January 10, 2018 | Author: Myrella Marie | Category: Atherosclerosis, Cholesterol, Nutrition, Saturated Fat, Cardiovascular Diseases
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Atherosclerosis (also known as arteriosclerotic vascular disease or ASVD) is the condition in which an artery wall thickens as the result of a build-up of fatty materials such as cholesterol. It is a syndrome affecting arterial blood vessels, a chronic inflammatory response in the walls of arteries, in large part due to the accumulation of macrophage white blood cells and promoted by low-density lipoproteins (plasma proteins that carry cholesterol and triglycerides) without adequate removal of fats and cholesterol from the macrophages by functional high density lipoproteins (HDL), (see apoA-1 Milano). It is commonly referred to as a hardening or furring of the arteries. It is caused by the formation of multiple plaques within the arteries. The recommended diet to help prevent, slow the progression of, and possibly even reverse atherosclerosis and heart disease is low in saturated fats, cholesterol, trans-fats, and processed foods, and high in whole foods. According to current medical research, the most important dietary actions you can take to reduce your risk of atherosclerosis and heart disease are: Consume a healthy foods diet high in:         

whole fruits, especially Concord grapes, cranberries, kiwifruit and grapefruit vegetables nuts, especially walnuts and almonds seeds, especially sesame, pumpkin, sunflower and flaxseeds legumes (all beans, peas and lentils) whole grains, especially oats olive oil cold-water fish

Fruits and Vegetables those who ate the most fruits and vegetables (an average of 23 ounces per day) had a 28% lower risk of ischemic stroke compared to those who ate the least (an average of 5 ounces a day). The benefits of eating fresh fruits were even higher. Those who consumed the most fruits had a 40% lower risk of stroke compared to those who ate the least.

Each additional daily portion of vegetables consumed conferred a 26% decrease in risk of coronary death. Although the healthier lifestyle more typical among those who eat fruit and vegetables may contribute to the effects seen in this meta-analysis, the authors concluded that the preponderance of the evidence presented supports the finding that eating more fruit and vegetables lowers risk of coronary heart disease. Oats Oats, via their high fiber content, are already known to help remove cholesterol from the digestive system that would otherwise end up in the bloodstream. Now, the latest research suggests they may have another cardio-protective mechanism. Antioxidant compounds unique to oats, called avenanthramides, help prevent free radicals from damaging LDL cholesterol, thus reducing the risk of cardiovascular disease.

Whole Grains Eating a serving of whole grains at least 6 times each week is a good idea, especially for postmenopausal women with high cholesterol, high blood pressure or other signs of cardiovascular disease (CAD).  

Slowed progression of atherosclerosis, the build-up of plaque that narrows the vessels through which blood flows, and Less progression in stenosis, the narrowing of the diameter of arterial passageways. Whole grains include whole wheat, breads, pasta, cereals and crackers made from whole wheat flour, brown rice,barley, oats, rye, spelt and quinoa. Refined grains include the wheat flour (also listed as unbleached wheat flour) used in the majority of commercially prepared breads, pasta, crackers, cookies, etc.

Soy Foods Soy foods such as tofu, tempeh, soy miso, and soymilk, should be eaten several times per week as a replacement for animal protein sources high in saturated fat such as dairy products and red meats. Cold Water Fish Cold water fish, such as salmon and cod, should be eaten as often as 4-5 times per week since they not only provide excellent protein, but are rich in omega-3 essential fatty acids. Legumes Legumes, which are rich in fiber, protein and minerals should also be dietary mainstays. Fat-free cooking is recommended. Add fats after food is removed from the heat for flavor. If you do choose to cook with fat, cook at the lowest temperature and for the shortest time possible. Extra virgin olive oil or grapeseed oil are the best choices as these oils are high in monounsaturated fats, the fats most resistant to damage when heated. Nuts While you may have become accustomed to thinking about nuts as too high in fat be part of a heart protective diet, this food group has been shown to lower risk of cardiovascular disease and heart attack-even in persons who are at higher risk of heart problems like individuals diagnosed with type 2 diabetes. Here are some of the study results on specific nuts and their heart-supporting properties. Walnuts Cardio-Protective through Numerous Mechanisms Nuts are another source of cardio-protective fats. Not only did the walnut diet significantly reduce total cholesterol (a drop that ranged from 4.4 to 7.4%) and LDL (bad) cholesterol (a drop ranging from 6.4 to 10%), but walnuts were also found to increase the elasticity of the

