Angina

AnginaWhat is Angina?

Angina is a condition that happens when there is not enough oxygen that reaches the heart. There are a variety of causes for this particular condition. It can be brought about by spasms, stress, exercise, or excessive eating. To understand it further, you need to take a look at the possible cause for the disease – Atherosclerosis.

What is Atherosclerosis? Atherosclerosis is a progressive condition that occurs whenever plaque builds up in the arteries. The body makes cholesterol in order to produce hormones that are important for good health. However, there are also certain types of cholesterol that are considered as bad for the health, such as the high blood cholesterol, and LDL, low density lipoprotein. This LDL is one of the primary causes of the blockage of arteries. When the arteries are blocked, it can lead to stroke, heart attack, or leg cramps, which are also known as intermittent claudication; although the latter is one of a less serious nature.

 

What Causes Angina?

There are a variety of causes of angina.

  • Obesity and inactivity
  • Stress
  • High blood pressure and higher blood cholesterol levels
  • Poor fat metabolism
  • Poor cholesterol metabolism
  • Elevated lipoproteins and fibrinogen
  • Infections brought about by viruses, bacteria, and parasites. These cause damage to the blood vessels, the heart muscle and also to the valves.
  • Raised homocysteine levels
  • Smoking
  • Heavy metal toxicity
  • Poor nutrition. This includes a high fat diet and elevated sugar consumption. This could lead to nutrient deficiencies in the body.

 

Diagnosis, Signs and Symptoms of Angina

Angina – Sensation of pain in the chest that can last from 1 to 20 minutes. It is not an ordinary pain, but a crushing one. This pain may be felt in the arm, shoulder blade or in the left jaw.

 

Remedies, Treatment and Cure for Angina

Angina is not an incurable condition. You just need to take into consideration certain aspects of your daily life, and make the necessary changes.

Helpful Lifestyle Hints

  • Stop smoking. This is absolutely necessary because smoking causes damage to the blood vessels. It also brings about constriction and is among the causes of atherosclerosis. If you cannot quit smoking as of the moment, then you need to take various supplements like Vitamin C and multivitamins that have beta carotene and other body essential minerals.
  • Relax. Don’t get yourself too overstressed. Stress exacerbates angina and high blood pressure. It also aggravates poor fat metabolism. You may also try to indulge in yoga or meditation. If you know of other relaxing techniques, then you may try them out too.
  • Exercise. This does not mean that you have to immediately do a 30-minute cardio workout. You can always start gradually and lightly, especially if you have been sedentary for a long time. You can walk 3 to 4 times a week. You can then increase your speed and frequency if the task no longer becomes a challenge. 40 minutes to 1 hour of walking is the ideal time. If you speed up, it would lessen your exercise time in half but your body gets the same benefits. If you have any injuries, seek out the advice of a health professional first before indulging in any exercise.

 

Diet for Angina

Foods To Avoid

  • Steer clear from alcohol. This increases your triglycerides and cholesterol. If you opt to drink alcohol, do not ever binge. As much as possible, do not go beyond 5 servings of alcohol in one week. One alcohol serving is equal to 300ml of beer, 30ml of spirits, 100ml of wine, if possible red wine, 60 ml of sherry, port, or martini.
  • Reduce caffeine intake. If you could eliminate it altogether, the better. Avoid soft drinks and salt too.
  • Avoid too much cholesterol. This is a substance that is basically found in animal foods, fish, seafood, and eggs. The kind of fat that you eat always affects your blood cholesterol levels. Stay away from foods that have high trans fatty acids and saturated fats. Some of these foods are fried foods, fatty meats, butter, squid, coconut cream, prawns, squids, and take-away foods, can definitely increase blood cholesterol levels. Try to eat only 2 egg yolks every week and choose white meat like fish, and organic poultry. A diet mainly of fruits and vegetables is the most ideal since these do not have any cholesterol.
  • Avoid too much trans fatty acids and saturated fats in the diet. You can identify saturated fats because they solidify at room temperature. Examples of this are animal fats, butter, lard, dripping, coconut and palm oil. You may reduce intake of saturated fats by removing visible skin and fats from meat. Steam, grill, broil, bake, or microwave instead of roasting or frying. On the other hand, trans fatty acids are usually found in margarine, salad oils, shortening, shortening oils, milk, and heated meats or fats.
  • Limit intake of refined carbohydrates. Examples of these carbohydrates are white rice, white flour, cakes, croissants, pastries, man-made carbohydrates, biscuits, and soft drinks.
  • Use sugars sparingly. If you want to use honey or maple syrup, use them occasionally too. Avoid using artificial sweeteners and processed sugar.

Friendly Foods

  • Use vegetable oils. Olive oil or avocado oil are the best examples of non-heated polyunsaturated or monounsaturated fats. These do not increase your cholesterol levels in the body but they help in lowering them. Use good fats, otherwise known as essential fatty acids or good fats. Flax oil is also a source of good oil.
  • Eat more complex carbohydrates. You can continue consuming the amount that you usually consume or eat 3 servings daily, the amount the same as your fist. Eat whole grains, oat bran, textured wholemeal, basmati or brown rice, taro, pasta, noodles, and bulgur wheat, untoasted muesli. Choose low-sugar biscuits that are made with oats.
  • Eat fibrous carbohydrates instead of starchy ones. Choose onions, garlic, celery, asparagus, legumes, and beans, instead of corn, rice, bread, and pasta.
  • Eat dietary fibre like green and yellow leafy vegetables. These also contain natural antioxidants.
  • In order to balance your blood sugar levels, eating six small meals a day will help a lot in increasing your metabolism.

 

Vitamins, Minerals and Herbs for Angina

  • 400 IU of Vitamin E daily, 500mg of Vitamin C three times daily, and Bioflavonoids. These are helpful antioxidants and prevents the body from having any deficiencies that could lead to angina.
  • 15mg of Vitamin B6 and 25mcg of Vitamin B12, along with 200-400mcg of folic acid can help in reducing homocysteine levels.
  • 3000mg of lecithin daily can help in emulsify fats.

Herbs

  • Hawthorn. 1.5g – 3g of  leaf, dried flower or berry daily can act as antioxidants of the body.
  • Garlic. Helps reduce LDL and triglycerides in the body. One clove of fresh garlic a day can significantly help in reducing cholesterol.
  • Milk Thistle. 210mg – 630mg daily, along with 500mg of artichoke daily, can help in metabolizing fats.
  • Ginger. Helps in blood circulation, and breaks down the fibrous deposits in blood vessels and arteries.
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