Vitamin Tips to Take Care of Your Heart

Armen Hareyan's picture
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(NC) - With obesity on the rise in North America, the incidence of coronary heart disease (CHD) is becoming a greater concern.

The good news is that recent evidence in the Journal of American College Cardiology and the Journal of Nutrition reveal that certain nutrients play a role in reducing the risk of CHD. Here are some vitamin tips for your heart to get pumped about:

Vitamin B6: In the Nurses Health Study, the risk of coronary heart disease was lower in patients with higher intakes of vitamin B6. Homocysteine, an amino acid found in the bloodstream, is a risk factor for CHD. B6 and other B-complex vitamins help break down homocysteine in the body. Vitamin B6 is found in organ meat, fish, eggs, beans and bananas.

Vitamin C: Vitamin C may have an impact in reducing the risk of heart disease. According to the Journal of American College Cardiology, those who took higher doses of vitamin C had nearly a 30% reduced risk. Citrus fruit is the richest source of vitamin C.

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Vitamin E: Modest amounts of vitamin E could result in a 40% reduction in the incidence of CHD. Vitamin E also plays a role in reducing the risk of a second heart attack in CHD patients. Vegetable and seed oils, nuts, and wheat germ are good sources of vitamin E.

Folic Acid: One of the B-complex vitamins, folic acid (or folate) is important in reducing the risk of CHD as well as preventing heart attacks by lowering homocysteine levels. Folate, the natural form of folic acid, can be found in foods such as dark green leafy vegetables, nuts and asparagus, or some fortified breads and cereals. The recommended amount of folic acid, 0.4 mg, can also be found in a daily multivitamin. Folic acid, the synthetic form of folate, is actually more easily absorbed by the body than in its natural form.

Calcium and magnesium are two minerals that may also play a role in lowering blood pressure and preventing CHD.

Reducing the risk of CHD starts with good nutrition. A diet rich in fruit and vegetables and low in fat, as well as taking a daily multivitamin supplement like Centrum are good ways to make sure your body is getting the nutrients it needs. In fact, a recent Swedish study showed that use of a multivitamin supplement was associated with a 21% reduced risk of heart attacks in men and 34% in women. For more information about multivitamins and healthy living, visit www.centrumvitamins.ca

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- News Canada

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