Archive for atherosclerosis
Reduced Progression of Atherosclerosis with Antibiotic Treatment & C. pneumoniae Seropositivity
The research that supports the role of infectious organsims in cardiovascular disease is building, and now we’re seeing the next step…treatment of the condition leads to reduction in the progression of the condition. My only thought…instead of antibiotics I would wonder if certain lifestyle changes designed to improve cardiovascular health may not exert a portion of their effects via supporting the immune system.
Circulation — Abstracts: Sander et al. 106 (19): 2428
DHEA Inhibits VSMC Proliferation Independent of ARs and ERs
I know it’s a big, long, complicated title, but basically this study shows that DHEA has independent effects on reducing atherosclerosis. Although DHEA is produced by the adrenals and converted to testosterone and then estrogen, this is an example of a precurser hormone/molecule having physiologic effects. Pretty amazing. Now, I would not recommend running out and taking bottles of DHEA to lower risk of CVD. However, making sure that your adrenal glands are functioning optimally is very important to maintaining healthy, physiologicaly normal levels.
JCEM — Abstracts: Williams et al. 87 (1): 176
The “fiction” of primary prevention: Role of IVUS in identifying early atherosclerosis
This is a review of the presentation of Dr. Stephen Nissen at the European Atherosclerosis Society 2004 meeting. And, while it is really no surprise to anyone who cracks a medical journal at least semi-annually, he shocked attendees by stating that 75% of attendees most likely has coronary artery disease that can be identified by intravascular ultrasound and that by the time we identify the problem, it has been ongoing for decades already. However, he addresses “primary prevention” as what cardiologist are doing–to me this is nowhere near “primary.” Addressing lifestyle factors that contribute to inflammation and promoting diets low in refined carbs and trans fats but high in whole grains and fruits and veggies can have a huge impact long before any symptoms might have appeared. This is true primary prevention.
Vit C, Peripheral Arterial Disease, Inflammation and Atherosclerosis
This article puts more weight towards the recommendation of Vit C as an integral portion of any program designed to lower your risk of heart disease. These findings are interesting in light of the article released last year that announced that Vit C was responsible for an increase in intimal thickness of the carotid arteries.
Circulation — Abstracts: Langlois et al. 103 (14): 1863
C pneumoniae in the Arteries and Amount of Atherosclerosis
There really has been mounting evidence lately on the presence of an infectious etiology for CVD. The interesting thing is that, much like homocysteine, the evidence is all over and yet the lay public is blissfully unaware of another contributor to heart disease. The lifestyle changes designed to improve health will also improve the immune system and hopefully its ability to fight off invaders such as C. pneumoniae.
Circulation — Abstracts: Vink et al. 103 (12): 1613
Predisposition to Atherosclerosis by Infections
This article adds further weight to the contribution of infections to cardiovascular disease. There is a growing list of factors that contribute to risk, and many, if not most, can be managed with lifestyle changes…CRP, cholesterol, homocysteine, HDL cholesterol and now infections. Maintaining a lifestyle that supports healthy immune function (avoiding refined carbs, lots of fruits and veggies..) can help lower risk of infections and possibly lower CVD risk.
Circulation — Abstracts: Prasad et al. 106 (2): 184
Effects of Aerobic Exercise on Inflammation and Atherosclerosis in Men
So everyone out there is looking at this saying, “duh–of course exercise will lower inflammation and slow progress of atherosclerosis.” So what’s so special about this study? THE BENEFICIAL EFFECT OF EXERCISE (on progression of atherosclerosis) WAS NOT PRESENT IN THOSE TAKING STATIN DRUGS. Wow. Didn’t hear this one in the news. Might this be from the inhibition of Coenzyme Q10 production via mevonolate somehow? Stay tuned….
Ann Intern Med — Abstracts: Rauramaa et al. 140 (12): 1007 -
Extra Virgin Olive Oil Biophenols Inhibit Cell-Mediated Oxidation of LDL
Two comments here. First, I frequently remind patients that LDL cholesterol by itself does not cause damage. It only causes damage to our blood vessels after IT gets damaged. So, protecting that LDL is very important. Lifestyles that include high levels of antioxidants, and now, with this study, high levels of olive oil, can help protect the LDL and prevent it from leading to atherosclerosis. Second comment, the closer the olive oil is to fresh off the tree, the more antioxidants the olive oil contains. So always go for the extra extra cold pressed virgin, unless you plan on cooking with it in which case it doesn’t matter because the heat will destroy the antioxidants.
Nutrition.org — Abstracts: Masella et al. 134 (4): 785 -
Long-term calorie restriction is highly effective in reducing the risk for atherosclerosis in humans
For all of you out there looking for THE anti-aging program, this is it. Time and again, calorie restriction without nutrient restriction shows much benefit to our markers of health. Of course, true to form, researchers are trying to find out if there is a compound or pathway stimulated by calorie restriction that can be mimic artificially which all the mess of changing your lifestyle.
PNAS — Abstracts: Fontana et al. 101 (17): 6659 -