Archive for the ‘heart health’ Category

Worth your salt?

Wednesday, February 17th, 2010

Salt and sodium

Salt can be addictive. For anyone who has even overindulged in chips and salsa, or those delicious barbeque-flavored kettle chips-you know what I’m talking about.  And of course, our bodies need salt to survive, but we (as Americans especially) tend to overdo it.  I recently came across a Japanese study that indicates a diet lower in sodium and higher in potassium can lessen the incident of stroke and cardiovascular disease:

In a prospective study involving 58,730 Japanese men and women with no history of stroke, coronary heart disease, or cancer, aged 40-79 years, results indicate that high sodium intake and low potassium intake may be associated with an increased risk of mortality from cardiovascular disease. During 745,161 person-years of follow-up, 986 deaths from stroke (153 subarachnoid hemorrhages, 227 intraparenchymal hemorrhages, and 510 ischemic strokes) and 424 deaths from coronary heart disease were recorded. Sodium intake was observed to be positively associated with mortality from total stroke, ischemic stroke, and total cardiovascular disease. After adjusting for confounders, the highest quintile for sodium intake was associated with a 55% increased risk of total stroke related mortality, a 104% increased risk of ischemic stroke related mortality, and a 42% increased risk of total cardiovascular disease related mortality, compared with the lowest quintile of sodium intake. On the other hand, potassium intake was inversely associated with mortality from coronary heart disease and total cardiovascular disease, where the highest quintile for potassium intake was associated with a 35% reduced risk of coronary heart disease related mortality and a 27% reduced risk of total cardiovascular disease related mortality, compared with the lowest quintile of potassium intake. Thus, the authors of this study conclude, “A high sodium intake and a low potassium intake may increase the risk of mortality from cardiovascular disease.”

This study provides compelling evidence to shake the salt habit and instead trying seasoning your life with healthier spices!  To up your potassium intake, try eating more sweet potatoes, bananas, raisins, white beans, and clams!  Orange juice is a great source of potassium too.

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Want to learn more about healthier eating and better cardiovascular health?  Read our health archives.

Reference: http://www.vitasearch.com/get-clp-summary/37609, “Relations between dietary sodium and potassium intakes and mortality from cardiovascular disease: the Japan Collaborative Cohort Study for Evaluation of Cancer Risks,” Umesawa M, Tamakoshi A, et al, Am J Clin Nutr, 2008; 88(1): 195-202. (Address: Department of Public Health Medicine, Graduate School of Comprehensive Human Sciences, and the Institute of Community Medicine, University of Tsukuba, Tsukuba, Japan).

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Vive the french!

Thursday, January 28th, 2010

Solanova nutritional supplements with Resveratrol

The popular antioxidant Resveratrol can counteract the effects of a fatty diet?  Mais Oui!

Flaxy, buttery croissants, decadent sauces, crepe Suzette, and steak au poivre may all come to mind when we think about French cuisine.  The French have a reputation for eating what they want, smoking (which we do not condone), and drinking wine oftentimes with lunch and dinner.  So why is there a plethora of research stating that the French experience fewer instances of cardiovascular disease than say, we Americans?  It just doesn’t seem fair.

There have been many theories over the years as to why the French have been somewhat spared the unwanted effects of heart disease.  Perhaps part of the protection comes from wine, as has been suggested by countless research studies.  A powerful antioxidant found in red wine, Resveratrol, seems to have protective health properties.  Also worth noting is that the French tend to eat less than Americans.  They seem to choose quality over quantity, whereas we Americans (in truly American fashion) choose both!

A recent study explored supplementation with Resveratrol along with a high fat diet in mice and discovered that the mice that were fed a high fat diet and Resveratrol were just as healthy as mice fed a healthier/low fat diet without the Resveratrol.  A third group of mice that were simply fed a high fat/high calorie diet without Resveratrol experienced many more health problems overall than the other two groups.  And other research studies have concluded that high doses of Resveratrol can mimic some of the health benefits of caloric restriction in mice.

So there seems to be compelling evidence that this wonder antioxidant, Resveratrol, has all kinds of protective properties.  However, scientists are hypothesizing that it would take many, many glasses (or bottles!) of wine to truly reap the significant benefits of Resveratrol.  We carry a superb supplement called Rubi QNol® CoQ10 that is an amalgam of our highly absorbable Ubiquinol (the reduced form of CoQ10) plus 50 mgs of the antioxidant powerhouse Resveratrol (the equivalent of 100 glasses of wine).  Together they form a great team that fight free radical damage, boost the immune system, and can help protect the heart.

