Alternative Medicine Options For Heart Disease

There are a lot of myths about alternative medicine and what it can or cannot help. Wading through all of the information can be time consuming and cumbersome.

With serious diseases like heart disease, using complementary medicine can help treat some of the more serious complications.

Of course, heart disease should always be treated by a qualified medical professional and all alternative treatments should be supported by your doctor.

Food as Medicine

Aside from genetic components, various lifestyle factors lead to the development of heart disease. Many people get heart disease because of years of obesity, smoking, and other lifestyle risk factors.

One new method of eating is showing clinical benefits for the treatment of both obesity and heart disease.

The Ketogenic Diet has been studied in the treatment of obese patients with heart disease. In the study originally published in Clinical Cardiology, researchers show that obese patients who ate a ketogenic diet over 24 weeks had amazing results.

These patients had lower numbers of total cholesterol. Their HDL (good cholesterol) numbers were higher while the LDL levels decreased.

The level of triglycerides in the blood also decreased. There were several other statistically significant vital improvements seen in these patients. In this study, food truly was medicine for these patients.

Herbs and Supplements

Before discussing herbs and supplements appropriate for heart disease, it is important to note that all supplementation of herbs and other substances should be discussed with your cardiologist or physician.

Some herbs and supplements decrease the effectiveness of medications and can even have deadly side effects when mixed with conventional medications.

Healthline notes several herbs and supplements that are great complementary medicines for your body when battling heart disease. Here are the top performers in the war against heart disease.

Coenzyme Q10 (CoQ10) is a chemical used by the body to extract food for energy. The heart is constantly working and needs a consistent supply of energy.

CoQ10 decreases in levels of production as you age, so supplementing it could reduce oxidative damage and increase antioxidant enzymes. Many people see a reduction in cardiovascular symptoms when supplementing with CoQ10.

Omega-3 Fatty Acids reduce the inflammation often associated with atherosclerosis. This fatty acid can also help lower levels of triglycerides and fatty blood components.

Green Tea has many antioxidants in it that can help benefit your health. Studies showing it providing statistically significant improvements have participants drinking 5-6 cups of green tea daily.

Green tea extract is also available as a pill supplement if drinking this volume of green tea seems impossible.

Pomegranate works similarly to green tea. The powerful antioxidants can help reduce the signs of heart disease.

Magnesium and Potassium are essential minerals needed for basic cellular interactions known as electrolytes. Supplementing these minerals can improve heart disease and heart function.

When supplementing potassium consult your physician because too much potassium can cause kidney or liver damage.

Exercise and Stress Reduction

The best complementary medicine when treating heart disease can be exercise and stress reduction. Sometimes these two elements can be combined into one activity. Dr. Axe notes that exercise benefits are as great as medication when treating the symptoms of heart disease.

Some of the best forms of exercise that help reduce stress are Yoga and Tai Chi. When dealing with heart disease it is best to do gentile exercises that allow you to focus on clearing your mind.

Meditation is also a great way to help deal with stress and reduce the symptoms of heart disease.

While heart disease is a horrible condition to deal with, there are many ways to fight this health condition. Many western doctors only prescribe western medications to help deal with this condition. Not every provider has the knowledge of complementary or alternative therapies.

Adding these complementary medicines to your physician prescribed treatment plan can help you overcome the symptoms of heart disease with greater speed.

Some people who have used these therapies even report being able to quit the conventional medication therapies.

Alternative Treatments For Mental Health

Sadly, depression and anxiety are now running rampant in America. There could be a wide variety of reasons for this, but essentially, we live in an ever-changing world that expects us to be at the top of our game 24/7, we put in my hours at work and then rush home to look after our families and it can all get to be a bit too much.

Not everyone responds to typical treatments, like medication in the same way and finding the right medication for those who need it can be a long and painful process.

For those who don't need medication or are resistant to try a prescription, there are alternative treatments available.

Some of these can be used instead of medications, while others work with medication to improve treatment. Whatever you decide, it's important that you make the decision under the care of a medical professional.

Alternative Treatments

• Relaxation Techniques – there is a wide variety of relaxation techniques, which provide short-term relief from symptoms of anxiety, including deep breathing and hobbies.

• Yoga – yoga is one of the most popular alternative treatment methods and what makes it different from the others is that it combines meditation with breathing exercises and physical movements that stretch and tone the body. It is a wonderful way to relieve the symptoms of both anxiety and depression.

• Meditation – there is evidence that medication can help relieve the symptoms of both depression and anxiety.

• Acupuncture – this ancient technique is generally used to relieve pain, however, there is some evidence that it's also effective in treating anxiety disorders.

Natural Alternatives

Alternative mental health treatments cover more than just physical solutions; there are plenty of other natural alternatives you can try. Certain vitamins and minerals have become popular ways to reduce the symptoms of mental health issues.

• Omega 3 Fatty Acids – they're known for being good for your brain and as such, there have been studies, which indicate omega 3 fatty acids can play an important role in managing mental health issues. There are plenty of supplements available, but you can get yours naturally if you eat plenty of fatty fish and nuts.

• Folate – your body needs vitamin B9 (just another name for folate) and people who struggle with mental health issues are often found to have deficiencies of this vitamin. Therefore, a folate supplement may just help you manage your mental health.

In fact, the FDA has approved deplin (a form of folate) as an acceptable course of treatment for both schizophrenia and depression. It's not considered a primary treatment course, rather a supplemental or complementary treatment method.

• Foods – certain foods are designed to help treat certain health conditions. These foods are made without (or with) specific ingredients.

A good example would be how gluten-free foods are made to allow those with Celiac disease the opportunity to eat foods that would normally make them sick. There are medical foods available for mental health issues.

Equine Therapy

We know that pets can help reduce anxiety, but equine therapy has grown popular in that it provides patients with the opportunity to learn about caring for, grooming, and riding horses.

There are licensed programs across the US and they are operated by mental health professionals.

Again, you shouldn't embark on any of these treatment courses without first consulting your doctor. It's important that they be aware of what solutions you are trying and that you don't change your medications (or stop taking them) without first speaking to them.

This isn't just an issue that could affect your mental health, but also your physical health.

Coming off anti-depressants is a gradual process and going cold turkey could result in severe side effects.

Did you find this post fun, informative and useful? If so, please share it with others!

If you have a comment, question or suggestion, please leave a comment below!

Cheers, Helene Malmsio

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