• free shipping on orders over $89*

  • we give back to our community

  • Buy now pay later with Afterpay

articles/clogged_arteries_700_x_700_px.png
blog

All Things Arterial Health

31 July 2022

Evidence-based ✅

 

Acknowledgement

We acknowledge that this topic is incredibly sensitive and are not sharing this information to offend or trigger anyone. Our intention is only to give people a broader understanding of how our bodies work regarding plaque buildup and how healing is possible when given the right conditions. 

 

Prevention is always the best strategy in life, and living in a way that supports health and reduces inflammation.

 

We are not here to push any product onto anyone; we only wish to provide information and always encourage folks to do their research. Looking outside of mainstream sources can be eye-opening and also potentially life-changing.

 

Nothing we say is to be taken as any health advice; it is only information.

 

Arteries, Arterial Health and Atherosclerosis

 

In today's blog, we will be discussing:

  1. What is an artery?
  2. How do they get blocked, and what is this called? 
  3. The endothelium
  4. What negatively impacts the endothelium?
  5. Another factor that drives arterial plaque is metabolic syndrome
  6. How do we know if they are blocked?
  7. What the doctor will tell you
  8. Let's talk about cholesterol
  9. The trouble with the doctors advice
  10. The Foods recommended by doctors that have it all wrong
  11. But wouldn't the doctor know best?
  12. Our health is our responsibility
  13. Prevention is key
  14. How to get inflammation down
  15. Can arterial plaque be reversed?
  16. Supplements said to help arterial health
  17. Closing message

 

1. What is an artery?

 

An artery is a type of blood vessel that allows the blood to flow from the heart to numerous body parts.

 

The arterial wall consists of three layers; the outer layer (tunica adventitia), the middle layer (tunica media) and an inner layer (tunica intima).

 

2. How do they get blocked/clogged, and what is this called?

 

That is the golden question. It might not be what you've been led to believe, however.

 

Let's explore.

 

When plaque builds up on the arterial wall, over time, this can lead to a condition known as 'atherosclerosis' (commonly referred to as "clogged arteries").

 

According to Doctors such as Dr Natasha Campbell-McBride, author of 'Put Your Heart in Your Mouth', the root of atherosclerosis is not cholesterol.

 

The root of atherosclerosis is inflammation and metabolic syndrome and not cholesterol.

 

Let's try to understand this mechanism as it may seem like a controversial statement.

 

3. The Endothelium

 

The endothelium is a thin layer of cells that cover the arterial walls. It is a complex organism that performs many vital functions.

 

Did you know that the endothelium communicates between our blood and the entire body? If there is anything in our blood that shouldn't be there, your endothelium will inform your body about it.

 

The endothelium controls many things:

  • Blood coagulation (making pro-thrombotic and anti-thrombotic substances)
  • Creating fibrinolytic substances (these dissolve blood clots)
  • Controlling muscle tone of blood vessel walls and heart (instructing contraction or relaxation, thus becoming wider or narrower)
  • The endothelium produces hormones such as autocrine, paracrine and endocrine. These hormones communicate with the rest of the body.
  • Endocrine function: the endothelium is now seen as a significant part of our endocrine (hormonal) system
  • It plays a vital role in electrolyte balance (essential for homeostasis)
  • It plays a vital role in both blood pressure and blood sugar. 
  • It plays a role in the state of blood cells and tissues in the area.
  • It helps to regulate the immune response.
  • The endothelium is involved in inflammation and repair.

 

4. What Negatively Impacts the Endothelium?

 

Like any tissue or cell in the body, the endothelium can be damaged or even attacked. Inflammation will then occur.

 

Inflammation is at the root of arterial plaque buildup.

 

The list of things that negatively impact endothelial health (causing inflammation) is long and keeps growing.

 

Man-made Chemicals

  • Personal care products such as shampoo, deodorant, perfume, makeup, hair dye, body lotion, shower gel, bubble bath, fake tan and other body products
  • Pharmaceutical drugs
  • Domestic cleaning products
  • Fragrances
  • Laundry products
  • Detergents
  • Chemicals in cigarettes and vaping
  • Industrial pollution
  • Agricultural chemicals (such as glyphosate)
  • Chemicals in tap water (fluoride, chlorine, chloramine, aluminum/aluminium)

Other Factors that Damage the Endothelium 

  • Processed foods (these foods alter proteins and carbohydrates)
  • Infectious microbes such as Chlamydia pneumoniae, Helicobacter pylori, Cytomegalovirus, Herpes zoster virus and Bacteroides gingivalis (plus many more)
  • An abnormality in the gut microbiome (gut flora/gut bacteria)
  • Nutrient deficiencies
  • Lack of proper sun exposure
  • A sedentary life without exercise (the body needs to move to be healthy)

This list may seem overwhelming as many people are exposed to many of these factors. What is empowering, though, is that we have control over much of this.

