Minerals for the heart
The heart rhythm is dependant on the movement of minerals across the heart lining. The heart is trigged to beat by this movement. Arteries and veins are lined with muscle, which also responds to mineral treatments. Leg cramps can be giving you cues that your body lacks magnesium. And after an intense exercise, your heart muscles need to be nourished with whole foods and CQ10.
Women who supplement only with calcium or people who eat a standard American diet are typically deficient in magnesium. A standard American diet consists of high sugar, high-refined carbohydrates, low protein, and high fat.
Always supplement calcium with magnesium and use a 1:1 ratio of calcium and magnesium if you tend to have high blood pressure, restless leg syndrome, headaches or muscle cramps. Otherwise have a 1:2 ratio of magnesium to calcium. This means with 1500 mg of calcium per day, you should use 750-1500 mg magnesium on the same day.
Magnesium relaxes muscle cells and helps regulate heart rhythm. It does, however, tend to cause diarrhea, and some forms cause looser stools than others.
Which form of magnesium to use?
Constipation: If you don’t have a complete bowel movement daily use magnesium citrate which helps relax bowel spasms and is an osmotic laxative (see the section on constipation for more information). Magnesium citrate is a non-addictive and gentle laxative. To determine the level of magnesium citrate to take, start with 1/day with or without food. Then daily, increase by 1. Stop when stools are normal. For instance, 1-2 magnesium citrate 1-2X/day is a common dosage.
Regular bowel movements: If you tend to be regular or have loose stools, use magnesium glycinate or magnesium taurate.
Dosage of magnesium: anywhere from 100-1500mg/day depending on blood pressure.
Taurine is an amino acid normally made in the liver. Unlike most amino acids, which are hooked together to make proteins, taurine’s function is to shuttle minerals into the heart. It improves your body’s sensitivity to the minerals you obtain from diet or supplements.
Taurine is especially useful for people who use many medications, or who use medications that damage liver function (e.g. heart medicines including beta blockers and cholesterol medicines.)
It is also useful for those who have adrenal stress, malabsorption, excessive perspiration, or people who have eaten a poor diet all their lives, and currently experience inefficient mineral use.
Taurine dosage: 500-1000mg up to 3 times a day, based on blood pressure, cramping or muscle twitching.
CoQ10 is a molecule necessary for the production of energy in the body. The body has a series of molecules that shuffle electrons from one to the next (called the electron transport chain). This shuttle of electrons (electricity) is used to make energy for the body. The last molecule in this energy transfer is CoQ10. The molecule made for energy storage is called ATP. CoQ10 feeds the ATP producing molecule, which causes stores of bodily fuel to be built up.
Muscles require ATP to relax, not contract. This means muscles contract “for free”, but then need energy to relax again. This is why deceased people with rigor mortis become “stiff”. After death, energy production ceases, as does the relaxation of muscles.
CoQ10 supplies energy to the muscles to help them function.
Beta-blockers and some cholesterol lowering medication deplete the body of CoQ10, therefore depleting the body of energy.
Your heart medicines and cholesterol medicines may be harming your heart by depleting its energy! The very treatment you use to lower your blood pressure or cholesterol can be giving you cramps and robbing your heart of energy.
|Vitamin EThree very large studies found 40% heart disease risk reduction with supplements.||about 200 IU type ‘d’, not ‘dl’. MIXED ‘tocopherols’ best. Relaxes arteries. Always take in oil or fatty meal –AJCN: 1-2004]
|Antioxidant; protects blood fats; keeps cholesterol “happy”. Prevents blood sticking, clots and artery damage. Like vitamin C, keeps blood and cell fats non-toxic.Very important. Take during “fattiest” meal. Natural (d) type doubly effective –also consider: mixed “tocopherols” and possibly “mixed tocotrienols”. Consider starting with lower dose. IF on Coumadin (warfarin), aspirin and/or high fish oil, use lowest dose: while preventing clotting, you could promote excessive bleeding.
As with the heart-healthy omega-3 oils, E’s cardio benefits increase with time. The evidence for prevention is stronger than for E as a cure.
|Vitamin C—not Ester-C238 references in Am J Cl Nutr; June ’99.
Beneficial roles of very high doses in disease are probable but not well established.C, easy to take for granted, hard to underestimate!
|1/2 – 4 grams.
At or above lower dose in health, higher in illness.If prone to oxalate type kidney stones, stay below 1 g, drink sufficient water, consider vitamin B6, low salt, low protein and high calcium foods.
|Antioxidant. Works with and recycles vitamin E; Keeps blood vessels healthy; raises ‘good’ & lowers Lp(a) cholesterol; speeds up bowel, reduces length & severity of colds. Improves general health: point 2 in [31 Comments] and the Linus Pauling Institute.Anti-viral. At 4 ¢/g, best health bargain around. 99.9% of animals make their own in “mega” amounts as do all plants. We, monkeys and guinea pigs do not. Very high dose is remarkably safe: “..take as much as you like” [from the L. Pauling Institute’s Top Ten, May 2000]. Very important. Nature’s nitroglycerin, like arginine & vitamin E.|
|The B’s –No reported toxicity in doses mentioned.(B2), B6, B12 & folic acid will lower artery toxic homocysteine in anyone.Take as a multi and not individually unless there is a special reason.||B1 25-100 mg
B2 25-100 mg
B3 50-600 mg
B6 25-100 mg
B12 100 mcg+B9 = folic acid 800 – 2000 mcg
Pantothenic acid (B5) 25-200 mg
|They help digest fats and sugars, lower homocysteine (-best in higher than RDA amounts) and reduce plaque.
