Monday, January 31, 2011

The Healthier Heart Formula

Did you ever notice how we use the heart to describe almost everything about ourselves? It’s built into the way we talk. If you’re close to someone they’re “near to your heart.” You can want something “with all your heart.” If you say what you feel you “get to the heart of the matter.” When you’re happy and carefree you’re “young at heart,” and when you see something uplifting it “warms your heart.”
You can use it to paint a picture of almost anything good, happy and inspiring.
But it isn’t just an idea… in an important way, your heart really is what gives you vitality. It gives your brain the blood it needs so you can think clearly, it gives you stamina… It’s what gives you strength to perform at your best, and it gives you sexual performance…
Everything you think of as being youthful and vigorous depends on it.
The problem is that your heart weakens with age. And when it doesn’t pump as powerfully, you’ll feel less of that vital energy you need.
In a study conducted at Johns Hopkins, researchers found that each year as people age, the time it takes for their heart muscles to squeeze and relax grows longer by two to five percent.1
That means in just a few short years, your heart’s muscle power may slow down as much as 25 percent.

The good news is you can do something about it.
Let me start by telling you a little about how your heart works.
First, blood that’s low in oxygen enters the heart and gets pumped to the lungs. The oxygen-enriched blood then returns to the heart to get pumped out to your entire body.
What most people don’t know is that every time your heart pumps, a little blood gets left behind.
A young, strong heart will pump out 50 to 75% of the blood available, and 25 to 50% stays behind.
And the measure of your heart’s power – the ratio of how much goes out to how much is left behind – is your ejection fraction. If your ejection fraction gets below 50% you’re considered to have congestive heart failure.
But you can put the brakes on this effect of aging. You can improve your ejection fraction and make your heart more powerful.
Here’s what to do:
Get Enough CoQ10 – This is the single best nutrient for treating and preventing heart failure. I’ve used it on hundreds of patients to improve their ejection fraction.
Also, not only is CoQ10 the fuel used by the energy-producing center of every one of your cells, your body also uses it for heart muscle contraction.
The best source of CoQ10 is the organ meat of animals. But we don’t eat hearts, liver and kidneys too much in America.
Because of that, you’re probably going to need a CoQ10 supplement. The best kind of CoQ10 is the reduced form, ubiquinol. It’s 8 times more powerful than the regular CoQ10 you find in most stores. I recommend 50mg a day of the reduced form.
Get Enough Vitamin D – We now know that low vitamin D levels contribute to heart failure.
And a University of Michigan study published in the Journal of Cardiovascular Pharmacology found that higher vitamin D levels prevented myocytes – heart muscle cells – from becoming enlarged, which robs them of their power.2
The best source of vitamin D is sunshine. With about 20 minutes in the sunlight your skin can make as much as 10,000IU. But if you can’t be out in the sun, foods such as organic milk from grass-fed cows, wild-caught salmon and egg yolks are good choices.
A spoonful of cod liver oil will give you about 400IU.
A good-quality vitamin D supplement will also do the trick. I recommend 2,000IU daily, especially during winter months or if you live in a colder climate with less sunlight.
Get Enough Taurine – This is the heart’s most abundant free amino acid. Research has shown that it prevents arrhythmia (irregular heartbeats) by limiting an increase in the size of your myocytes. Those foods that give you vitamin D are also the best sources of taurine. But if you need to supplement, start with 500mg per day.
Get the Right Exercise – Let me say this as clearly as I can: long duration, medium intensity workouts wreck your body.
A Harvard Health Professionals Study backs me up on this. Researchers followed over 7,000 people. They found that the key to protecting your heart is exactly the opposite of long workouts like “cardio” exercises. It’s not endurance. It’s intensity that protects your heart. In fact, they proved that the more intense the exertion, the lower their risk of heart disease.3
The researchers showed that those who do short-duration, high-intensity workouts reduce their risk of heart disease by 100% more than those who practice aerobic exercise.4
And that’s not all. Another Harvard study compared vigorous and light exercise. Those who performed exercise that is more vigorous had a lower risk of death than those who performed less vigorous exercise.5
Enduring hours of drudgery only to increase your risk of disease doesn’t make sense. It isn’t natural, and it doesn’t work.

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