdale and Steveston, B.C. They specialize in natural remedies and compounding for both human and veterinarian use.  Everything mentioned in their article is available InStore.  They would love to hear from you or meet you at one of their seminars.  Of course, before you begin any activity program or try any OTC supplementation, check with your physician and pharmacist.)

***All information posted and shared by Pharmasave Steveston Village is offered to provide information and choices regarding nutritional support for various health concerns, none of which is intended to be a treatment protocol for any disease state. The information does not replace seeking professional advice from your physician. Consult your health care practitioner before taking dietary supplements.

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