How Your GUT HEALTH Could be Hurting Your HEART
Your heart begins beating four weeks after conception. It carries you through a lifetime and beats about 100,000 times in one day. It has a lot of work to do and all systems to and from this magnificent organ need to be running smoothly to keep you in tip top shape.
In spirit of February being Heart Health Month I have been thinking a lot about the root cause of heart and cardiovascular problems. In doing so (as always) I am drawn to look outside the box of the common causes that we are aware of on the surface. "Don’t smoke, get exercise, eat your fruits and vegetables in a high-fiber diet and reduce your stress." These are all great, however, I believe there is a silent cause that is affecting the masses: I believe it is coming from the GUT! What I’m talking about is cardiovascular inflammation secondary to gut inflammation. What does this mean? It means that the inflammation in your gut can drive an inflammatory response in your blood vessels leading to and from the heart. Ouch! This leads to coronary atherosclerosis.
What is Coronary Atherosclerosis?
This is also known as hardening of the arteries which can slowly narrow and harden the arteries throughout the body. When atherosclerosis affects the arteries of the heart, it’s called coronary artery disease.
Coronary artery disease is the No. 1 killer of Americans! Deaths resulting from coronary artery disease are triggered from heart attacks caused by sudden blood clots in the heart’s arteries. Check out these mind blowing stats:
- More than 15,800,000 Americans have known coronary artery disease.
- Around 500,000 people will die of coronary artery disease this year. More than a million will have a heart attack.
- One-third of all deaths in Americans older than 35 are due to coronary artery disease. Yikes
- After age 40, about 50% of men and one-third of women can expect to eventually have coronary artery disease.
What Is Gut Inflammation?
Inflammation in the gut is rampant in this country and of the world at large. Gut inflammation can be driven by a variety of factors such as food sensitivities, antibiotics, stress, toxic exposures, infections and more! Chronic inflammation contributes to coronary atherosclerosis. Here are a few ways gut health can lead to arterial inflammation and coronary artery disease:
#1 Gut Infections
Gut Infections such as H. Pylori are culprits in arterial inflammation. It resides in the stomach and also makes it’s way through the digestive tract and into the arterial and vascular system burrowing itself in the lining of vessels and triggering inflammation.
#2 Leaky Gut
Leaky Gut is when the lining of your gut has become porous. When the intestinal lining is repeatedly damaged due to reoccurring leaky gut syndrome, damaged cells called microvilli become stunted to do their job effectively which is to process and utilize the nutrients and enzymes that are vital to proper digestion AND health. This results in impaired digestion and absorption of nutrients being affected. As more exposures occur, your body initiates an attack on these foreign invaders. It responds with an inflammatory immune response that can lead to inflammation anywhere else in the body, such as the cardiovascular system.
#3 Food Sensitivities
Food sensitivities are a significant cause of inflammation. They ultimately lead to a Leaky Gut (see #2). A “sensitivity” is not a full blown allergic response such as an anaphylactic response known as an IgE response. A sensitivity is where a food generates inflammation behind the scenes in your body that may be obvious - or likely may not. A sensitivity is known as an IgG response and can be difficult to track since it can take 2-72 hours to generate inflammation. As the "sensitivity" food is consumed, it continually triggers inflammation system wide, including the cardiovascular system Common sensitivity symptoms someone may experience on a daily basis are headaches, brain fog, irritability, joint/muscle pain, skin abrasions, moodiness, stubborn weight and more!
Simple Steps to Turn Down the Inflammation in Your Gut
1) Try an elimination diet for 3 weeks. Cut out the most common food allergens, including gluten, dairy, eggs, corn, yeast, soy, and peanuts.
2) Eat a whole-foods, plant-based, high-fiber diet. This is essential to feed the good bugs in your gut and to provide the nutrients you need to functional optimally.
3) Take probiotics daily to boost the healthy bacteria in your gut. Look for those that contain 10 billion CFU of bifido bacteria species and lactobacillus species. Choose from reputable brands.
Granted, there is MUCH more that needs to be done to heal your gut and decrease the inflammation in your body but this is a good start! If you would like to take this process further so you can truly heal your gut and protect your heart, join me for “Complimentary Energy Breakthrough Session". Schedule your session here now. ($295 Value)
May you be well and thrive!