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Heart Care

Heart Care

How can I take care of my heart?

The heart delivers oxygen to the muscles and transports essential nutrients in the blood to the cells. (76) If the heart is damaged, it can’t carry out these important functions. (77) Regular physical activity, managing your weight and eating a healthy diet are factors you can control when promoting a healthy heart. Following an ideal diet can be a challenge, so dietary supplements may help you get the nutrition you need. (78)

 

What supplements can help my heart?

Antioxidants

Taking vitamins C and E may reduce your heart disease risk. It is bet to eat a diet high in vitamin C, with foods like citrus, fruits, strawberries, tomatoes and peppers, and vitamin E, which includes green leafy vegetables, nuts and vegetable oils. (80, 81)

Aspirin

People who are at high risk for a heart attack or have already had a heart attack may find it helpful to take a daily low dose aspirin. This can help prevent blood clots. Ask your healthcare provider if taking aspirin is right for you. (82)

Coenzyme CoQ10

Also known as CoQ10, this is a natural antioxidant made in the heart, pancreas and kidneys. It helps cells produce energy and keeps the heart healthy. If a person has already had a heart attack,

CoQ10 can help prevent future heart problems from developing. (83) Some heart medicines, such as statins, interferes with the production of CoQ10. (84) Heart disease can also lower the body’s level of this helpful coenzyme. The best way to maintain a healthy level of CoQ10 in your body is to take a supplement.

Multivitamin and mineral supplements

These can help you get the right amounts of vitamins and minerals each day, if you can’t get them through your diet. (36)

Niacin

This may help some people lower their LDL (bad) cholesterol and triglyceride levels while raising HDL (good) cholesterol levels. (85) If you take cholesterol-lowering drugs, you should not take niacin unless your healthcare provider recommends this, as it make cause flushing or hot flashes. (86)

Omega-3s

Fatty fish, such as salmon, mackerel, lake trout, herring, sardines and tuna, contain heart-healthy omega-3 fatty acids. (87) Flaxseed and flaxseed oil also contain ALA, which the body converts into Omega-3 fatty acids. These may help reduce triglyceride levels and improve HDL levels. (88)

Plant sterols and plant stanols

These natural substances that help lower LDL (bad) cholesterol. They are found in many fruits, vegetables, beans, nuts, seeds, and vegetable oils, as well as in some margarines, orange juice and supplements. (89)

 

Nutrients for heart health

Nutrient

Suggested Use

Vitamins C and E

Vitamin C: 90 mg per day for men and 75 mg per day for women (63)

Vitamin E: 22 IU per day (64)

CoQ10

50-1,200 mg per day for adults (83)

Omega-3

fatty acids

500 mg of EPA/DHA per day for healthy people 1,000 mg and per day for people with heart disease or as directed by your healthcare provider (45)

Plant sterols and stanols

2 g per day (89)

Vitamin D

600 IU per day for adults (9)

 

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