Natural Alternatives to Aspirin Can Help Prevent Heart Attacks

hh-17.jpgTaking aspirin for your heart health could be doing more harm than good, when vitamins and fish oil are viable, natural alternatives.

Roger is 74, his brother Don was 76. For ten years both have been taking a baby aspirin every day to prevent heart attacks or stroke. Don died last month from a stroke. Now, Roger is questioning, why? Did they do the right thing for their heart health? Were there other options they hadn’t been told about? Where did this ‘aspirin idea’ start?

It began in 1991, when the Archives of Internal Medicine published a suggestion that all men over fifty should regularly take aspirin as a blood thinner. Following their doctors’ advice, millions of middle-aged and elderly people complied.

The British Medical Journal
recently asserted that these assumptions have been incorrect! Their meta-analysis found that older men and those with higher blood pressure derive no benefit from taking aspirin, but do incur risks of serious bleeding and stroke. Analysis of the data demonstrated that seniors who regularly take aspirin, thinking they’ll prevent a stroke, are at higher risk of bleeding in the brain. They may be doing much more harm than good.

One study compared two time periods, and revealed that among those taking antithrombotic drugs (like aspirin), the number of strokes increased seven-fold. Use of these drugs might become the number one cause of hemorrhagic stroke (caused by uncontrolled bleeding in the brain) in the elderly.

Are there alternatives to aspirin? Is there natural ways to reduce the risk of blood clots?

There are several natural substances that can assist in ‘thinning the blood’ to help prevent clotting. (These are not ‘substitutes’ for anticoagulants, so consult with your health professional before altering any of your prescriptions.)

Omega-3 fats (fish oils) have an anti-inflammatory effect on the cardiovascular system and appear to reduce how platelets stick together (how clots begin). Omega-3s slowly accumulate in the arterial walls to further inhibit localized clotting. Thinner blood and fewer clots means less plaque on arterial walls (atherosclerosis).

Taking vitamin E regularly
has been shown to reduce the incidence of life-threatening clots. Alpha-tocopherols and tocotrienols (two potent forms of vitamin E), taken in conjunction with omega-3 fats, can significantly reduce risks of clotting and heart disease.

Ginger and ginkgo biloba have both been used for a very long time by the Chinese as anti-inflammatories and to assist in thinning the blood. Both are readily available, are non-toxic and have many other health benefits as well.

Nattokinase is a powerful anti-clotting enzyme taken from a fermented Japanese soy product called Natto. It appears to be effective in dissolving clots and preventing their formation. It functions similarly to plasmin, the body’s own fibrinolytic (clot-dissolving) enzyme.

There are safe, natural and scientifically-proven methods to thin the blood, reduce clot formation, unclog arteries and promote improved heart health, without increasing the risks of hemorrhagic strokes.

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