Yep, we’ll drink to that!

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Here is some more information about the power of antioxidants in our health archives. Enjoy and be healthy!

http://www.vitasearch.com/get-clp-summary/35927,

Reference: “Resveratrol improves health and survival of mice on a high-calorie diet,” Baur JA, Pearson KJ, et al, Nature, 2006; 444(7117): 337-42. (Address: Department of Pathology, Paul F. Glenn Laboratories for the Biological Mechanisms of Aging, Harvard Medical School, 77 Avenue Louis Pasteur, Boston, Massachusetts 02115, USA. E-mail: D.S. at david_sinclair@hms.harvard.edu or R.deC at deCaboRa@grc.nia.nih.gov ).

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the dark (chocolate) master

Thursday, January 21st, 2010

Heart healthy supplements

Dark chocolate.  It’s not just for dessert anymore.  It turns out that some of the components of dark chocolate are responsible for improved cardiovascular health.  Some recent research indicates that incorporating (some) dark chocolate into healthy eating habits can help reduce blood pressure, boost insulin sensitivity, and can also add to overall heart health.

In a study involving 20 subjects with never-before treated Essential Hypertension (EH), consumption of flavanol-rich dark chocolate (DC) for a period of 15 days was found to reduce blood pressure, improve insulin sensitivity, and improve several markers of cardiovascular health, as compared with consumption of flavanol-free white chocolate (WC), for the same duration of time. The subjects (10 men, 10 women; average age: 43.7 years) were randomly divided into two groups, where one group was assigned to consume DC (100 g/day – containing 88 mg flavanols) while the other group was assigned to consume WC (90 g/day – no flavanols) for 15 days, in an isocaloric manner. A 7-day chocolate-free run-in phase preceded the first 15 days of treatment, after which subjects went through another 7-day chocolate-free phase, which was followed by another 15 days of treatment, in which patients were crossed over to receive the treatment they had not received before. Various measurements were taken and evaluated after each treatment period. After consumption of DC, 24-hour non-invasive ambulatory blood pressure decreased (systolic: -11.9 mm Hg; diastolic: -8.5 mm Hg), serum LDL cholesterol decreased (from 3.4 to 3.0 mmol/L), and flow-mediated dilation (FMD) scores improved. Results from oral glucose tolerance tests (OGTTs) were used to calculate the homeostasis model assessment of insulin resistance (HOMA-IR), which decreased after consumption of DC, while both the quantitative insulin sensitivity check index (QUICK1) and insulin sensitivity index (ISI) improved after consuming DC. None of these beneficial effects were seen after consumption of WC. This study suggests, if included as part of a healthy diet with a balanced caloric intake, flavanols from cocoa, such as those found in dark chocolate, may help to improve various markers of cardiovascular health in patients with essential hypertension.

With sweet news like this, it’s easy to stay on the heart healthy track!

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Explore our health archives for many other ways to improve cardiovascular health. For heart healthy supplements, try one of our powerful antioxidant supplements with both Ubiquinol and Resveratrol, Rubi Qnol®CoQ10.

http://www.vitasearch.com/get-clp-summary/34679,

Reference: “Cocoa reduces blood pressure and insulin resistance and improves endothelium-dependent vasodilation in hypertensives,” Grassi D, Necozione S, et al, Hypertension, 2005; 46(2): 398-405. (Address: Dipartimento Internal Medicine and Public Health, University of L’Aquila, Piazzale Salvatore Tommasi 1, 67100 Coppito, L’Aquila, Italy).

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Bring on the (good) Fats!

Wednesday, January 6th, 2010

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Before you slather another piece of toast or a baked potato with loads of butter, think about what that added fat may do to your body and to your overall health.  Now that’s not to say that you can’t ever indulge in a dollop or two, but it has been discovered that it’s better to fill your life-and your plate-with “good fats” like olive oil, found most prevalently in heart healthy Mediterranean diets.  There has been myriad research indicating that a diet rich in good fats, vegetables, fish, fruits, and yes red wine, can be very good for you, your immune system and your heart.

