There has been a dramatic increase in the use of nutritional supplements over the last several years, with many relying on these alternatives as a means to prevent and treat disease. There is a common belief held by the population that all supplements are created equal. This has led some to seek the best value, not the best quality. A consumer should know that the grade, form, purity, bioavailability and third party verification all contribute to the effectiveness of the product they’re ingesting.
Nutritional supplements are typically available in four different categories: pharmaceutical grade, medical grade, cosmetic or nutritional grade, and feed or agricultural grade.
Pharmaceutical grade is the highest quality grade of vitamins, meaning the purity, dissolution and absorption meet the highest regulatory standard verified by an outside party. Pharmaceutical grade vitamins may be available without a prescription, but they are typically only sold by licensed health care practitioners.
Medical grade vitamins are also a high-grade vitamin, although they may not meet all of the standards of pharmaceutical grade vitamins. Prenatal vitamins typically fall into this category.
Cosmetic or nutritional grade supplements are typically sold in health food stores. These supplements might not always be tested for absorption, dissolution or purity. Additionally, these supplements do not always have the same concentrations of active ingredients as what is listed on the label.
Feed or agricultural grade supplements are produced for veterinary use, and patients should not use this grade of supplement [Source: Smith].
You may be asking, “Why are things such as form, purity and bioavailability so important?” The ability for your vitamin to work properly can vary greatly depending on the form used. An example of this is the difference between natural or synthetic vitamin E. Natural vitamin E is absorbed better from the GI tract and is more active than its synthetic counterpart. Magnesium aspartate is better absorbed and more bioavailable then magnesium oxide, but some manufacturers of lower-grade supplements use the oxide form because it takes up less room in the capsule or tablet and is less expensive. Purity is another important quality. All vitamins should be screened for impurities such as lead, mercury, pesticides, insecticides or other toxic ingredients [Source: Smith].
The best way to make sure you are purchasing a high quality nutritional supplement is to buy a pharmaceutical grade form. These are usually only sold by a licensed health care practitioner such as a doctor, nurse practitioner, compounding pharmacist or chiropractor. The manufacturers of pharmaceutical grade supplements know their high quality products can have a profound effect on an individual’s health; therefore, they want a licensed health care practitioner monitoring the use of their product. If you don’t know if the supplements you are purchasing are pharmaceutical grade, make sure the company is Good Manufacturing Practice (GMP) certified and find out by whom they are certified. You may also want to make sure they perform laboratory analysis on their products, find out what kind of assays they perform on their products, and see if they do disintegration studies on their supplements. You may also want to see if the company performs human trials to ensure they are safe and effective. Seeking out a health care provider trained in integrative medicine can be a step in the right direction to help you through the process of finding a high quality nutritional supplement that will meet your personal needs.
Article extracted from : http://health.howstuffworks.com
Millions of individuals are shocked to find that their doctor advises them that they have high blood pressure (hypertension). Often there are no symptoms, no reason to suspect that the pressure of blood in the arteries is high, putting pressure on the arteries and veins. These blood vessels become more rigid with age giving rise to blood vessels being more inclined to burst.
About 90% of people who have high blood pressure have no obvious underlying cause. This is medically called essential hypertension, but there are certainly increased risk factors and these will be discussed later in the article.
This condition is extremely common affecting 10 to 20 per cent of the UK adult population. Hypertension is more common in men that in women and occurs more frequently in middle and old age, although a surprising number of young adults are being found to be hypertensive.
In 10% of cases there is a definite cause of high blood pressure. This is called specific hypertension. These causes include certain disorders of the adrenal glands. One of the hormones that the adrenal glands produce is called aldosterone. Aldosterone controls the amount of sodium and potassium that there is in the blood and tissues. This alters fluid levels in the cells and the fluid around the cells and can cause the blood to become too thick, thus increasing blood pressure. Also,in some cases of kidney disese, hypertension may occur due to changes in the production of angiotensin, a protein that is involved in narrowing small blood vessels in tissues. This causes an increase in blood pressure. There are certain congenital heart defects that give rise to specific hypertension and certain drugs can cause high blood pressure. Taking the combined contraceptive pill appears to increase the risk of hypertension.
How do I evaluate how serious my problem is?
