Healthy arteries are incredibly important to your overall health. Arteries are the tubes, for lack of a better word, that carry oxygen-rich blood throughout your body.
Healthy arteries have smooth inner walls that allow blood to easily flow. But in some people, arteries become clogged from a buildup of plaque. This arterial plaque reduces blood flow and, in some instances, blocks it altogether.
Clogged arteries are a major health concern because they increase the risk of having a heart attack, stroke, and even death.
What Causes Arterial Plaque?
The plaque that forms along the inner walls of your arterial walls is actually made from various substances that are constantly circulating in your blood. These substances include cholesterol, fat, calcium, cellular waste, and fibrin, which is a material involved in blood clotting. To make matters worse, once material begins collecting along the arterial walls, cells in your arteries multiply and secrete additional substances, which clog the arteries even more.
As these plaque deposits begin to grow, the result is a condition called atherosclerosis, which causes the arteries to narrow and harden.
But how does all of this damage begin? From a few different things:
A Disproportionate Good/Bad Cholesterol Ratio
You know that too much “bad” cholesterol, or LDL, is a contributor of heart disease, but that doesn’t tell the whole story. We all have “good” cholesterol (HDL) circulating through our body, and this HDL is believed to remove some of the bad cholesterol from the circulating blood and transport it back to the liver where it is eliminated. Yes, having too much LDL is bad, but so is having too little HDL.
High Blood Pressure
High blood pressure not only increases the rate at which arterial plaque forms, it also speeds up the hardening of the arteries.
Smoking is a major contributor to heart disease because it lowers good cholesterol, raises triglycerides, and makes the blood sticky and more likely to clot.
One of the biggest culprits of clogged arteries is sustained high blood sugar levels. Those with diabetes and metabolic syndrome are some of the biggest at risk.
And of course, other factors that contribute to clogged arteries are things like obesity, a sedentary lifestyle, stress and a family history of heart disease.
How Are Clogged Arteries Treated?
There are a variety of ways to prevent clogged arteries. If you smoke, stop. Find ways to manage your stress. Begin exercising and maintain a healthy body weight. Maintain low blood sugar.
If your arteries have already become clogged, your doctor may recommend a few different treatment options, depending on the severity of your situation:
A stent – A small tube, called a stent, may be placed in the artery to keep it wide open and facilitate good blood flow.
Bypass surgery – This is a medical procedure where arteries are taken from one part of the body and moved to bypass clogged arteries to keep blood flowing.
Balloon angioplasty – Sometimes, to help open clogged arteries, this device will be inserted to push the plaque to the sides of the walls of the arteries. Kind of like a snow plow.
For those with less serious clogs, medication is often prescribed such as cholesterol-lowering drugs or hypertension drugs.
The problem with this approach, of course, is that these drugs are notorious for causing serious side effects such as muscle pain and damage, liver damage, Increased blood sugar or type 2 diabetes, and neurological side effects.
Now I don’t know about you, but the thought of becoming sicker in order to get well does not make much sense.
15 Foods That Will Naturally Unclog Your Arteries
Obviously if your arteries have suffered a lot of damage and you are at risk of a heart attack or stroke, you may need to follow your doctor’s recommendation of a surgical intervention. But for those people who are not at that point yet and are looking for a more natural and safer way to unclog their arteries, look to your diet first.
“Let food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food.”
~ Hippocrates, the father of medicine
The following list contains foods that contain healthy fats, antioxidants and soluble fiber. Not only are they great for your arteries and heart, they will also promote hormone production and beautiful skin and hair. Those are the kinds of side effects we love!
Asparagus is full of fiber and minerals, as well as important vitamins like K, B1, B2, C and E. Vitamin K is responsible for making sure calcium gets into your bones and teeth, instead of clogging up your arteries.
Studies have shown that eating avocado daily can decrease the bad cholesterol and increase the good cholesterol. From now on, add a little avocado to your salads, sandwiches, or even toss some in your protein smoothie to make it extra creamy.
Another vegetable that is loaded with important vitamin K, which helps prevent calcification of the arteries, is broccoli. And, thanks to its high levels of vitamins and antioxidants, broccoli also helps to prevent oxidation of LDL cholesterol.
You know that cinnamon is delicious and smells heavenly, but did you know that just one tablespoon of ground cinnamon per day can reduce cholesterol levels while at the same time clear and prevent plaque build-up? And thanks to all of the antioxidants cinnamon offers, you can feel good that you’re also improving your heart health by protecting blood from damaging oxidation.
If you’re looking for a place to put some of that cinnamon, try putting some in your cup of morning coffee. While too much coffee can be a bad thing, studies have found drinking just 8 to 16 ounces of coffee per day reduces the risk of heart disease by roughly 20%.
More foods that will help to naturally unclog your arteries are:
- Cold-water “Fatty” Fish
- Green Tea
- Olive Oil
Besides eating heart healthy foods to keep your arteries nice and clear, you’ll want to also maintain healthy blood pressure numbers. But how can you do that without being put on dangerous medications?
The Blood Pressure Solution is an all-natural way to bring down your numbers and keep them down. It’s how Dan dropped his number from 200 over 100 to 110 over 71 in ONE WEEK.