arteries by 64%, and to reduce levels of vascular cell adhesion molecules, a key player in the development of atherosclerosis (hardening of the arteries). the drop in cholesterol correlated with increases in blood levels of alpha-linolenic acid, a key essential fatty acid from which omega 3 fats can be derived, and gammatocopherol, a form of vitamin E. Walnuts are uniquely rich in both of these nutrients. Drink more tea Drinking tea may help lower the amount of LDL (bad) cholesterol in the blood    

Fish oil: Rich in omega-3 fatty acids, fish oil has been associated with favorable changes in various risk factors for atherosclerosis and heart disease in some, but not all, studies (1-2 grams three times per day is often used). Folic acid: 500-800 mcg per day to lower homocysteine levels. Selenium: 100-200 mcg per day. Vitamin C: Leading vitamin C researchers have begun to suggest that vitamin C may be important in preventing heart disease, but only up to 100-200 mg of intake per day. In a double-blind trial, supplementation with 250 mg of timedrelease vitamin C twice daily for three years resulted in a 15% reduction in the progression of atherosclerosis, compared with placebo. Many doctors suggest that people take vitamin C - often 1 gram per day - despite the fact that research does not yet support levels higher than 500 mg per day. Vitamin E: Vitamin E (400-800 IU per day to prevent oxidative damage to LDL cholesterol) may lower the risk of atherosclerosis and heart attacks, but current evidence from large, well-designed studies is conflicting.

Key herbs 

Garlic: Garlic has been shown to be an effective anti-atherosclerotic at 900 mg per day (standardized extract).

Other herbs that may be helpful   

Fenugreek: (18 grams per day of powder), garlic (600-900 mg per day), guggul (25 mg guggulsterone three times a day), psyllium (5-10 grams per day). Green tea (three cups per day [providing 240-320 mg of polyphenols]) has been shown to block oxidation of cholesterol. Garlic has been shown to decrease excessive platelet stickiness.

Dietary changes that may be helpful    

Meat and dairy: Reduce consumption of meat and dairy fat. Trans fatty acids: Avoid foods that contain trans fatty acids (margarine, partially hydrogenated vegetable oils). Alpha-linolenic acid: Opt for foods rich in alpha-linolenic acid (e.g., canola and flaxseed oils). Fiber: Certain fibers are linked to the reduction of cholesterol levels. They are found in oats, psyllium seeds, fruit (pectin), and beans (guar gum).

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Egg-yolks: High consumption of egg yolks may be able to induce atherosclerosis, independent of their action on serum cholesterol; therefore, people should reduce egg-yolk intake. Vegan diet: A vegan diet (i.e., no animal products) combined with exercise and stress reduction has been proven to reduce the incidence of atherosclerosis. (Note: people on a vegan diet need to be sure they are getting enough vitamin B12) Salt: Reduce salt consumption.

High fat foods that are bad for you. Saturated fats. Studies have shown that diets high in saturated fats increase the risk of hart disease. They also increase the level of LDL (bad) cholesterol in your blood. Products that are high in saturated fats are. - Butter - Ice cream (contains milkfat) - Cheese - Chicken fat - Meat fat - Palm oil - Coconut oil - Beef - Lamb - Pork - Veal A lot of animal products contain saturated fats and in some cases foods from plants. Trans fats. Just like saturated fats there is a relationship between trans fats and bad cholesterol level. Products that contain trans fats are. - Some margarines - Cookies - Crackers - Snack foods - Shortening - Doughnuts - Cake - Frozen foods - Potato chips - Candy

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