In a study involving 3,042 men and women aged 18-89 years from the Attica region of Greece, adherence to a Mediterranean diet was found to be associated with increased levels of total antioxidant capacity (TAC), and decreased levels of oxidized LDL cholesterol. Participants, who had no clinical evidence of cardiovascular disease, completed validated food frequency questionnaires from which a ‘diet score’ was determined, which assessed the level of adherence to a Mediterranean diet. After adjustment for confounding factors, TAC was found to be 11% higher and oxidized LDL-cholesterol concentrations were found to be 19% lower among those in the highest tertile of diet score, compared with the lowest tertile. While consumption of red meat was found to be inversely associated with TAC, consumption of olive oil and fruits and vegetables, on the other hand, were found to be positively associated with TAC. This study suggests that adherence to a Mediterranean diet, through its positive effects on TAC and oxidized LDL levels, may be of benefit in maintaining cardiovascular health.

So fill your plate high with rich, antioxidant foods and reap the rewards of a healthier, happier lifestyle.

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Ensure that you are getting the best possible antioxidant protection.  And don’t settle for subpar Omega-3 supplements.  For better health choose highly potent and absorbable Omega-Gel®. And read more about other antioxidants like Resveratrol and Ubiquinol, that both play an important part in fortifying the immune system.

Reference: http://www.vitasearch.com/get-clp-summary/34703, “Adherence to the Mediterranean diet is associated with total antioxidant capacity in healthy adults: the ATTICA study,” Pitsavos C, Panagiotakos DB, et al, American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, 2005; 82(3): 694-9. (Address: First Cardiology Clinic, School of Medicine, University of Athens, Athens, Greece, and the Department of Nutrition and Dietetics, Harokopio University, Athens, Greece).

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Antioxidants to the rescue!

Thursday, December 3rd, 2009

Solanova Omega-Gel, Omega-3 fatty acid

Most of us are aware that antioxidants are good for us.  They help fortify our immune systems and protect us from free radicals that can cause cell damage.  Antioxidants are found in certain super foods like berries, salmon, whole grains, many vegetables and quality supplements.  There has been myriad research regarding the relationship between a healthy diet replete with antioxidants and certain diseases such as cancer and coronary artery disease (CAD).

In a study involving 42 patients (27 men, 15 women) with documented coronary artery disease (CAD) and 49 apparently healthy subjects (33 men, 16 women), patients with CAD were found to have significantly higher cellular DNA damage, quantified via TL, which was significantly higher in patients with CAD (87.3 microm), as compared to healthy controls (79.3 microm). In addition, levels of plasma TRAP, vitamin C, gamma-tocopherol, and alpha-carotene were lower in patients with CAD as compared to controls. Erythrocytic catalase activity, on the other hand, was increased in patients with CAD. The authors conclude, “…reduced overall antioxidant status was closely connected to higher susceptibility of DNA damage in CAD patients.”

It makes sense to protect yourself from potential diseases and other unwanted health conditions.  Grab a salmon salad, some omega-3 supplements and blueberries with frozen yogurt and start enjoying a life filled with healthy, powerful antioxidants!

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We have a lot of information about antioxidant protection.  Read all about antioxidant support in our health concerns archives!  And for unsurpassed Resveratrol health benefits, try our Rubi QNol® CoQ10 supplements with Ubiquinol.

http://www.vitasearch.com/get-clp-summary/38664

Reference: “Susceptibility to Oxidative Stress is Greater in Korean Patients with Coronary Artery Disease than Healthy Subjects,” Park E, Kyoung Park Y, et al, J Clin Biochem Nutr, 2009; 45(3): 341-6. (Address: Dept. of Food & Nutrition, Kyungnam University, Masan 631-701, Korea).

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Too much pressure

Friday, November 6th, 2009

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You’ve been bad.  Well, sort of.  You haven’t been exercising as much as you meant to, and decided not to be too strict with your diet.  Who could blame you?  We all have to stop and enjoy life a little, right?

But then you went to the doctor for a physical-good for you by the way-and found that your blood pressure was on the high side.  It happens to the best of us.  But rather than panicking about it, you decide to do a little research to figure out how you can manage this condition naturally.

First off, regular exercise is very important for overall health in general and really helps to strengthen the heart and to lower blood pressure.  If you haven’t exercised in a while, start gradually and build your way up to some kind of cardio program 4-5 days a week, as well as working in some light weight training.  If you find the gym mundane at best, bring an iPod or a good book to read while you’re using the machines.