The doctor or nurse will measure your blood pressure using a sphygmomanometer (try to pronounce it!) to measure the force on the blood vessels as the heart pumps and the pressure of the vessels when the heart is at rest in between beats. This gives two figures that you are no doubt familiar with. Below is a rough idea of how the doctor will assess the results. Remember that everyone’s blood pressure rises temporarly and falls because this is a natural occurence in the body. It becomes a problem when it is constantly high, or becomes high very suddenly. So oftentimes you will be asked to return and perhaps be seen by a nurse, to ensure that you are not suffering from ‘white coat syndrome” (stress of having blood pressure taken by a doctor can naturally cause a rise in blood pressure in some people, which could be wrongly interpreted).
- Borderline hypertension: 120-16-/90-94 mmHg
- Mild hypertension: 140 -160/95-104 mmHg
- Moderate hypertension: 140-180/105-114 mmHg
- Severe hypertension: 160+/115+ mmHg
What can I do to help high blood pressure?
The good news is that about 80% of individuals fall into the borderline to moderate hypertension range and most cases can be brought under control very successfully by change in lifestyle, diet and taking natural remedies and herbal remedies that are known to help hypertension. These methods can often be superior to drugs in cases of borderline and moderate hypertension.
It is true to say that all drugs have side effects. Diuretic drugs and beta-blockers have side effects listed including incresed risk of heart disease and most medical professionals will try and avoid giving these if they can unless the problem is persistent and doesn’t respond to lifestyle changes.
If you suffer from severe hypertension (160+/115+), drugs are indicated. However employing all the measures by eating a diet rich in nutrients can help tremendously in cases of moderate high blood pressure. It appears that when drug therapy is necessary ACE inhibitors or calcium channel blockers seem to be the safest options.
General Lifestyle, Diet and Natural Remedy Guidelines for Helping Hypertension
Many individuals are enlightened regarding healthy eating. But there are some specific areas that someone with high blood pressure should particularly consider.
- Lose weight if necessary
- Avoid high alcohol consumption, caffeine and smoking. Exercise and reduce stress.
- Eat plenty of fibre obtained from unrefined grains, nuts and fruit and vegetables and pulses. We should eat at least 30g of fibre per day. If your intake of these foods are low, consider taking either LOCLO orTNT(Total&Nutrition&Today) or other natural fibre supplements that you can buy from this site.
- Eat plenty of celery, garlic and onions. Garlic and onions have been researched and have shown to reduce the systolic blood pressure in hypertensive people by 3.1%. If you don’t like eating a lot of garlic, try taking Garlic- High Potency. Take the equivalent of 4g fresh garlic per day.
- Studies show that omega-3 oils can help to reduce systolic and diastolic blood pressure by up to 9 points(mmHg). Considerably reduce intake of animal fats (fatty meat, dairy products) adn increase your consumption of 1 tablespoon of cold pressed vegetable oils daily. This can be done by daily making salad dressings, mixing in potatoes and soups. Eating nuts and sprinkling freshly ground seeds such as pumpkin, sunflower, linseeds or sesame seeds into soups or on cereals is helpful . Increase your intake of oily fish to at least 3 times per week. If you find this difficult to do, try taking either a high quality fish oil (not cod liver oil) or a flaxseed oil product. Try either, or a combination ofOmega 3 EPA and/or Flax Seed Oil . Since you need to be taking in about 1 tblsp oil, then large numbers of capsules are necessary. Try taking 4 of each daily. If they repeat on you, keep them in the refrigerator and take the cold capsules as soon as you can. They then melt further down in your stomach.
- Reducing salt intake can be helpful in some cases (sodium chloride). Steaming vegetables makes them tastier and reduces the need for salt. Avoid processed foods as they often contain high levels of salt. Eat plain nuts as opposed to salted and avoid potato crisps (chips). The body does need salt, so the best way to obtain this is by using Celtic Salt or Himalayan Salt
- There is a substance which is sythesized (produced) by the body called Coenzyme Q10, sometimes known as ubiquinone. Interestingly 39% of people suffering from hypertension are short of this coenzyme. Although no one knows what effect this has, if a person is deficient, it seems to negatively effect metabolism. Its not easy to get from one’s diet since the body manufactures it from other raw materials, but it is available from black grapes. Correcting this deficiency can reduce systolic and diastolic blood pressure by as much as 10%. How do you know if you are one of the 39% who are deficient in CoQ10? Some signs are gum disease, high cholesterol levels, and arteriosclerosis or diagnosed heart disease. You need to take about 60mg twice daily.