 

By choosing to live more naturally and eating certified organic where possible, we can limit our exposure and help to shield ourselves against inflammation.

 

Remember, the less harm done to our endothelium, the less inflammation!

 

Reducing endothelial inflammation is the key to preventing plaque-build-up and clogged arteries/atherosclerosis.

 

5. Another factor that drives arterial plaque is metabolic syndrome. 

 

Metabolic syndrome is prevalent in society because of people's food and beverage choices.

 

In metabolic syndrome, a person's blood is full of sugar (glucose) and insulin. This is also known as 'hyperinsulinemia'.

 

To explain the role of processed carbohydrates in metabolic syndrome, I am going to quote Dr Natasha from her book 'Put Your Heart in Your Mouth', pg 53:

 

"Carbohydrates absorb as molecules of glucose and raise blood glucose (blood sugar) level. Glucose cannot leave your bloodstream and enter the tissues and organs of your body without the help of insulin; insulin is the key that opens the "doors" on the cell walls of your organs and lets glucose in. Once in the cell, glucose is used for producing energy, building cellular structure and other functions. Insulin converts any excessive glucose into fat and stores it in your fat tissues for a rainy day. When the blood sugar goes down to a normal level, the production of insulin stops and the blood sugar level also goes down to normal. That is what happens in a healthy, normal situation. However, we have created a very abnormal and unhealthy situation in our world of plenty. We have created processed carbohydrates."

 

Another thing to mention is that alcohol is a carbohydrate and many folks participate in regular alcohol consumption. 

 

Dr Campbell-McBride's book goes into such incredible detail. I believe that if more people read this book and other books such as 'The Great Cholesterol Myth', the health of humanity would be in a different position today.

 

Going into too much detail about this goes beyond this blog's scope. Still, I encourage you to get your hands on Dr Natasha Campbell-McBride's Book 'Put Your Heart in Your Mouth' (and the book mentioned above).

 

Dr Campbell-McBride's book 'Put Your Heart in Your Mouth' is highly informative about this natural treatment for atherosclerosis and other cardiovascular/vascular problems.

 

We have only scratched the surface here.

 

 

6. How Do We Know if They are Blocked?

 

Arterial plaque builds up over time, and we won't know the problem until there are symptoms. Things we may notice (if there is a problem) are:

  • Feeling fatigued
  • Feeling dizzy
  • Shortness of breath
  • Chest pain
  • Lower back pain
  • Cold hands and feet
  • Numbness or pain in your hands, feet or legs
  • Discoloured skin in the affected area
  • Hair loss
  • Decreased pulse/absent pulses (especially in the feet)
  • Sores/wounds that don't heal

More severe symptoms that may require emergency care:

  • Pain in the chest
  • Sudden pain in the arm or back
  • Shortness of breath
  • Racing heart
  • Sweating
  • Feeling nauseous
  • A drooping face
  • Feeling confused suddenly
  • Changes in mental state
  • Trouble talking or swallowing
  • Weak feeling on one side of the body
  • Loss of consciousness
  • Changes in vision

If these symptoms occur, please call 000 and seek immediate medical attention.

 

 

7. What the Doctor Will Tell You

 

Suppose you are diagnosed with "high cholesterol" or clogged arteries (through any number of tests). In that case, the doctor may suggest two things:

  1. To change your diet
  2. To go on a statin drug

In their dietary recommendations, they may suggest:

  • Avoid cholesterol-rich foods (we need cholesterol)!
  • Eat more grains (carbohydrates that spike blood glucose and raise insulin)
  • Taking a statin drug (this lowers the cholesterol produced in your body and has serious consequences, which we've written about here)

The doc will probably tell you to stop (or drastically reduce) eating bacon, fatty meats, high-fat foods and eggs.

 

He may also suggest avoiding butter and cream but tell you to consume low-fat products, margarine, instead of butter.

