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Time to spring clean the arteries


Time to spring clean the arteries

Cholesterol and blood pressure problems have become the curse of the generation. TRUDY KITHER suggests diet and the right supplements can give the arteries a clean and make a big difference to life quality and quantity.

Clogged arteries are a problem involving the inside layer called the endothelial layer. If there is a dysfunction with this layer, you will also have inflammation, scar tissue, cholesterol, and calcium buildup.

The best way to check is the coronary artery calcium score with a CT scan.  It is much more valuable than a cholesterol test because it measures the calcium buildup in your arteries, one of the best predictors of mortality.

Your score should be zero, but sometimes it can be up around 100, 200, 500, or more.  If you find that yours is high, you should be applying some of the following points and re-testing in a couple of months.

Make sure insulin levels are normal.

You can do this by dropping your carbohydrate intake and doing intermittent fasting.   By maintaining a low-carb eating regime (or even ketogenic), you will lower your insulin.  High insulin levels cause inflammation and thickening of your arteries, possibly even clots, and AGE (Advanced Glycated End-products).  Inside the artery, the proteins become damaged and unusable.  It can happen from consuming too many carbs and Omega 6s.  Therefore, lowering insulin by low-carb/keto eating and intermittent fasting are the most important things you can do. Without doing these, the following points won’t work.

Consume foods high in Vitamin K2.

They help to keep the calcium out of your arteries. Vitamin K2 is high in eggs (especially the yolk), grass-fed butter, grass-fed beef, Natto (fermented soybeans), sauerkraut, and a little bit of hard and soft cheese.

Tocotrienols (not technically a food) are potent antioxidants.

Tocotrienols are different from tocopherols, the vitamin E complex and are 50 times stronger.  By consuming green, leafy vegetables, you will get a good amount of vitamin E, which is highly recommended.

However, if you have artery damage, it is essential to take the tocotrienols because their antioxidant activity is so powerful.  They can stop your artery damage from getting any worse as they prevent oxidation and free radical damage.

Decrease the Omega 6 fatty acids from your diet.

Omega 6 oils are in corn, soy, cottonseed, and canola.  Replace with Omega 3 fatty acids.  You can find Omega 3 fats in salmon, fatty fish, cod liver oil, walnuts (which has a precursor to Omega 3).  If you eat meat, always ensure it is grass-fed, as it contains higher amounts of Omega 3 fatty acids.

Check potassium levels.

To decrease the arteries’ stiffness, which can then lead to high blood pressure, you need to make sure you have enough potassium in your diet.

Every adult needs 4700mg of potassium a day, which equates to one large green, leafy salad, of 6-8 cups.  Potassium keeps the arteries nice and soft.  Vitamin D is also essential for keeping your blood pressure low and supports Endothelial dysfunction.

It is almost impossible to get high amounts of vitamin D from your food.  It is better to get the high amounts you will need from either the sun or a high-quality supplement.  You will need at least 10,000 IU’s or more to drop blood pressure.

The good thing is, most times you will be able to see your blood pressure come down when you take it. The combination of potassium and vitamin D is a powerful remedy for keeping arteries soft.

Another good remedy for blood pressure is pomegranate.

Take it as a supplement or put the seeds in your salads as it has excellent properties to lower blood pressure.

Focusing on these remedies will help to keep arteries clean and working as well as possible.  Consult your registered naturopath to ensure these recommended treatments are right for you.

 Trudy Kither is a naturopath and owner of Nature’s Temple. Visit

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