- Stress plays a large part in elevating blood pressure. If your doctor thinks this is your problem, click on the section in this site in the search library onto ‘Stress, anxiety” , Nutricalm contains important B vitamins as well as soothing chamomile.
- Vitamin E is the vitamin that we would say is one of the most important for the heart, as an antioxidant and to prevent blood inappropriately clotting. Its properties for healing tissue , which would include blood vessels is well documented. We suggest that a dose of 400 – 800 iu’s per day is a therapeutic dose for hypertension. We prefer to use mixed tocopherols rather than a single kind of vitamin E
- Lead toxicity is often linked to hypertension (see related article) andvitamin C. The Journal of Laboratory and Clinical Medicine Vol. 24, August 1939, No. 11, pp. 1119-1127 increased cardiovascular disease. Vitamin C is really important to promote excretion of lead from the body. People who live in soft water areas may have higher amounts of lead and lower amounts of calcium and magnesium (protective against high blood pressure) due to the high acidity of the water. If you suspect your water may be high in lead, take 500mg-1000mg 4 times daily of
- Magnesium can help lower blood pressure because it is involved in
activating the pump that allows potassium into the cell and sodium out of the cells. This in turn affects the body’s response to the amount of fluid present in the blood. Again, think of taking extra magnesium if you live in a soft water area. Consider taking 500mg to 1000mg daily (divide dose) for 3-6 months. If you have kidney disease or severe heart disease (high grade atrioventricular block), do not take magnesium. Magnesium is also helpful in combatting stress and anxiety
- Vitamin B6 taken in a B complex or in the combination supplementMega Chel . This contains an array of nutrients that support the entire circulatory system – arteries, veins, tissues and organs that service this amazing body system. We use Mega Chel in our clinic.
Diets low in potassium and high in sodium (salt) is linked to hypertension so this is where a diet high in potssium from fruit and vegetables comes in. Increasing dietary potassium can really help high blood pressure. If your diet is low in fruit and vegetables, supplementation may help, particularly if you are over 65. If you are suffering from kidney disease or taking digitalis, potassium sparing diuretics or ACE inhibitors, potassium supplements must not be taken without consulting your doctor. A high quality salt such as Himalayan salt or Celtic salt, which are rich in many minerals, are worth considering as these salts have a similar combination of minerals as extracellular fluid. We do need about half a teaspoon of salt daily.
- More obscure suggestions for causes or contributing factors for essential hypertension is the effect that geopathic stress can have on some people. Moving bedrooms or repositioning the bed, sitting in a different chair from where you usually sit may help in alleviating stresses.See related article.
- Herbal formulas have been used for centuries to help support the systems of the body. They provide nutrients and phytochemicals that can have extraordinary but safe actions on body systems. They work not by blocking chemical reactions as drugs to, but by balancing body metabolism. Hawthorne is known to have a mild effect on blood pressure and is also well known as a heart tonic. We have mentioned garlic which is a food/herb. Many herbs and fruits contain proanthocyanadins that have antioxidant properties and reduce inflammation in the arteries and veins and help to strengthen them. This is very important in helping to reduce the risk of strokes and coronary attacks. Examples of these are pine bark, bilberry and strawberry. See in the summary below some suggestions for you to try.
So as you can see there is plenty you can do to help your hypertension with natural remedies, diet and herbal remedies. Obviously the more serious your problem, the more intense your treatment programme needs to be. Please do keep it up for at least 3 months minimum. Remember that symptoms and signs take a very long time to manifest themselves, therefore the body needs plenty of time to recover. If your regime is working, continue on with the programme for at least 6 months. You can then consider reducing to a mantainence programme to help to keep things stable.
Always pay attention to what you eat. These are your raw materials that the body uses to function. If anything is missing from your diet, your body will eventually tell you with symptoms of ill heatlh. Hypertension is not a death sentence if you take care of yourself. Your body is the most precious thing you have. Look after it.
There are many natural remedies that can help strengthen your arteries and veins. Taken as a long term programme, they have shown to be very effective for a lot of people. You can purchase these high quality supplements from this website by clicking on the links below.
ARTICLE EXTRACTED FROM : http://www.turnaroundyourhealth.co.uk/Herbal-Remedies-for-Hypertension—High-Blood-Pressure/B156.htm
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