 

Might the doctor suggest using vegetable oils for cooking instead of animal fats? (because cholesterol, right)? 

 

From our extensive research, processed carbohydrates seem to be the issue and not so much animal fats. I heard a doctor say the other day on a podcast that cholesterol is a poor marker for testing and that insulin resistance is a better marker to test.

 

That was Dr Anthony Chaffee.

 

So maybe we are looking in the wrong area? Perhaps we need to focus more on insulin resistance instead of looking at cholesterol as the marker.

 

There's an analogy about this:

 

It would be like blaming the firefighter for starting the fire when he was there to put it out.

 

The firefighter gets the blame, but an arsonist lit the fire. Would that be fair, and would that be true?

 

The firefighter was doing his job and doing the right thing. The arsonist gets away with arson scot-free, and everyone keeps believing that the firefighter is to blame. 

 

8. Let's Talk about Cholesterol

 

If cholesterol were the bad guy (the arsonist), maybe this advice would make sense and be helpful. But cholesterol is not the bad guy in this equation or any equation!

 

Cholesterol is one of our body's most vital molecules; without it, we would be dead! In fact, we would never have existed as cholesterol is in just about every cell in our body and essential for numerous functions.

 

Our brain is especially rich in cholesterol (naturally).

 

We speak about cholesterol in our blog 'Why Cholesterol is Important for Your Health'.

 

This molecule is highly misunderstood, and the advice given to people about cholesterol is misleading and often dangerous. 

 

Medication is given to lower cholesterol, and this medication can affect the health of our brain (amongst many other serious side effects).

 

We discuss these side effects in our statin blog here.

 

 Many people may experience cognitive decline and memory loss after starting cholesterol-lowering medicines.

 

A medical doctor, former NASA scientist, and astronaut Dr Duane Graveline suffered a memory loss after taking statin drugs. Rather than staying on these pills, he decided to stop and try a diet of cholesterol-rich foods instead.

 

His memory soon returned, inspiring him to write a book to inform others of these drugs' harm to our memory.

 

Scientific trials have shown that cholesterol-rich foods improve the memory of elderly participants.

 

The theory (that is right, it is just a theory) of cholesterol being the cause of heart disease and atherosclerosis has been debunked many times over. Doctors have written countless books, and some even speak out (about the truth on the cholesterol topic).

 

So please know that these are not just opinions, they are facts, and I strongly encourage you to go and read our blog but also to read books such as:

  • 'Put Your Heart in Your Mouth - Natural Treatment for angina, heart attack, atherosclerosis, stroke, high blood pressure, peripheral vascular disease and arrhythmia' by Doctor Natasha Campbell-McBride.
  • 'The Great Cholesterol Myth: Why Lowering Your Cholesterol Won't Prevent Heart Disease- and the Statin-free Plan That Will' by Johnny Bowden and Stephen T Sinatra.
  • 'The Oiling of America' by Sally Fallon Morell on Youtube.

 

9. The Trouble with the Doctor's Advice

 

There are many things wrong with the advice, but this goes deeper than the food pyramid; it is the whole darn system.

 

When you understand how food works in the body, you will see that the advice (and the food pyramid) makes our society sicker and fatter.

 

10. The Foods Recommended by Doctors that Have it All Wrong.

 

Grains: We are told to eat more "heart healthy" grains but never mention how grains can raise insulin or that processed grains create metabolic issues.

 

If one is going to eat grains, they should be organic, free from glyphosate and prepared adequately by soaking/sprouting/fermenting.

 

The preparation and source matter.

 

Margarine: This is not a healthy option; full stop. Margarine is an unnatural product (a fake food). Margarine is not food when you understand how it is made (by hydrogenation and other processes).

 

Margarine is made from specific plant oil. It may be a seed such as a sunflower, safflower, grape seed, cotton seed, rape seed (canola), a grain (rice bran, corn) or a bean (soy).

 

These oils are promoted as "heart healthy" but are the opposite and may cause heart disease.

 

Margarine is toxic!

 

The image below is the margarine manufacturing process, where you can see exactly how this product is produced. We will let you decode for yourself if you think it's healthy or not?

 

Manufacturing Margarine

 

Vegetable/Seed Oils:

 

We talk in-depth about these oils on our blog 'Vegetable Oils May Be Public Health Enemy Number One!'.

