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Mythbusting some Heart Health Nonsense

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Oh, the stories I’ve heard regarding heart health. It’s enough for me to write a blog post about it, so here it is…let’s bust some myths regarding heart health.

Myth #1 Only old people get heart disease

Fact: Heart disease can affect anyone at ANY age.

Doctors diagnose most cardiovascular diseases in people above age 45. Let me assure you the damage to the heart started WELL before that age.

How do I know this? Sadly, I’ve seen first-hand many patients in their 20’s having heart attacks and have witnessed how diet and lifestyle choices affect their health.

Harvard has published a study showing 10% of all heart attacks occur in people under age 45, and sadly, I predict that number will only increase. Why?

Because obesity is on the rise in young people. This generation is more sedentary, shows an increase in diabetes, gets less sunshine, and is susceptible to an overall increase in risk factors for heart disease.

The work needs to start NOW. Prevent the disease and avoid the diagnosis later.

Myth #2 Avoid Saturated Fat for a Healthy Heart

Fact: Saturated fat does not lead to coronary artery disease

The fat debate continues to promote a great deal of confusion. This confusion stems from a mid-twentieth century diet-heart hypothesis which led to long-held beliefs that consuming saturated fats leads to heart disease.

In the fat game, quality is key. Saturated fats from grass-fed animals, organic coconut and palm oils act as prime nutrients and fuel for your body.

Myth #3 Surgery fixes your Heart

Fact: Surgery merely repairs a problem, it DOES NOT CURE the CAUSE of the problem.

Two very common heart procedures that I did were coronary heart bypasses and stent implants. A bypass takes an artery from another part of your body and connects it below and above a blocked section, restoring blood flow. Doctors place stents in arteries to open blockages caused by plaque buildup. 

What do these two procedures have in common? Both mitigate blockage issues but neither address what’s causing the blockages. Continued symptoms of heart disease will reoccur if we don’t address the root cause, hence, no “cure.”

Myth #4 You can eat what you want if you take heart Medication.

Fact: Heart medications, or medications to treat high-risk diseases that lead to heart disease, are not cures for the problem. Medications simply regulate symptoms.

Let’s use diabetes as an example. Medications may help blood sugar levels, but you are still at an increased risk for cardiovascular disease. Diabetes medications do not address any of the causes of diabetes: obesity, physical inactivity, high blood pressure, smoking.

My professional opinion: if your physician only prescribes pills and does not address the foods you eat–you are being treated by the wrong doctor. Controlling what you eat means you control your health.

Start controlling your health now by going Paleo.

Myth #5 Heart disease cannot be reversed.

Fact: Not only can heart disease be reversed, so can the risk factors for heart disease.

Exercise alone can reverse heart disease without the use of invasive procedures or pharmaceuticals. Combine daily activity with the right Paleo foods and you might eliminate medications and lower your risk factors. (Do not stop taking medication without consulting your doctor.)

Myth #6 Heart disease only happens to men.

Fact: According to the CDC’s most recent data, heart disease is the leading cause of death in women in the United States.

Heart disease is not gender specific. The same risk factors for men (obesity, diabetes, stress, sedentary lifestyle, etc.…) negatively impact women’s health, just as they do men’s. Symptoms may present differently, but the risk for disease is distributed equally.

Myth #7 There are no natural cures for heart disease.

Fact: Based on Myth #5, we know there ARE natural cures for heart disease.

Yes, we’ve already addressed exercise and proper nutrition, but there are also other options to “cure” heart disease like increasing sleep, proper hydration, and reducing toxins. These things not only can reverse heart disease, but they can also prevent other diseases as well.

Myth #8 Vitamins and supplements don’t lower your risk of heart disease.

Fact: Science has established that proper amounts of vitamins and minerals are necessary for good heart health.

Unfortunately, today’s soil lacks nutrients due to mass production in agriculture. Combine that with pesticides and other pollutants that our bodies need to process, and we are automatically in a nutrient deficit.

To add to that, the Standard American Diet, which is full of artificial “foods” does very little to nourish the body or mind.

Organic foods, along with proper supplementation, allow your body to function optimally and lower your risk of heart disease.

Myth #9 Cardiologists are the best specialists to PREVENT heart disease.

Fact: Cardiologists do not prevent heart disease. They simply treat it. Notice I said “treat”, not “cure” and not “prevent.”

Cardiologists receive training on how to diagnose heart disease, how to prescribe medications, and how to perform surgical procedures in order to control it.

However, we do not receive training on how to “prevent,” “reverse,” or even “cure” heart disease.

I AM, however, a big proponent of Chiropractic Doctors. Licensing and training keep chiropractors away from prescription pads and surgeries. This means a chiropractor approaches disease treatment with adjustments, lifestyle changes, and nutrition. The DC approaches healthcare from the lens of prevention, without pills or procedures. That’s why I recommend the Doctor of Chiropractic as the primary health care provider.

Myth #10 Diabetes medications prevent heart disease.

Fact: No magic pill prevents heart disease.

For most people, diet and lifestyle choices cause disease and dysfunction. To reverse health issues by taking a pill and not addressing the other factors is like putting a Band-Aid on a bullet wound.

Diabetes IS a risk factor for heart disease. Medications which manage (not cure) diabetes do not mitigate risk factors for heart disease.

My advice, take back control of your health. Be PROACTIVE, not REACTIVE.

Get started today with a free consultation.

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