By Amit Deshpande
New Delhi, Jun 9 (IANSlife): Heart issues are the leading cause of death across the globe affecting more than 17.9 million lives every year. Heart health is the most important in the human body and we don't need studies to prove it. Your brain and heart pretty much shape the entire body and its functions. Conditions like stroke and hypertension arise due to mental and physical issues in the body. Yes, stress is also a leading factor in such matters. Do you think your everyday diet provides enough for your heart? If you are living in an urban environment, nothing you consume is 100 per cent pure. "Adulterated" is a small word, your food items contain the unhealthiest substances if not washed properly. This creates a huge deficiency of essential nutrients in the body. And, supplements foster the bridging of this nutritional gap. Yes, people are still doubtful about their advantages and very few of us take them seriously.
Supplements are readily available and do not even need a prescription at times, but there are better ways of taking this path. Consult an expert, don't be one! Our busy schedules have no space for a nutrition-rich diet and we have become too comfortable with the sedentary lifestyle. Junk food, an imbalanced sleep routine, mental stress (cheers to hours and hours on social media platforms), and ignorance of health are significant factors that harm our heart health. However, we can fulfil the nutrition quota of our body and make our hearts happy and healthy with these seven supplements:
Omega 3 Fatty Acids
These supplements work miraculously in lowering triglycerides (the most common type of fats in the body), inflammation, stroke, and other heart conditions. Food items like walnuts, chia seeds, fish, flaxseed oil, and canola oil are rich sources of Omega 3 Fatty Acids. One must work hard to keep up with a routine to add these items in adequate amounts if not possible via diet, taking the Omega 3 Fatty Acids capsules is a great option. It aids in the maintenance of cardiovascular functioning and the regulation of cholesterol levels while reducing plaque buildup in the arteries.
According to a study, magnesium lowers blood pressure by 12 points. It is one of the 3 micro-minerals (along with calcium and zinc) responsible for around 300 biochemical reactions in the body. Magnesium deficiency can lead to muscle contractions, cramps, seizures, abnormal heart rhythms, personality changes, and coronary spasms. Cashew nuts, almonds, whole grains, legumes, seeds, and dairy products are some of the rich sources of magnesium. Managing them can be challenging; hence, magnesium supplements will do the job better.
Cod Liver Oil
This fish oil supplement is famous for its numerous benefits to the human body. Rich in antioxidants, healthy fats and minerals, cod liver oil can help reduce risk factors for heart diseases. The supplement can contribute a great deal to decreasing inflammation and reducing liver fat. It is also said that cod liver oil is excellent in the development and maintenance of healthy bones and teeth. These are often suggested by healthcare providers and that is the right method to consume them. Do not go for supplements without a prescription or doctor's recommendations.
Folate (folic acid)
It is said that folic acid (vitamin B) has been shown to lower the risk of heart attack and stroke in many people. Vegetables, beans, and citrus fruits are terrific sources of folate. The supplement is naturally present in many food items however in the form of a capsule or others it can be a part of your routine. If you are already on some medications, treatments or therapies, folic acid intake cannot be effective. You better have a word with an expert before beginning the dosage.
Grape Seed Extract
If you are diagnosed with hypertension, grape seed extract is just the right thing to include in your routine. It is full of antioxidants and lowers blood pressure. According to a study, around 100mg-800mg of grape seed extract every day for 8-16 weeks can help maintain blood pressure if you have symptoms or are suffering from pre hypertension.
Scurvy, beriberi, pellagra, and rickets are some of the classic examples of vitamin deficiencies. While malnutrition is a silent culprit in developing countries, multivitamin supplements can make a big difference. A meal consisting of plenty of fruits, vegetables, whole grains, protein and more is good but at times not enough. For a person suffering from chronic conditions like cardiovascular diseases, it is already late to consider essential nutrition; however, you can begin consuming these supplements from an early age to avoid trouble.
People with high blood pressure have a dire need for calming food items. While these are not always sufficient, supplements comprising Ashwagandha calm the brain, reduce swelling, lower blood pressure and help alter the immune system. Ashwagandha is used for ages now and works fantastically in reducing physical and mental stress of any kind. These days, ashwagandha has become a prime tea variant among premium beverages as well. One can include it in many ways to improve heart health.
(Dr Amit Deshpande, Founder & Director, Activist)