 

Eggs: Despite what we are told and hear on TV, eggs are incredibly healthy, and the cholesterol in eggs benefits health. We've been told that eggs are best eaten sparingly, but eggs are one of the most nutritious foods on the planet!

 

We could write an entire article about eggs and how beneficial they are. 🥚🍳

 

Meats: we are told to avoid eating the foods that we have eaten for centuries, that we evolved from and that have enormous health benefits because of the nutrition they contain. Meat is the original superfood, and we need not be scared of consuming it because all the fear around eating meat is propaganda and misleading.

 

We could discuss many other foods, but this would turn into a book! It's essential to educate yourself properly on the topics of cholesterol, statins, vegetable/seed oils and diet.

 

Start with the book recommendations and related articles at the bottom.

 

None of what we say is ever to be taken as health advice; you must make your own choices.

 

 

11. But Wouldn't the Doctor Know Best?

 

That is what we have been conditioned to believe, but doctors do not study health, and they know very little about nutrition. Doctors study anatomy, physiology, diseases and drugs; they do not study health, proper diet, healing and natural medicine.

 

Doctors rarely give out a prevention plan focused on diet and lifestyle.

 

Also, how long do you spend in the doctor's office when you go there? They don't sit with you for an hour or more to dive deep into nutrition, sleep, lifestyle, exercise, stress/emotions and other vital factors.

 

Scroll back up to see the list under the sub-heading 'What Negatively Impacts the Endothelium'?

 

12. Our Health is Our Responsibility

 

It is totally up to you whom you put your faith in; I'm not trying to convert you or change your mind. I do hope, though, that this information causes you to enquire further.

 

I hope you take note of the resource suggestions in the footer of this article, as mainstream resources are heavily biased towards mainstream medicine/opinion and big pharma.

 

13. Prevention is Key

 

Prevention is always better than a cure. Below we will list factors to consider if one wants to reduce the risk of arterial sclerosis (clogged arteries).

 

Reducing your risk of clogged arteries comes down to how you live your life. Some of the risk factors are:

  • Chronic inflammation*
  • Metabolic syndrome*
  • Smoking
  • Consuming alcohol frequently 
  • Sedentary lifestyle
  • Obesity
  • Chronic infections

*Inflammation and metabolic syndrome are the main drivers of arterial plaque buildup.

 

14. How to Get Inflammation Down?

 

Managing inflammation (keeping it low) is the key to preventing most health issues and diseases (including arterial plaque buildup). Some say that it can even be reversed.

 

Getting inflammation under control involves some work on the person's behalf. It involves taking stock of their health, including their diet, lifestyle, stress and environment.

  1. Eat a low-inflammatory diet and avoid things that cause inflammation.
  2. Managing stress (this is key)
  3. Keeping chemical exposure to a minimum (see our list below)
  4. Supplementing where necessary
  5. Getting adequate sleep

 

15. Can Arterial Plaque Be Reversed?

 

Honestly, we do not know. However, some think it can. There are two different schools of thought.

 

School of Thought (Camp #1) Arterial Plaque Cannot Be Reversed

 

This camp believes that the further progression of plaque can be halted but not reversed. This camp believes that changing lifestyle factors and diet and taking a statin drug will stop further progression of the plaque buildup.

 

This may be fine if cholesterol were to blame, but as you have learnt, cholesterol is not the villain; inflammation and metabolic syndrome are.

 

School of Thought (Camp #2) Arterial Plaque Can Be Reversed:

 

A study was conducted where rabbits were fed a diet high in cholesterol with additional supplementation of arginine citrulline. These two amino acids are essential in the function of nitric acid. Nitric acid helps relax the arteries and may help reverse arterial plaque.

 

We recommend reading the book 'The Arginine Solution' by Robert Fried PhD and Woodson C. Merrell, MD if this topic interests you.

