The reason high blood pressure is bad for you is that it can damage the
arteries causing heart disease, kidney damage, and stroke. There are
two major types of hypertension with pills that work best for each
type. Natural alternatives like Co-Enzyme Q-10 and Nattokinase can
reduce reliance on blood medications.
Dr. John H. Laragh is the Expert on Hypertension:
My pick for best expert on hypertension is John H. Laragh, M.D., who
founded the American Society of Hypertension in 1986. He is chief
editor of the American Journal of Hypertension, and has written over
900 articles and several textbooks dealing with hypertension. He was
featured on the cover of Time magazine in 1975 for discovering the role
of the renin-angiotensin-aldosterone system in regulating blood
Hypertension is Caused by Renin:
Dr. Laragh says that common hypertension is caused by excess renin in
sixty percent of cases and can be permanently controlled with one drug
by measuring blood renin activity, a procedure that Dr. Laragh
pioneered and perfected over thirty years at his lab. This test is
called the PRA test (plasma renin activity). As a hospital based
interventional radiologist for over 25 years, I sometimes did renin
measurements by placing small catheters into each renal vein and
collecting blood samples from the kidneys. This is unnecessary for
most people, because a routine blood sample from an arm vein is all
thats needed to run the PRA test.
Two types of essential hypertension:
Dr Laragh says that essential hypertension exists in two forms. The
first form is low renin hypertension, occuring in about a third of
hypertensives. This is called Volume (V) hypertension. The plasma
rennin activity PRA test shows low renin (less than 0.65 ng/m/hr) and
the "water pills" such as the thiazides and calcium channel blockers
work best for this type of low renin hypertension.
The second type is high renin hypertension, occurring in the other two
thirds of hypertensives, is labeled (R) for Renin Hypertension, and the
PRA levels are greater than 0.65 ng/m/hr. This hypertension is due to
the renin-angiotensin system, and the newer drugs such as the ACE
Inhibitors (angiotensin converting enzyme inhibitors) and Beta Blockers
work best for this type.
Measuring renin allows your doctor to identify which type of
antihypertensive medication is most likely to be effective and possibly
safer for you. If the "water pills" have been tried and dont work for
you, then you are probably have high renin hypertension and need one of
the newer drugs such as an Ace Inhibitor. The advantage here is that
once this is established, it is possible for you have your blood
pressure controlled with one drug permanently. Single drug therapy for
life is the major goal of treatment.
Problems with older "water pills":
Whats really worrisome is the harm that can result from traditional
diuretic "water pills". The thiazide diuretic, hygroton, produced an 11
percent incidence of permanent diabetes over five years in the ALLHAT
drug study. Diabetes is a super high risk factor for heart disease.
In other studies, thiazide "water pills" have been shown to regularly
produce potassium and magnesium depletion that leads to cardiac
arrhythmias, muscle weakness, EKG changes and fatal heart problems.
All of these thiazide "water pill complications can be avoided by using
a spirolactone type water pill instead (called aldactone). This is
off patent and therefore inexpensive costing 22 cents per tablet. The
aldactone corrects the sodium-volume related hypertension without ever
causing diabetes or depletion of potassium and magnesium.
It hard to understand why Dr. Laraghs information has been overlooked
(if not deliberately omitted) in official recommendations for the
treatment of hypertension. And as a result, your doctor may not do the
renin test for high blood pressure unless you bring it up.
Alternatives to Drug treatment: Coenzyme Q-10 and Nattokinase:
Co-Enzyme Q-10 is a vitamin like nutritional supplement that has been
useful in eliminating the need for blood pressure medications in about
half the people who try it. One such program is advocated by Stephen
Sinatra, M.D. in his books, "The Sinatra Solution, Metabolic
Cardiology" and "Lower Your Blood Pressure in 8 weeks". Co-Enzyme Q-10
has also been credited with saving many people from death from
congestive heart failure when other drugs have failed. In addition,
since the statin anti-cholesterol drugs cause depletion of Co-Enzyme
Q-10 in the body, all patients on a statin drug should be supplementing
with Co-Enzyme Q-10. Since Co-Q10 is not a drug, your doctor may not be
aware of it.
The Benefits of Nattokinase on Blood Pressure
In 1980, while studying physiological chemistry at the University of
Chicago Medical School, Japanese researcher Hiroyuki Sumi accidentally
discovered that a traditional Japanese soy cheese which had been
consumed for centuries, called "natto", had the ability to dissolve
clots. His research group published a paper on the discovery in 1987.
Traditionally, Natto has been consumed not only for cardiovascular
support, but also to lower blood pressure. This was confirmed by
several clinical trials in 1995, at MiyazakiMedicalCollege and
KurashikiUniversity in Japan where the effects of nattokinase on blood
pressure in both animal and human subjects was studied. The
researchers found that natto inhibits angiotensin converting enzyme
(ACE), which has a lowering effect on blood pressure. In one Human
Study, Nattokinase ingestion was associated with a 10 percent drop in
blood pressure. Natto is a nutritional supplement which is considered
safe, However, people with bleeding disorders or on blood thinners
should use nattokinase only under medical supervision.
Check your own blood pressure:
If you are not sure what you blood pressure number is, you can have
your doctor check it, or you can check it yourself with your own
inexpensive machine obtainable from most drug stores. The normal blood
pressure is commonly stated as 120 over 80 mm Hg.
Jeffrey Dach, M.D. is double board certified with 25 years of
experience in the Memorial Healthcare System. His office in Hollywood
Florida is devoted to anti-aging medical solutions with bio-identical
hormones and targeted nutritional supplementation. You are invited to
visit his web site: http://www.drdach.com/
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