|Taking your Blood Pressure Herbs Diet Minerals|
Sodium - Hypertension
and High Blood Pressure
Potassium to Improve
Magnesium to Prevent
Calcium, to prevent,
high blood pressure
and heart disease
and Heart Attacks
Diuretic Drugs and Heart Attacks
Thiazide diuretic drugs have side effects like heart arrhythmias. They force the kidneys to work harder, and may exacerbate the diabetic condition, forcing excretion of potassium and magnesium.
Every part of the body has a relationship with every other part. An intimate relationship exists between the kidneys and the heart. The average heart beats seventy-two times per minute and the average kidney beats thirty-six times per minute. You don’t have to be a genius to figure out that both kidneys equal the heart in beats per minute. There is a balance that is maintained between these organs. Potassium loss can lead to heart arrhythmias, or irregular heart rhythms. As the kidneys work harder the heart has to work harder, which may weaken the heart in the long run – especially if it is enlarged because of hypertension. This heart-kidney relationship is a component of Chinese medicine; the potassium wasting connection is seen in conventional medicine.
Dr. Julian Whitaker discusses the dangers of diuretic drugs in his newsletter Health and Healing, Vol. 6, No. 6 1996. He points out that diuretic drugs cause the elimination of vital minerals, known as mineral wasting. Some of the very minerals we will be discussing to lower blood pressure are those that are eliminated. They are calcium, magnesium, potassium, sodium, chloride, zinc and iodide. Even sodium is needed to reduce blood pressure; you just need the right source, certainly not commercial salt and processed foods. If you are diabetic, then mineral wasting is already a condition and these drugs compound the problem.
The loss of vital minerals can lead to hypertension, coronary artery spasms, stroke, irregular heart rhythms, and even heart attack. Diuretics are taken by twenty percent of all people over the age of 65. In this age group, diuretics have more adverse side effects than any other prescription drug. Mineral wasting from diuretics increases the death rate, as some large-scale studies have shown.195 In the moment of a heart attack, the body senses danger and floods the cells with the “flight or fight” hormone, which is epinephrine (adrenaline). This hormone constricts blood vessels, increases heart rate, and can put strain on an already enlarged heart, which can be caused by high blood pressure. Epinephrine also causes a decrease in potassium, and thus increases the risk of heart arrhythmia.196 If you want to stop using these drugs work with your doctor; do not change your dose or discontinue on your own.
There are natural alternatives to drugs available in any health food store. Find a holistic doctor or a clinical nutritionist who can make appropriate recommendations for your specific needs. One natural yet often overlooked potent diuretic is water. Drink up to four quarts a day if you can. This will give you an increase in kidney function the natural way. If you have congestive heart disease or kidney dysfunction, check with your physician.
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