Taking Control of Your Health – The Stern Chiropractic Newsletter
Cholesterol and Heart health
My business grows primarily by personal referrals from my satisfied patients and as the sign says on my front counter, “The Greatest Compliment Our Patients Can Give is the Referral of Their Friends and Loved Ones. Thank You For Your Trust.” This month, I would like to thank the following people for their trust: Doug Reed, Bill Phan, Paula Comm, Anna Bryaner, Tim Wyatt, & Jodi Berke.
I am looking for local charities to team-up-with and help their cause. If you have any suggestions, please let me know.
Topic of the Month : Cholesterol and Heart health
Cholesterol is a long-chain fatty acid produced by your liver. It is a precursor to steroid hormones and is essential for life. Cholesterol is normally produced in sufficient quantity by your liver, hence additional amount taken in via your diet sets off signals for your liver to slow down production. If you consume too much saturated fat and you do not exercise, you increase your risk of elevating your blood cholesterol levels. The long-term effects of high cholesterol include higher risk of heart disease and associated problems. Total cholesterol levels are only a small part of the picture. Another aspect that needs to be considered is the LDL (low density lipoprotein) and HDL (high density lipoprotein) levels and the LDL to HDL ratio. Lipoproteins transport cholesterol in the blood stream. LDL’s (bad cholesterol) carry cholesterol & triglycerides from the liver to the cells of the body. HDL’s (good cholesterol) returns cholesterol back to the liver to be broken down. Other aspects to consider include Apo-lipoprotein (a) (Lp(a)) and Homocysteine levels (treated only with vitamin B supplementation). Causes of high cholesterol levels include: Poor diet, sedentary lifestyle (lack of cardiovascular exercise), and heredity. The U of C Berkeley Wellness Letter (8/01) provides the following main changes to the National Cholesterol Guidelines which include the following:
1. Everyone age 20 or older should have a lipid panel blood test performed to measure LDL, HDL & Triglyceride levels.
2. Total cholesterol levels below 200 are desirable. Levels above 240 are considered High. Optimal levels of LDL are below 130 unless you are at high risk for a heart attack, in which case the new goal is 100. The minimum level for HDL has been raised from 35 to 40.
3. The main risk factors for heart disease include: Age, smoking, high total and/or LDL cholesterol, low HDL, high blood pressure, family history or premature heart disease, and obesity.
4. Diabetes is now singled out as so potent a risk factor for heart disease that, by itself, puts one in the highest-risk category, along with people who already have heart disease.
5. One new risk factor is called “metabolic syndrome,” which is largely related to obesity and inactivity. You qualify if you have three or more of the following: abdominal obesity (a waist more than 40 inches for a man, 35 for a woman); low HDL (below 40 for men, 50 for women); fasting triglycerides of 150 or more; elevated blood pressure; and fasting glucose of 110 or more.
The following are dietary and lifestyle recommendations taken from The Encyclopedia of Natural Medicine:
1. Eat less saturated fat and cholesterol by reducing or eliminating the amount of animal products in the diet.
2. Eat more fiber-rich foods (fruits, vegetables, grains, and legumes).
3. Increase essential fatty acid intake (when doing so, you need to increase your anti-oxidant intake, especially vitamin E, to handle the byproducts of the fatty acid break-down)
4. Natural compounds that can effectively improve cholesterol and triglyceride levels include niacin, garlic, gugulipids and pantethine (vitamin B5).
5. Lose weight if necessary.
6. Get regular aerobic exercise
7. Don’t smoke
NOTE: Lowering Cholesterol does not reduce the risk of morbidity or mortality from heart attack or stroke per the research. Homocystine is what causes arterial plaquing and the only thing that will address homocystine is Vitamin B. Healthy lifestyle including REGULAR CHIROPRACTIC CARE, healthy diet, proper supplementation, exercise, restorative rest and proper stress management tools is the recipe for good heart health.
Products of the Month : LIPITROL
This natural supplement uses Chromium, Inositol (Niacin), & Gugulipids to improve your blood lipid profile. On a personal note: I have a hereditary cholesterol problem and I was able to cut my Zocor (cholesterol lowering medication) intake in ½ without any change in my lipid profile by using this product. By reducing my Zocor intake, I have reduced the toxic load on my liver and substantially decreased by prescription medication costs.
I hope this information helps you take control of your health and your life! If you have any questions, feedback or have any suggestions for future topics, please call or email me.
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Don’t forget the importance of maintaining your health with regular chiropractic and acupuncture care.
Gregg Stern, D.C., FICPA