Cardiovascular disease is the number one cause of death of both men and women in the US; very often the first symptom is sudden death; stroke is also a major cause of disability and death in the US; one stroke-related death occurs every 3 minutes, and African Americans are twice as likely to have a heart attack or a stroke.

The Love Your Heart Program is a research-based program that is carefully designed to evaluate well-known risk factors such as obstructive sleep apnea, and less well-known but more important risk factors such as toxic heavy metals, inflammatory markers, vulnerable plaque markers, omega 3 indexes, and nitric oxide (NO). This allows personalized, precise, effective recommendations to be given to reduce the risk of heart disease and premature death.

Nitric oxide (NO) is implicated in overall cardiovascular health. Disturbances in NO bioavailability have been linked to endothelial dysfunction, leading to increased susceptibility to atherosclerotic lesion progression, hypertension, hypercholesterolemia, diabetes mellitus, thrombosis, and stroke. In addition, erectile dysfunction is also reflective of endothelial dysfunction and is therefore a potential warning sign of underlying heart disease.

The Omega 3 Index may be the most important number for heart health. It measures the concentration of the Omega 3s, EPA, and DHA, as a percent of total fatty acids in red blood cells and is a very strong predictor of the risk of heart disease, especially the risk of dying from a sudden heart attack which contributes to over half of deaths associated with heart disease.

Finally, hormone levels are tested to achieve a comprehensive evaluation of cardiovascular status. Low testosterone levels and high estrogen levels have been linked to heart disease in men, and testosterone replacement therapy is cardioprotective, especially in men who are also diabetic.

Investigators studying growing rates of cardiovascular disease in young women have found that an alarmingly high number of women with heart disease—more than two-thirds—have abnormally low estrogen levels. The WISE study (Women’s Ischemia Syndrome Evaluation) provided many insights into the factors associated with coronary artery disease in women, including that 69% of young women with coronary artery disease have low levels of estrogen compared with just 29% of their heart-healthy counterparts and that low estrogen was associated with worse coronary artery disease. The problem is caused by the loss of menstrual cycles, and the condition is called Functional Hypothalamic Amenorrhea (FHA). This condition may harm the heart as well as the overall health of young women.

All traditional and non-traditional risk factors should be addressed as an overall heart health risk reduction strategy.

For clients who are found to be at moderate to high risk of coronary disease or heart failure, additional non-invasive tests will be recommended for additional insight.

The Screening for Heart Attack Prevention and Education (SHAPE) Task Force presents a new practice guideline for cardiovascular screening in the asymptomatic at-risk population. SHAPE Guideline calls for noninvasive screening to detect and treat those with subclinical atherosclerosis. The Screening for Heart Attack Prevention and Education (SHAPE) Task Force recommends noninvasive atherosclerosis imaging of all asymptomatic men (aged 45-75 years) and women (aged 55-75 years).

Over 50% of heart attack patients have optimal cholesterol levels, so it is clear that a more in-depth look at a person’s risk of heart attack is needed. There is no time like the present…Test, don’t guess, especially if you are a young woman whose menstrual cycles have stopped.

Contact the Centre For Vibrant Health And Wellness today to schedule your Love Your Heart Program