Cutting back on salty foods and loosing a few pounds if you’re overweight can also help maintain your blood pressure right.  Some nutritional supplements boast heart healthy properties such as Omega-3 fatty acids and Coenzyme Q10 or CoQ10.  In fact, recent research has revealed a possible link between CoQ10 supplementation and healthy blood pressure levels.

It’s okay to indulge a little as long as you compensate with some healthy habits such as exercise and proper nutrition and vitamin intake.  Have a happy and healthy Autumn!

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Try our powerful Omega-Gel® and Super Q-Nol® CoQ10 for better heart health, immune system support and unsurpassed absorption.

Reference: http://www.vitasearch.com/get-clp-summary/38611 “Blood pressure lowering efficacy of coenzyme Q10 for primary hypertension,” Ho MJ, Bellusci A, et all, Cochrane Database Syst Rev, 2009; 7(4): CD007435. (Address: Faculty of Medicine, University of Toronto, Toronto, ON, Canada).


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You (usually) get what you pay for

Tuesday, October 6th, 2009

Solanova Omega Gel Omega 3 fatty acid

If you purchase a lower end car at a deep discount, you can bet that the car probably doesn’t have the greatest track record in the world.  Furthermore, you wouldn’t expect this car to perform like a Porsche or a BMW, right?  So why would you want to deep discount your health?

Not all vitamins or supplements are created equal.  Not even close.  The ubiquitous “cheap vitamins” that you see for sale in drug stores or online claim to be powerful and effective.  But if you read the fine print, oftentimes you see additives and other ingredients that aren’t beneficial.  Or you discover that in order to achieve the promised efficacy of the supplement, you are required to take six or eight of them a day, instead of a couple.  This alone can make the “discount” supplements much more expensive than originally thought.  Yet you’re still receiving (and ingesting) lower quality product.

The old saying “you get what you pay for” is generally true.  High quality, natural supplements that are optimally absorbed into the body do cost more, because they work better than their cheaper counterparts.  Why would you bother to take supplements or vitamins at all, if you weren’t sure your body was using them to full effect?  If money is an issue, and these days it is for most of us, select two or three supplements or vitamins that you know you can’t live without and invest in a high quality, proven version of them.  In the end you’ll save money, time, and effort and can rest assured that you are making the best choices for your overall health.

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Want to learn more about what you can do to achieve good daily health? Read from our health concerns archives.  For some invaluable, potent and effective nutritional supplements, check out our new CoQ10 supplement, Super QNol®, our multivitamin MultiSential Plus and our ever popular Omega-Gel® for unsurpassed antioxidant protection.

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Invest in your health

Friday, September 18th, 2009

invest_health_500x333

Unless you’ve been living out in the sand dunes of the Gobi desert in Mongolia-and perhaps even then-you’ve heard about the possibility of a bad flu season this year.

It never ceases to amaze me how much we are willing to pay for a designer sweater, a fancy meal out, or the next hot tech gadget we don’t really need.  But when it comes to our health, we often scoff at the idea of a minimal financial investment.

Do we not realize that without our good health, we wouldn’t be going out, donning that new sweater, playing on that new gadget in the fancy restaurant?  It’s high time we got our priorities straight.

And it’s not so difficult.  Getting moderate daily exercise, monitoring your weight and fat intake, and investing in good quality vitamins and nutritional supplements can make all the difference to your health.  And this flu season, we need all the help we can get to fortify our immune systems.

Lately there has been much research concluding the health significance of getting and absorbing enough vitamin D.  In fact, some preliminary studies seem to indicate that vitamin D could possibly play an especially important role in thwarting-or lessening the effects of-the H1N1 virus.  Stay tuned for more information regarding this connection.

Vitamin D has also been shown to benefit heart patients.  A recent study hypothesizes that heart patients who had low vitamin D levels could have adversely affected cardiac function.  The study therefore suggests that supplementing with vitamin D could benefit heart failure patient’s treatment.

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Would you like to read more about the health effects of vitamin D?  Check out our health library here.  Some other products for good immune system support are MultiSential Plus, and Omega-Gel®.  Remember to make an investment in your health today and collect the dividends for a lifetime.

http://www.vitasearch.com/get-clp-summary/38457

Reference: “Calcium and Vitamin D Status in Heart Failure Patients in Isfahan, Iran,” Garakyaraghi M, Kerdegari M, Siavash M, Biol Trace Elem Res, 2009 Aug 19; [Epub ahead of print]. (Address: Isfahan University of Medical Sciences, Isfahan Cardiovascular Research Center, Isfahan, Iran).

