(Natural News) Antioxidants protect your cells from damage caused by harmful molecules called free radicals. According to a study, three antioxidants, namely vitamins C and E and alpha-lipoic acid, help reduce inflammation in patients with heart failure.
The findings of this double-blind, crossover study were presented at Experimental Biology 2019 in Orlando.
Free radicals and heart health
When free radicals accumulate in your body, they cause oxidative stress. This state harms your DNA, along with other essential structures in your cells.
Research suggests that chronic oxidative stress can increase your risk of chronic diseases like cancer, heart disease and Type 2 diabetes.
By adopting a balanced diet rich in antioxidants, you can boost your blood antioxidant levels. This can help prevent oxidative stress and lower your risk of developing chronic diseases.
Heart failure occurs when the ability of the heart to pump blood effectively is impaired. At least 50 percent of patients with heart failure have preserved ejection fraction (diastolic heart failure). In this condition, the left ventricle is unable to relax enough to fill properly, resulting in the accumulation of blood or fluid in the lungs, veins and other tissues.
Heart disease causes the most fatalities in America, with over 600,000 cases recorded annually. Heart failure is another major issue and affects a whopping five million people in the U.S.
Inflammation, heart failure and antioxidants
The researchers who conducted the study found that three antioxidants can significantly improve the health of patients with heart failure.
On their own, alpha-lipoic acid and vitamins C and E are good for your overall health. But the study showed that the combination of the three antioxidants offers more health benefits. (Related: 20 Best foods for your daily vitamin C.)
For the study, 16 patients with heart failure received either a placebo or a combination of 1,000 milligrams (mg) of vitamin C, 600 mg of alpha-lipoic acid and 600 international units (IU) of vitamin E.
While the study was ongoing, the scientists monitored microvascular and large blood vessel functioning in the participants. They also switched the participants in each group and assessed their blood vessel function for a second time.
The researchers found that the combination of the three antioxidants reduced harmful inflammation and increased nitric oxide levels in heart failure patients. Nitric oxide is a known vasodilator, a molecule that relaxes the blood vessels and causes them to widen. Dilation of the blood vessels results in better blood circulation.
Micronutrient supplementation and heart disease
Dr. Matthias Rath, who has conducted studies on Cellular Medicine, presented similar results from a pilot clinical trial where heart failure patients were put on a micronutrient supplementation regime for more than half a year.
At the start of the study, 70 percent of the participants had problems performing daily activities, while 30 percent reported moderate limitations.
Micronutrient supplementation improved heart pumping activity and decreased shortness of breath in the participants. It also improved their quality of life.
Eighty percent of the volunteers reported that they no longer experienced irregular heartbeats, while 90 percent of the participants no longer suffered from severe fatigue.
Rath cautioned that conventional heart medications often have negative side effects. These drugs also leach essential nutrients from the body.
To avoid these adverse effects, Rath recommends addressing heart issues naturally by supplementing with CoQ10, magnesium and B-vitamins, as well as antioxidants like alpha-lipoic acid and vitamins C and E.