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Cardiovascular Disease: How I lowered my blood pressure from 170

by Warren Cargal, L. Ac.

 

By Warren L. Cargal, L. Ac.

 

 

No, I did not take any hypertensive medications, however I did consider them. Let me give you a little personal background first and then I will tell you how I did it.

 

I had been under a lot of stress for 2 years. I am the primary care giver for my mother whose health is not well. In addition I have a young son who is a live wire and I am running a busy acupuncture clinic. Stress release catecholamines, which are chemicals that prepare the body for physical activity and can increase blood pressures. Long term stress can have a deregulating effect on blood pressure, lipids and blood sugars.

 

My lifestyle was pretty good (I thought). I was working out 3 times a week, I only had two cups of coffee in the morning and I consumed red meat about 2-3 times/week and I did not consume junk food.

 

I started getting frequent right temporal headaches coupled with hypotensive dizziness when I would stand up. It was at this point I decided take my blood pressure and what a shock: 170/100

 

At that point I decided I needed to make some substantial changes in my lifestyle or I was going to end up stroking myself out. I did an online search at http://www.drugs.com looking at the hypertensive medication and found out that the two categories of hypertensive medications (ACE inhibitors and beta blockers) have there own set of problems.

 

The most common side effects of ACE inhibitors such as Zestril, Prinivil are cough, elevated blood potassium levels, low blood pressure, dizziness, headache, drowsiness, weakness, abnormal taste (metallic or salty taste), and rash. It may take up to a month for coughing to subside, and if one ACE inhibitor causes cough it is likely that the others will too. The most serious, but rare, side effects of ACE inhibitors are kidney failure, allergic reactions, a decrease in white blood cells, and swelling of tissues (angioedema).

 

The most common side effects of beta blockers such as Sectral, Tenormin, Zebeta, Lopressor, Toprol include:

 

  •  vomiting;
  • decreased sex drive, impotence, or difficulty having an orgasm;
  • sleep problems (insomnia);
  • tired feeling; or
  • anxiety, nervousness

 

More serious side effects include:

  • slow or uneven heartbeats;
  • feeling light-headed, fainting;
  • feeling short of breath, even with mild exertion;
  • swelling of your ankles or feet;
  • nausea, stomach pain, low fever, loss of appetite, dark urine, clay-colored stools, jaundice (yellowing of the skin or eyes);
  • depression; or
  • cold feeling in your hands and feet.

 

I decided to see if I could first resolve this on my own before having to resort to medications. With that said I do want to stress that sometimes it is more important to get the blood pressure down quickly, in which case it is necessary to take the prescription medications. Once the blood pressure is lower, then you can implement the life style changes and concurrently begin to introduce the supplements.

 

The protocol that I worked out for myself and some of the underlying rational for the selections follows:

 

My protocol:

 

  1. I gave up coffee and substituted green tea.
  2. Sea Ace by Health Concerns 1 tab 2x/day
  3. Hawthorn Extract by Pure  2 tabs 2x/day
  4. Best Blood Pressure Support by Doctor’s Best 2 tab 2x/day
  5. CoQ10 by Life Extension 1 tab 2x/dsy
  6. Sytrinol by Pure 2 tabs 2x/day
  7. three stalks of celery/day and more potassium rich foods (bananas)
  8. baby aspirin 1x/day
  9. In the evening I stopped snacking after dinner
  10. In addition to exercising I started yoga twice/week.

 

Rational:

 

Sea Ace is a patented combination of eight peptides from fish that have been ultra purified and shown to lower blood pressure in humans and in laboratory experiments. Over 40 food proteins were studied by our partners, who found that peptides from select species of bonito fish had the strongest blood pressure lowering effects.

 

The results are attributed to lowering ACE, a key enzyme that controls blood pressure. Human clinical trials have been conducted involving over 130 subjects. The average drop noticed was 10.2mmHg in systolic blood pressure (SBP), and 7mmHg in diastolic blood pressure (DBP) at a dose of 1.5g per day, found in three capsules of Sea Ace.

 

Sytrinol is a patented formula derived from citrus and palm fruit extracts. It is a combination of citrus flavonoids and palm-sourced tocotrienols that can exert potent antioxidant effects.

 

The polymethoxylated flavones (PMFs) are a group of compounds that are derived from the peels of citrus fruits. These are the predominant flavonoids found in Sytrinol . The two most common are tangeretin and nobiletin. These compounds, on their own or in combination with other nutrients, have an ability to affect the metabolism of lipids.

 

The second major component of Sytrinol is a class of compounds known as tocotrienols. Tocotrienols are fat-soluble vitamins related to the family of tocopherols, derivatives of vitamin E. They are potent free radical scavengers that may have the ability to modify certain cardiovascular risk factors.*

 

Celery contains active compounds called pthalides, which can help relax the muscles around arteries and allow those vessels to dilate. With more space inside the arteries, the blood can flow at a lower pressure. Pthalides also reduce stress hormones, one of whose effects is to cause blood vessels to constrict. Research was done at Chicago Medical Center where a quarter of a pound of celery was ingested by one man every day for a week and his blood pressure dropped from 158/96 to 118/82.

 

Hawthorne (Crataegus Oxycanthus): Its antihypertensive effect occurs through multiple pharmacologic actions including the diliation of coronary arteries, inhibition of angiotensin converting enzyme, an improvement in myocardial metabolism and a mild diuretic action.

 

Aging Humans suffer a large decline in coenzyme Q10 synthesis that correlates with increased risks of multiple degenerative diseases. Additional a universal pathological effect of aging on humans is mitochondrial energy depletion which manifest as fatigue. The primary mechanism by which CoQ10 protects against age-related degeneration is helping to maintain mitochondrial energy output.

 

 



 

 

 

This article was published on Monday January 07, 2008.
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