SMOKINCHOICES (and other musings)

December 10, 2014

Dr Roach on A-fib/Cholesterol

 Abnormal heart rhythm goes undetected at times

To Your Good Health

Keith Roach

   Q #1) Ten years ago, I had many episodes of rapid heartbeats — diagnosed as atrial fibrillation.   My cardiologist put me on a medication, which I took for a couple of years, but the A fib came back. The doctor changed my medication to sotalol, but that didn’t help, either.  

I read that low magnesium could be a cause of atrial fibrillation, and I started taking calcium, magnesium and potassium. I haven’t had an episode of rapid heartbeats for four years.   I went back to my doctor, who told me the idea was crazy. I haven’t seen him in four years.   It seems a shame that we hear of so many treatments for A fib when it might be stopped with a simple supplement.  

A: Well, the idea isn’t crazy, but low magnesium isn’t the only cause of atrial fibrillation, and supplements of magnesium and other electrolytes won’t stop atrial fibrillation in most people.  

A low level of magnesium in the blood, however, is a recognized risk factor for developing atrial fibrillation, and magnesium given during heart surgery reduces the risk of developing A fib afterward in some studies, so there is something to it. Because oral magnesium is safe and inexpensive, I think it is reasonable to try it.   I remain concerned because atrial fibrillation can go on in some people without their being aware of it and the major risk has to do with blood clots.  

You should be evaluated periodically to ensure that your heart rate is persistently normal. You should also try to find a physician who is willing to work with you on combining “alternative” treatments with traditional therapy.  

Q #1,  it is a given that I would always go toward the non-invasive, non-toxic  holistic approach.  And it would seem this patient has also gravitated in a similar way toward more natural processes with her inner guide leading the way.  Been there – done that, only my own A-Fib wasn’t a brief episode, but more life-long.  Have availed cardiology in so many of it’s various ramifications and therapies.  It can be intimidating and fearful.  
It is also clear that there is much to be considered when dealing with the heart;  no one thing alone is  the panacea. . but a complex approach.  My thyroid problems had been so overarching and neglected for so many decades that the gland was now beating up my heart.  No less than UCLA’s Dr Abraham helped save my day by redirecting my thinking.  So much is needed, CoQ-10, EFA’s,  Nattokinase – natural and best blood thinner around and non-RX. . . all extremely helpful and necessary.  The salt – potassium balance is one of the most important things we can achieve — to insure that balance is right for our body.  Calcium and Magnesium are two side of the coin which regulates the relaxation and contraction of how the cardio system works. .  again, balance.  
In my case no matter how much or what kind of Magnesium I took, I couldn’t get enuff to get the job done..  Like this patient, I researched and it paid off when I learned of liquid, spray on Magnesium rubbed onto my belly.  My body couldn’t absorb it properly (as happens with many), so in my frantic effort to take more and more as the doctors urged,  I was afflicted with constant diarrhea that hurt my health even further.  I was housebound and weak.   Suffice it to say, I quit seeing cardiologists altogether and quit all meds.  Have not regretted it.  
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But the A-Fib couldn’t be ignored, so I kept researching, found a book by a Naturopath by the name of Dr Harry Elwardt  who specializes in Heart therapies  — book was called  simply “Lets STOP The #1 Killer of Americans TODAY.   I got excited and dug in.  After getting the message anchored in my head, put myself on this protocol and immediately started to notice improvement, energy and peaceful sleep without the scary, heart racing and skipping (kinda hard to live with) .  . .  couldn’t lie on my left side as the pumping was too extreme.  
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Aside from all the usual nutrients [some of which I mentioned above],  do you know what the heart and brain are really seeking before they start breaking down?  They run on FAT, but they function on AMINO ACIDS  All I knew about amino acids is that athletes took them.  So yeah, I’m daily ingesting Arginine, D-Ribose, Carnitine and Taurine. . .BIG TIME!  And because I’m really on borrowed time (at 85),  started to fade again and so – doubled my dosage [on my own] and feel great again.  The amounts I use aren’t in the range of what professional athletes take, besides which they are safe and non-toxic, food-grade all the way.  So I won’t be needing any stents or surgeries or further expensive tests and none of those pharmaceuticals – why would I?  
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It’s nitric oxide which runs the engines in all the mitochondria in every cell in our body.  Divine instrument that our body is,  it makes NO by itself, but as we age and ingest all the pollutants the world offers now in this industrial age we live in, it makes less and it is incapable of keeping up with demand, so we help it along with exactly what it needs . . Arginine, the star of the show.  Have laid out my protocol in several posts, so won’t go into it now,  but for anyone interested and wanting to get the book, Dr Harry has it on his website:  www.thehealthguardian.com    I visited there yesterday and it has several videos up explaining what they do. Somehow, this protocol has also brought my BP down, so this has all been a blessing to me.  
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I would agree with Dr Roach’s conclusions, that it is safe to use Magnesium.  But I would go further, it is necessary and in abundant amounts, but if you want to loose the other worry as well, by all means use an abundant amount of Nattokinase; it out ranks most pharmaceuticals with good reason.  

Q#2) My question pertains to cholesterol — specifically low-density lipoprotein particles, or LDL-P, and how they differ from low-density lipoprotein cholesterol.   My cholesterol readings: total, 176; triglycerides, 170; high-density lipoproteins, or HDL, 50; and LDL, 92. My particle numbers: LDL-P, 1,570.  

My doctor advised me to increase my pravastatin dose from 10 to 20 milligrams. Because of statin side effects, I resist increasing my dose.   I am 80 and in good health, with no diabetes or known heart disease, and I try to eat a balanced diet and walk at least a mile daily. In your opinion, should I increase the statin dosage?  

A: Two questions are in play.   The first: Does the measurement of LDL particles add value to the measuring of LDL cholesterol levels? Although some preliminary evidence indicates that it might, most authorities don’t recommend using the reading except in certain high-risk populations — especially in people with diabetes.  

The second: When is it appropriate to increase the dose of statins? For most people, the recommended goal of therapy is an LDL number of less than 100 — which you have already achieved.  

Levels of less than 70 are advocated by some cardiologists.   Because you are at a reasonable level and don’t have diabetes or heart disease, I wouldn’t recommend increasing the dosage for someone in your situation.  

I do recommend continuing your balanced diet and walks, which have many benefits.  

Q#2)  Very hard for me to be objective and reasonably fair on this one as I am so opposed to statins.  Between the over-saturation of our elders nationwide with statins and the low-fat diets all were advised to consume, its a wonder they aren’t dying off even sooner.  This product impacts the body’s ability to handle its CoQ-10 needs [which are very high],  as both brain and heart really need CoQ-10. . .now there is talk of giving it to younger people, even youth to prevent heart disease down the road.  But in fact it is setting them up for it.  
Cholesterol is NOT  the problem the medical complex says it is.  We NEED CHOLESTEROL.  Our brains and heart both do.  FATS, good fats are not a problem either, and yet our nation has been on a low-fat diet for generations based on faulty thinking, not science at all.  That has perhaps done more for obesity and heart disease than almost anything else.  carbs make us fat – not fat!. . . . .   .   til next time,  Jan

Dr. Roach answers letters only in his North America Syndicate column but provides an order form of available health newsletters. Write him at P.O. Box 536475, Orlando, FL 32853-6475; or ToYourGoodHealth@med.cornell.edu  .

   
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