 

16. The Following Supplements are Said to Help Arterial Health:

  • Nettle: Nettle has been shown to knock down plaque on blood vessels
  • Vitamin B1 (thiamine): Helps to dissolve blood clots and plays a role in reducing calcium buildup in the vessels
  • Vitamin B2 (riboflavin): Helps to calm the vessels down, allowing better blood flow
  • Vitamin B3 (niacin): Helps to send arterial debris to the liver for detoxification
  • Magnesium: Magnesium is famous for its effect on muscles, including muscle spasms. Magnesium can prevent spasms in the blood vessels of the heart. It can also help prevent calcium buildup.
  • Co Q10 Enzyme: Heart health is supported by CoQ10 and is essential to supplement if you are taking statin drugs. Statins lower CoQ10 enzyme
  • Cod Liver Oil: Cod liver oil contains vitamin D3, and vitamin D helps to regulate calcium absorption. Calcium buildup promotes and solidifies plaque formation. Calcium buildup can accumulate in the arteries.
  • Cod Liver Oil with Concentrated Butter Oil: FCLO+ CBO (Cod liver oil with the addition of concentrated butter oil) is the next level up from cod liver oil on its own. This is because it contains all the necessary fat-soluble vitamins for absorption and function. Vitamins A, D, E and K2.
  • Skate Liver Oil: Skate liver oil contains more vitamin D than cod liver oil. We discuss below the importance of needing both vitamin D3 and K2.

Did you know that a deficiency in vitamin D3 and K2 can lead to the accumulation of calcium in the arteries? 

 

Note: D3 and K2 is found in the Green Pasture Fermented Cod Liver Oil + Concentrated Butter Oil (FCLO+CBO) capsules and the Green Pasture Fermented Skate Liver Oil.

 

 

17. In Closing

 

We hope this article was informative today. Our message must be clear here. We are not trying to promote cures here; we are all about education.

 

Our message is to live in a way that promotes health and reduces inflammation.

 

Everyone must take responsibility for their state of health.

 

It is better to be sceptical and question everything, buy books and read up on this stuff as much as possible. 

 

Be careful not to buy books or put your faith in those who have a vested interest in big corporations (big ag, big pharma, big food, big tech and others). These corporations don't have your best interest at heart; they are there to make money, and sick people make them all billions!

 

To reiterate, we are not against doctors; most doctors are lovely human beings caught up in a system that's sole purpose is profit.

 

 

References:

Online:

https://www.webmd.com/heart-disease/stroke

https://medical-dictionary.thefreedictionary.com/artery

https://www.nourishingplot.com/2015/02/25/the-truth-about-cholesterol-doctors-speak-out/

https://www.westonaprice.org/health-topics/know-your-fats/why-butter-is-better/

https://www.verywellhealth.com/clogged-arteries-5190436

https://www.nfpt.com/blog/how-arterial-plaque-may-be-reversed Hibiscus Tea vs. Plant-Based diets for Hypertension.  (Additional resources by Dr. Michael Greger)

https://www.emed.com.au/nutrition/vitamin-mineral-info/coenzyme-q10/statins-deplete-coq10/

https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/9-benefits-of-cod-liver-oil

 

Books:

'Put Your Heart in Your Mouth - Natural Treatment for angina, heart attack, atherosclerosis, stroke, high blood pressure, peripheral vascular disease and arrhythmia' by Doctor Natasha Campbell-McBride. (pages 47-59)

The Cardiovascular Cure. John P. Cooke, MD, PhD.

No More Heart Disease. Dr. Louis J. Ignarro.

The Arginine Solution. Robert Fried, PhD, Woodson C. Merrell, MD

 

Resources that You Might Like

  • 'Put Your Heart in Your Mouth - Natural Treatment for angina, heart attack, atherosclerosis, stroke, high blood pressure, peripheral vascular disease and arrhythmia' by Doctor Natasha Campbell-McBride.
  • Nourishing Fats by Sally Fallon Morell
  • 'The Great Cholesterol Myth', by Johnny Bowden PhD and Stephen Sinatra MD

https://www.amazon.com.au/Lipitor-Memory-Statin-Misguided-Cholesterol/dp/0741418819

 

Disclaimer: This article is strictly for informational purposes and is not intended as health advice. Statements made have not been evaluated by the TGA and are not intended to treat, diagnose, cure or prevent and one should always consult with their trusted health professional before adding a new supplement to their diet.

Explore

The Blog

All
Histamine Series Part 3. Probiotics Yes or No?
11 August 2022

Histamine Series Part 3. Probiotics Yes or No?

Histamine Series Part 2. Gluten Intolerance
08 August 2022

Histamine Series Part 2. Gluten Intolerance

Histamine Series Part 1. Nutrient Deficiencies
03 August 2022

Histamine Series Part 1. Nutrient Deficiencies