Cholesterol and
Heart Disease

Salt, High Blood Pressure
and Hypertension

Sugar, High Blood Pressure
and Hypertension

Trans Fatty Acids and
Heart Disease

High Triglycerides =
High Cholesterol

Heart Disease,
Good Fats and Harmful Fats

Free Radicals and
Heart Disease

Food Cautions for
Heart Disease

Fiber – A Key to Lowering

Eat more, eat less
Diet, Digestion and

Alkaline Diet to Prevent
Heart Disease and

Food Cautions for Heart Disease

meditation for health

Let’s look at some foods that would be better to reduce or avoid. Consuming cooked animal protein creates an acidic condition in your body, which does not form in the same way when the animal protein you consume is raw. This robs your body and bones of calcium, magnesium, and potassium, which are all vital to reduce blood pressure. Meat chelates copper out of the body. Copper is needed to keep your capillaries strong and flexible, to prevent a stroke or an aneurysm. Nonorganic meat contains hormones, pesticide and drug residues that can damage your health.

Diabetics should keep cooked animal protein to about 15% or less of the diet because elevated blood sugar levels can lead to glycated end products (AGE’s). AGE’s, abnormal complexes, contribute to degenerative vascular disease such as atherosclerosis, damaging blood lipids, and injuring arterial walls. This decreases the elasticity of blood vessels, contributes to high blood pressure, and overworks the heart. AGEs, the result of glycosylation, which is the prolonged exposure of amino acids (components of proteins) to high blood sugar levels.

Free radicals can seriously damage your cells over time. You should stay away from foods that create free radicals in the body, such as hydrogenated and partially hydrogenated oils in commercial peanut butter, margarine, mayonnaise, and many baked goods. Free radicals are created in the body from chemical processing, artificial ingredients, mineral deficiencies, inflammatory markers, and homocysteine. We will later discuss the role of homocysteine and early onset of cardiovascular disease due to the free radicals it creates. Try to avoid processed foods, artificial flavors, colors and other artificial ingredients.

An obvious measure to improve your health is to quit smoking. The negative effects of smoking on cardiovascular disease are well known.

Try to avoid drinking alcohol. Contrary to what you have heard about the positive benefits of alcohol, one drink a day can destroy vitamin B6, B12, and folic acid. These vitamins are all needed to neutralize homocysteine, which can cause heart attacks. Some research has shown a negative relationship between alcohol consumption and homocysteine. Alcohol consumption increases the risk for eye336 and nerve damage337 in diabetics.

If you are taking MAO Inhibitors, a class of anti-depressant drugs, avoid fermented products, because they can cause your blood pressure to skyrocket. In general it is advisable to reduce or avoid foods containing cholesterol although we will also discuss the value of eating healthy foods that contain fat and cholesterol. Sodium, commercial salt and refined sugar can contribute to high blood pressure.

Research at Duke University demonstrated that 4 to 5 cups of coffee in the morning elevate blood pressure and stress hormones such as epinephrine (adrenaline), and norepinephrine (noradrenaline). Another study conducted by Duke University Medical Center demonstrated that caffeine increased the levels of free epinephrine excreted during the workday and the evening by 32%.338 Caffeine amplified the increases in blood pressure and heart rate associated with higher levels of selfreported stress.339 This can lead to heart disease or stroke, because these hormones put your mind/body under stress and promote free radical damage in your body. Free radicals etch chinks in blood vessels, cholesterol is used to patch up the damage, and this in turn can clog arteries. Stress causes the production of excessive adrenaline, which stimulates the sympathetic nervous system, fueling the fight or flight response. The liver responds by releasing glucose rapidly into the blood stream to increase or normalize blood sugar. This type of biochemistry keeps you under constant stress. High blood sugar levels increase insulin, triglycerides, and cholesterol levels, which increase your cardiovascular risk.

Coffee has been shown to increase homocysteine. A cross-sectional study investigated the extent to which coffee, tea, and alcohol consumption, physical activity, and smoking were associated with nonfasting total plasma homocysteine concentrations in a random sample of 3,025 Dutch adults aged 20-65 years from a population-based cohort examined in 1993-1996 (n = 19,066). The lifestyle factors most strongly associated with plasma total homocysteine level were smoking (positive), alcohol drinking (negative), and coffee consumption (positive).340 Even eight hours after caffeine consumption, one-quarter of the amount consumed remains in your body.

The relationship between blood sugar imbalances and high blood pressure can be improved by healthy adrenal function. Coffee interferes with this process and it robs you of B-vitamins, which are vital to the function of the adrenal glands for energy production, digestion, emotional balance, and so much more. Coffee is a loan shark – the gain of an immediate burst of energy is offset later by greater energy depletion. Herbs like gotu kola, licorice root, and ginseng strengthen the adrenals as do B vitamins and vitamin C. Since licorice may increase blood pressure, it may not be advisable to be used by hypertension patients. Check with your health care provider to be sure.

Coffee and alcohol deplete thiamin and vitamin B1, leading to anxiety and other nervous disorders. Foods with empty calories – junk food, such as cola and cookies – can also lead to thiamin deficiency. Thiamin is vital for proper heart functioning.

Excess sugar, beyond what you need for energy, is converted to triglycerides and cholesterol in the liver. An example of how detrimental this is was demonstrated in a study published in the Journal of Orthomolecular Medicine. The study showed that high sugar intake may be the most important dietary risk factor for heart disease in women. It is very detrimental for men as well, however animal fat can put a man more at risk for cardiovascular disease. LDLs, low-density lipoproteins, carry triglycerides and cholesterol from the liver to other areas of the body. High levels of LDL are associated with atherosclerosis, leading to occluded arteries, stroke, heart attacks, and hypertension.

If you constantly crave sweetness, try sucking or chewing on fennel seeds every hour. After chewing just swallow them. Use the whole plain herb, not the candy coated version. Fennel seeds can help pacify your craving for sweet tastes. Sugar cravings can be the result of the loss of emotional sweetness in your life. The MariEl healing system calls blood sugar imbalances and cravings the “if-only situation.” “If only that relationship had worked out,” life would be better. MariEl is a hands-on energy healing system that re-patterns painful emotions by balancing the flow of energy in your body. We discussed a MariEl healing exercise in Chapter Seven. You may want to find an energy healer who can work with emotions related to the loss of sweetness in your life.

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