The key to having healthy arteries is to keep them clear of dangerous plaque buildup. Plaque forms when cholesterol lodges in the arterial walls. “Making plaque disappear is not possible, but we can shrink and stabilize it,” says cardiologist Dr. Christopher Cannon.
The best course of action is to stop plaque from developing and prevent future plaque from building up.
If you have coronary artery disease, researchers found some exciting news in 2006. “Ridding the heart arteries of plaque was previously thought to be unattainable,” says researcher Steven Nissen, MD, and chairman of the department of cardiovascular medicine at The Cleveland Clinic.
“But what we found is that if you lower LDL cholesterol to very low levels and keep it there for two years, you can remove plaque in fairly significant quantities and partially reverse coronary artery disease.”
Healthy Arteries: Here are 8 ways to keep your arteries healthy:
1. Lower “bad” LDL and raise “good” HDL cholesterol levels
Low-density lipoprotein (LDL) deposits “bad” cholesterol into the walls of your blood vessels. High-density lipoprotein (HDL) removes this deposit of cholesterol and carries it away in your bloodstream. By lowering the “bad” LDL and raising “good” HDL, you will have healthier arteries and lower your risk of heart disease.
Moderate cardio exercise can not only lower your blood pressure, burn body fat, lower blood sugar levels, but also raise your healthy HDL levels. You should have a goal to exercise 30 minutes at least 5 days per week. Lifting weights along with aerobic exercise can also help with weight loss.
3. Lose weight
If you are overweight or obese, this extra weight increases your LDL cholesterol. Every pound you lose can help get you closer to healthier arteries. Losing 5-10% of your body weight can have a huge impact on your cholesterol levels.
4. Heart-healthy diet
You can reduce your risk of heart disease by up to 30% eating a heart-healthy diet. One popular heart-healthy diet is the Mediterranean diet. (1)
5. Limit alcohol
Men should limit their alcohol consumption to 2 drinks per day and 1 drink per day for women.
6. Quit smoking
Whether or not you have high “bad” cholesterol, if you are a smoker you should quit for overall better health. In fact, quitting smoking could actually help raise your HDL “good” cholesterol levels.
If you have coronary artery disease, or atheroschlerosis, your doctor may prescribe a statin drug to lower your LDL cholesterol and triglyceride levels. In fact, statins can cause LDL levels to fall by up to 60% as well as raise your HDL levels. Taking a statin won’t completely reverse atherosclerosis, but it will decrease inflammation which will help stabilize plaque buildup.
There are nutritional supplement products that you can take that will help you have a healthier heart.
L-arginine Plus® is one of these products.
L-arginine Plus® was formulated as the most effective l-arginine supplement available. This powder drink mix is made with 5,110mg of l-arginine and 1,010mg of l-citrulline to naturally and safely boost nitric oxide within the body.
This formula was made specifically to support healthy blood pressure, but offers a variety of benefits from healthy blood pressure support to healthy cholesterol support and more.