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Heartfelt Advice

Wednesday, July 29th, 2009

solanova heart health CoQ10

Sometimes when I haven’t had enough sleep or if I’ve indulged in one too many double iced lattes my heart will let me know.  Once in a while it will beat a little too fast for my taste, only to abruptly slow down again, and then resume its steady (and comforting) regular pitter-patter rhythm.  This is a little reminder to adjust my caffeine consumption but also to start thinking seriously and proactively about my heart health.

I do try to exercise regularly, reminding myself that bike rides and hikes are supposed to be “enjoyable” and good for me.  I also attempt to eat heart healthy foods and to eschew saturated fats whenever possible, though this can sometimes prove difficult as I have a torrid love affair with cheeseburgers.

Lately I’ve been hearing (and reading) a lot about the nutritional supplement coenzyme Q10 or CoQ10.  Numerous studies have shown that CoQ10 may be able to strengthen the heart muscle and enhance the immune system as well as provide the body with extra energy.  Additionally, new research suggests that CoQ10 therapy can help some effects of Parkinson’s and Huntington’s diseases, and possibly help to protect against dopamine depletion as well.

So now I’m adding another supplement to my regime of multivitamins, exercising and eating (relatively) well.  I feel stronger already.

Now.  Where did I put my bicycle?

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Would you like to learn more about the heart health benefits of CoQ10?  Click here.  And be sure to purchase Solanova’s highly absorbable Q-Gel® CoQ10 today for enhanced energy, endurance and immune system strength among many other benefits.

Reference: http://www.vitasearch.com/get-clp-summary/38358“Combination therapy with coenzyme Q10 and creatine produces additive neuroprotective effects in models of Parkinson’s and Huntington’s diseases,” Yang L, Calingasan NY, et al, J Neurochem, 2009 June; 109(5): 1427-39. (Address: Department of Neurology and Neuroscience, Weill Medical College of Cornell University, New York-Presbyterian Hospital, New York, New York 10021, USA).

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Take a Pole

Wednesday, July 8th, 2009

Only a few short years ago (okay 25-30, but who’s counting?) I didn’t have to worry so much about what I ate, how much I exercised or my overall health, for that matter.  It was lovely.  When I wanted a sundae, by golly, I ate one.  When I felt like doing something active, I’d hop on my bike and take a ride downtown.  Or I’d walk to our neighborhood swimming pool.  In college, I’d usually hike through my large campus to get to the library or the lecture hall.  In essence, I lived my life in an active way, which is more than I can say for my present condition.  And what’s more, exercise was so programmed into my every day lifestyle that I didn’t have to give it much thought.  To paraphrase Nike’s slogan, I didn’t lament about it, I just did it.

Nowadays, everyone is so busy, rushing around, making appointments, slaving over hot computers and commuting long hours.  How, you might ask, can you possibly integrate those long lost, carefree days of swimming, biking, hiking, dance lessons, little league practice et al., into the hectic lifestyle of a grown person trying to navigate a crazy work/family schedule in 2009?

Well.  It ain’t easy.

But wait.  I take that back.  It may be easier than you think.  There are all kinds of interesting ways to fuse fun and working out.  For example, if you need a little stress reduction but have zero time to spare, perhaps check out a yoga class early in the morning.  Many studios allow you to drop in, and depending on the class, it may concentrate more on strengthening than sweating, which would allow you to roll from downward facing dog straight to your desk, feeling strong, relaxed and already done with you workout.

Embrace your inner dancing queen.  Take a ballroom class or make a night out of salsa dancing.  Single?  Join a hiking group in your area.  Not only will you get a good workout, but you can meet people too.  New in town?  Sign up for a softball team through your local recreation center.  The more you can mix your social time with activities that are fun and beneficial, the sooner you can indulge in those sundaes without guilt.

Pole dancing anyone?

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Want to discover a healthier lifestyle?  Check out our health concerns pages.  Still having problems finding extra energy?  Try our Q-Gel ® CoQ10 product. Our Q-Gel is a powerful, natural compound that can strengthen the heart, increase energy, slow the aging process and fortify the immune system.  Give yourself the energy to enjoy life!

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