Very high dose plain B3 niacin (about 0.7g taken after each of meals) is by far the best & cheapest cholesterol “modifying” drug, raising HDL while lowering LDL, Lp(a), fibrinogen and triglycerides –must take with a daily multi. B3 is also good for your liver and brain.The B’s are needed for 100’s of processes in the body. Ultra high doses of some have anti-Alzheimer’s, schizophrenia & depression links.
The higher doses mentioned resemble Pauling’s. Very important. Very high B6 may help carpal tunnel problems.
|Calcium (see minerals, below) + Vitamin D, the sun shine vitamin (very important). I’d use calcium combined with magnesium.||Calcium 1.2 gr. + Vitamin D 1200 IU (BMJ; Nov. 28 ’98); up to 100 mcg = 4000 IU likely safe AJCN; Dec. ’01)||1.2g Ca + 800IU D prevent bone loss and fracture at age 84! (here’s your reference). Calcium is heart healthy: bone, boiled egg shell, oyster shell, dolomite, milk (may be) & soy, and green leaf or cabbage type veggie (which also have the bone-building vitamin K). D = extremely important: fish liver [oil], fatty fish, high-sun on skin; science ref’s: “D”-council & Oregon State.|
|Magnesium (for more, and for potassium** see minerals, below)||1/2 – 1 gr.||Crucial for heart function; it, and potassium** regulate heart beat. Mg is needed for 325 reactions, not least the lowering of toxic blood homocysteine. 90% of Mg is removed from refined grains and rice! Most Americans don’t get the RDA of about 0.4 gr. Very important and few side effects.|
|Selenium (see minerals, below)||200 mcg (max. 800 mcg)||Antioxidant, works with vitamins E and C. A lack causes heart disease, some virus diseases & cancer which are, in part, selenium deficiency diseases. Very important.|
|CoQ10 (CoenzymeQ10, or ubiquinone)||60 to 300 mg||Essential for heart & blood pressure; larger dose for serious heart trouble or cancer; vital when taking a “statin” drug. Body makes less when older (using most B vitamins and magnesium). Safe but expensive ($1/100mg). Doubly absorbed when chewed in oily food.|
|Vitamin F -with the F from Fat …
An old term that shouldn’t be lost.α-Linolenic; omega-3 (ω-3 or n-3) type oil.
Linoleic; omega-6 (ω-6 or n-6) type oil.
|Omega-3: 1 to 2 tea spoons flax/lin or fish, or 2 table spoons canola oil [like: colza, rape, raap, kool, mustard], or soy -only if you can’t find canola.Other types of omega-3 in fatty fish.
Most people get too much n-6.
|True vitamins: needed for heart-health. The only 2 fat types (“poly”-unsaturates) the body can not make itself.Omega-3 type alpha-linolenic is scarce in the Western food supply but key to heart, general and mental health. Fish oil works like a-linolenic, see: [Good Food] and point 1 in [31 Comments] and lowers triglycerides.
Omega-6 type linoleic (corn, sun, saff, soy, cotton) is rarely lacking and is often excessive in relation to n-3 linolenic. Probably the most common “vitamin overdose” in Western diets at 2x-3x the ISSFAL maximum for most people. The cancer-link keeps on popping up in the high omega-6 research.
*Minerals are complicated as there are many and it is possible to overdose. Intakes depend on the degree of food processing and amounts in the soil. Plants make vitamins but must mine their minerals -if not in the soil, it won’t be in the plant. Here’s some info about their roles –not necessarily as supplements- in health and disease.
Mineral needs are complicated because each person’s situation is unique while you or your health-advisor will never know which minerals were in the soil where your food was grown, how much was taken up, or by how much milling and cooking reduced their amount.
Each nutrient is important and wise supplementation with some minerals is a practical way to insure that you get the optimum amounts.
**POTASSIUM “It now appears quite possible that a lack of potassium in the coronary muscles may be the major cause of death from heart disease in humans ” [Adelle Davis, ’72]. 95% of potassium is inside cells, as opposed to sodium, and magnesium keeps it there. Because raw plant-based diets are high in potassium & low in sodium, well functioning kidneys remove potassium faster than sodium. Disposal of vegetable cook-water, high salt or low magnesium diets, sweating and most diuretics can cause fatal depletions of potassium and/or magnesium. References: 1.) irregular heart beat: JAMA; ’99-6-16; 2.) blood pressure: JAMA; ’97-5-28; 3.) stroke: NEJM;’87-1-29 [60% of risk at 4.3 vs. 2.4g/d]; 4.) review BMJ; ’01-9-1 [10 mmole = ~0.4 g].