Help for a Healthy Heart
Dr. Steve Windley - December 23, 2015
Heart disease and cancer continue to be the top causes of death, in spite years of research and billions of dollars spent on medications for treatment. The search for treatment of heart disease has led to vast changes in diet such as substituting margarine for butter and saying “no” to red meat. Now we find that such advice probably made the situation worse. The low fat craze of the 80s and 90s further drove us toward more trouble rather than better health.

Patients are ready for better health. I am thrilled to see clients researching and learning about diet, exercise, and nutritional supplements to help strengthen the heart. 
CoQ10 and Magnesium
There are several nutrients that are useful to help or prevent cardiovascular disease. Two that are commonly touted to help strengthen heart cells are CoQ10 and magnesium. Magnesium is used in over 300 different functions in the body. CoQ10 is needed for cells to make energy and is depleted by many medications, including cholesterol medications.
Cholesterol Treatment
Many patients ask about cholesterol treatment, often because they cannot tolerate the medication prescribed for their cholesterol levels. In addition to dietary advice, especially decreasing sugar in the diet, Integrative Medicine uses red yeast rice to help lower cholesterol and control dangerous inflammation in the body.  
B Vitamin Deficiency
Another concern with heart disease is B vitamin deficiency. Years ago, this was described as beriberi (B1 deficiency) and pellagra (B3 deficiency). Though some of the B vitamin deficiency is corrected by the food we eat, this food is not always nutritious. There are many B vitamins available. But to avoid B deficiency with regard to the heart and fatigue, I suggest a food-based B vitamin supplement.  
Chelation Therapy
Schneck’s Integrative Medicine Center participated in a research study with the National Institute of Health to test chelation therapy. Chelation is the treatment of heavy metals in the body. The study showed benefit of chelation therapy for those with heart disease, especially diabetics. Chelation therapy is another tool offered at Schneck to help promote cardiovascular health.
New Testing Available at Schneck Integrative Medicine!
There are many other supplements that may offer benefit for those with heart disease or for those wanting to prevent heart disease. To better decide if you may benefit from extra nutritional supplement therapy, Integrative Medicine uses a simple, noninvasive test called Heart Rate Variability (HRV). HRV is a test performed in the office that monitors the beat of the heart while laying down and standing, typically over about a five-minute period. The test is easy to perform, and provides immediate feedback to help determine the best treatment options. Many research studies document the efficacy of HRV as a predictor of heart disease1,2 3,4. Now this test is offered at Schneck Integrative Medicine to help treat fatigue and prevent heart disease.  
1Kotecha D, New G, Flather MD, Eccleston D, Pepper J, Krum H   Five-minute heart rate variability can predict obstructive angiographic coronary disease.  1Heart. 2012 Mar;98(5):395-401. doi: 10.1136/heartjnl-2011-300033. Epub 2011 Nov 25.
2Lanza GA1, Sgueglia GA, Cianflone D, Rebuzzi AG, Angeloni G, Sestito A, Infusino F, Crea F, Maseri A; SPAI (Stratificazione Prognostica dell'Angina Instabile) Investigators. Relation of heart rate variability to serum levels of C-reactive protein in patients with unstable angina pectoris. Am J Cardiol. 2006 Jun 15;97(12):1702-6. Epub 2006 Apr 21.
3La Rovere MT1, Pinna GD, Maestri R, Mortara A, Capomolla S, Febo O, Ferrari R, Franchini M, Gnemmi M, Opasich C, Riccardi PG, Traversi E, Cobelli F. Short-term heart rate variability strongly predicts sudden cardiac death in chronic heart failure patients. Circulation. 2003 Feb 4;107(4):565-70.
4Nolan J1, Batin PD, Andrews R, Lindsay SJ, Brooksby P, Mullen M, Baig W, Flapan AD, Cowley A, Prescott RJ, Neilson JM, Fox KA. Prospective study of heart rate variability and mortality in chronic heart failure: results of the United Kingdom heart failure evaluation and assessment of risk trial (UK-heart). Circulation. 1998 Oct 13;98(15):1510-6.