We all know that Valentine’s Day is all about either sharing the love, or watching Bridget Jones Diary while crying into a tub of icecream, but did you know that February also marks Heart Research Month; encouraging Australian’s to make their heart health a priority.
According to the World Health Organization, Cardiovascular disease is the number 1 cause of death globally with an estimated 17.5 million people dying from CVD in 2012, representing 31% of all global deaths (1).
In a recent scientific breakthrough, there has been extensive interest in the antioxidant, Ubiquinol, which has been shown to support the heart and help maintain a healthy heart and vascular system.
With that in mind, here are my top five tips and facts to protect your heart this Valentine’s Day:
- Your heart needs a constant supply of energy to ensure it doesn’t skip a beat. Ubiquinol is the active antioxidant form that is responsible for the powerful benefits associated with CoQ10- a well-researched ingredient that assists in supporting the heart. Studies show that Ubiquinol has superior bioavailability to conventional CoQ10 and that it is 3-8 times more absorbable.
- Ubiquinol is a strong antioxidant that powers your cells and helps your body’s cells convert energy. The role of antioxidants in the body is to help control free radicals that can lead to oxidative stress which may contribute to age related diseases. Another antioxidant that has been shown to support the heart is dark chocolate. 30g a day is the suggested amount to help maintain a healthy heart.
- The heart needs a steady supply of energy to support other organs in the body. Although Ubiquinol is present in a number of foods, such as red meat, sardines, peanuts and spinach, you would have to consume an unachievable amount to receive the sufficient daily dose. It is possible to support these levels through supplementation.
- Red Wine contains key antioxidants called polyphenols which may be beneficial as they help protect the lining of blood vessels in your heart. Red Wine may also assist in lowering the risk of heart disease by increasing levels of high density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol and protecting against artery damage. All alcohol should be consumed in moderation.
- Your heart health may have a lot to do with the foods that you eat, and therefore maintaining a healthy diet is essential. Make sure that you are consuming servings of colourful vegetables, fruit, nuts, legumes and whole grains each day. Valentine’s Day is a time where we tend to indulge in foods that are naturally high in antioxidants, such as chocolate, oysters and red wine which may also be good for your heart health when consumed on occasion and in moderation.
Always Consult your healthcare practitioner on strategies for your health.
NHMRC, 2015, https://www.nhmrc.gov.au/grants-funding/research-funding-statistics-and-data/funding-statistics-grants-and-funding-data/cardi
Hosoe K et al, Regul Toxicol Pharmacol 47: 19–28, 2007
Ikematsu, H et al, Regul Toxicol Pharmacol 44: 212–218, 2006
Shults CW et al, Exper Neurol 188:491– 494, 2004
JACC Heart Fail. 2014 Sep 25. pii: S2213-1779(14)00336-9. doi: 10.1016/j.jchf.2014.06.008. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25282031