Hypertension

I am really going to turn the pressure up on this protocol. Sorry, I couldn’t resist. According to heart.org, nearly 103 million americans have high blood pressure. That equates to about 1/2 of all adult americans. I think there is something wrong there. Cholesterol medications can have some not so fun side effects which is why I am SO excited to share this protocol with you. Of course, never go off of your blood pressure medications without consulting with your primary care physician.

 

Chocolate– Yes, I said chocolate. What protocol ever starts out with “you need to eat more chocolate!?” this is just one of the reasons why I love this protocol so much. Research has shown that 100g (about 2/3 cup) of daily dark chocolate significantly decreased BP in patients with essential hypertension. Now, that is a TON of chocolate. Well, to some of us at least. There is just one caveat to adding chocolate into your diet. The chocolate you consume needs to be VERY dark chocolate. Many of the popular chocolate bars on the market today have more sugar than actual chocolate in them. That isn’t going to be helpful for your high blood pressure. The chocolate I am talking about here is 80% cocoa or higher. I recommend taking a couple of squares after each meal and that chocolate may just help you lower your blood pressure.

 

CoQ10/Ubiquinol– CoQ10 is my overall number one heart health nutrient. It found in small amounts in some foods including organ meats such as liver, heart, and kidney. I don’t know about you, but I haven’t exactly been craving organs lately. Supplementing with COQ10 is much simpler.

 

CoQ10 has been shown to increase ATP (energy of the body), increase antioxidant activity, increase resistance against infections, enhance immune function and help age-related decline in cognitive function. CoQ10 has also shown to be effective in helping with overall heart function including congestive heart failure and hypertension.

 

What exactly is CoQ10? CoQ10 is primarily found in tissues that demand a lot of energy throughout the day like the heart, skeletal muscles, and the brain! CoQ10 is a crucial component in creating energy called ATP in the body. I take 100mg of CoQ10 each day so that I know the energy factories of my cells are turning on all cylinders.

 

 

Vitamin C– There is evidence that free radicals play a role in the pathogenesis (cause) of hypertension. Therefore antioxidants such as Vitamin C may play a protective role. A study was completed which comprised of 45 patients with hypertension. These patients were randomly assigned to receive vitamin C or placebo for 30 days. In the Vitamin C group, mean systolic BP fell from 155 mm Hg at baseline to 142 mm Hg.

 

What doesn’t vitamin C do. In fact I love vitamin C so much that I actually created a whole protocol surrounding vitamin C and the infamous vitamin C flush. Check it out here.

 

 

Fish Oil– Numerous studies have found that supplementation with fish oil or the omega-3 fatty acids present in fish oil, lowers BP in patients with essential hypertension. Fish oil really has become much more “sexy” over the past decade. You can find fish oil in every pharmacy across the country. So, which fish oil should you choose? I am here to give you the skinny.

 

There are two things that you need to know when it comes to fish oil.

  1. Many fish oils contain heavy metals. I live here in Minnesota (land of 10,000 lakes) and grew up on a small lake in northern Minnesota. There was a warning on my lake not to eat a fish called a northern because they were so high in mercury. If there is a warning over a freshwater fish in rural Minnesota, then we all need to be aware of just how pure the fish oil is that we are putting in our bodies.
  2. Fish oils get rancid very easily. Whenever I order my fish oil, I always ask that it be shipped with ice packs, overnighted, and then I store it in the fridge. Fish generally isn’t my favorite food in the world. Rancid oil from a fish definitely isn’t my favorite. A useful hint for you is that if there is a fish oil sitting warm on a shelf (and looks like it has been there for awhile) just run away.

 

Adding fish oil to your daily routine is absolutely critical and it has been shown to be a tremendous help in lowering hypertension.

 

 

*Grassi D, Nececozione S, Lippi C, et al. Cocoa reduces blood pressure and insulin resistance and improves endothelium-dependent vasodilation in hypertensives. Hypertension 2005;46:398-405

*Osilesi O, Trout DL, Ogunwole JO, Glover EE. Blood pressure and plasma lipids during ascorbic acid supplementation in borderline hypertensive and normotensive adults. Nutr Res 1991;11:405-412 

*Prisco D, Paniccia R, Bandinelli B, et al. Effect of medium-term supplementation with moderate dose of n-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids on blood pressure in mild hypertensive patients. Thromb Res 1998;91:105-112

Recommended Dosage:

Take one capsule daily with food.

Recommended Dosage:

Take one capsule daily with food.

Recommended Dosage:

2 capsules twice daily

Recommended Dosage:

2 teaspoons daily. Perfect for adding to a smoothie. 

Recommended Dosage:

Take 1 teaspoon by mouth, holding for 30 seconds before swallowing. May also be stirred into water. Best taken on an empty stomach at least 10 minutes before meals.

Recommended Dosage:

Two capsules twice daily with food.

**Always Consult a Physician prior to beginning and new supplements or removing any medications.