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Prevent hardening of arteries: Hardening of the arteries Information | Mount Sinai

Atherosclerosis: Prevention Through the Ages

No matter your age, try these steps to prevent hardening of the arteries.

Written by Matthew Hoffman, MD

  • Preventing Atherosclerosis: In Your 20s and 30s
  • Preventing Atherosclerosis: In Your 40s and 50s
  • Preventing Atherosclerosis: In Your 60s and Up
  • Preventing Atherosclerosis: Suitable for All Ages

Atherosclerosis starts early and progresses throughout life. You can’t see or feel it, but in most of us the process is already under way.

The plaques of atherosclerosis can grow to become blood vessel blockages. If a plaque ruptures, the sudden blood clot causes a heart attack or stroke.

Atherosclerosis is common, unpredictable, and potentially deadly. Is there any good news? Because atherosclerosis takes decades to progress, the process can be slowed down at any point, reducing the risk.

Regardless of your age, there are specific steps you can take to slow down atherosclerosis. Take a moment to consider what changes you can make today, to protect your arteries later.

Almost no one develops complications from atherosclerosis at this age. Still, studies show the process has begun by our 20s or even younger. In these studies, risk factors mattered: young people with obesity, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, or who smoked had more-advanced early atherosclerosis.

The American Heart Association recommends seeing your doctor beginning at age 20 to routinely assess your risk for heart disease.

Instead of treating atherosclerosis, the key here is developing good habits that will last a lifetime. Don’t force it; instead, try to imagine how better habits might fit into your life.

Exercise: Make it a hobby to find some physical activity you enjoy. The idea of sticking to a boring, unpleasant exercise schedule for the next 40 years would send anyone to the couch. Experiment with different activities until you find something you like. If you get sick of that, try something else.

Diet: Eating five servings of fruits and vegetables daily is effective at preventing heart disease. Make it a habit to try something different in the produce aisle each time you hit the supermarket.

The rate of developing atherosclerosis accelerates in middle age, and so should your approach to reducing the risk.

Risk factors (high blood pressure or cholesterol, diabetes, obesity, and smoking) become extremely important through these years. Everyone should see a doctor sometime soon after turning 40. He or she can assess your risk factors and provide a treatment plan.

Exercise: If you’ve been sedentary most of your life, you don’t need to run marathons to get a benefit. Any activity is better than none.

  • Start slow and work up to 30 minutes of walking daily.
  • Take the stairs. Walk up one flight, or down two.
  • At the grocery store, park the car at the far end of the lot and walk.
  • Take an extra lap around the mall before heading home.

Diet: Ask each member of your family to choose a favorite (or least-hated) vegetable. Rotate through everyone’s favorite at dinnertime. Toss in a salad, and you’re well on your way to reducing your atherosclerosis risk.

Cut back on the red meat, as well. Keep meat portions small (the size of a deck of cards). Lean, skinless poultry is a great choice.

Don’t use the excuse, “at my age, changing my lifestyle won’t make any difference.” In fact, adopting a healthy lifestyle in middle age reduces the risk of death from atherosclerosis by two-thirds

The near- and post-retirement years should be a time to enjoy oneself. But it’s also a time to think about health risks. The No. 1 threat by far, for both men and women, is atherosclerosis.

The rates of atherosclerosis complications skyrocket after age 65. For example, 85% of deaths from atherosclerosis occur in this age group. But you can reduce this risk dramatically by making changes to your routine.

Risk factors: A large number of people in this age group will need medicines to treat high blood pressure and cholesterol. These medicines make a profound difference, reducing the risk of atherosclerosis dramatically.

Despite the known benefits, studies show that many people stop taking cholesterol medicines after several months, increasing their risk unnecessarily. Don’t be one of them. Discuss any concerns with your doctor, and stick with your treatment plan.

Exercise: Exercise has a stronger beneficial effect in older age than ever before. Find an exercise buddy, roust your spouse off the couch, or start a neighborhood walking club, but get moving!

Atherosclerosis starts early and progresses throughout life. You can’t see or feel it, but in most of us the process is already under way.

The plaques of atherosclerosis can grow to become blood vessel blockages. If a plaque ruptures, the sudden blood clot causes a heart attack or stroke.

Atherosclerosis is common, unpredictable, and potentially deadly. Is there any good news? Because atherosclerosis takes decades to progress, the process can be slowed down at any point, reducing the risk.

Regardless of your age, there are specific steps you can take to slow down atherosclerosis. Take a moment to consider what changes you can make today, to protect your arteries later.

And the single best way to reduce your risk of atherosclerosis, at any age: don’t smoke! If you do smoke, see your doctor: New treatments are available that make it easier to quit.

Top Picks

Can we reduce vascular plaque buildup?

Cholesterol is a fatty substance that occurs naturally in the body, High blood levels of cholesterol encourage the formation and growth of vascular plaques that put you at risk for heart attack and stroke.

What causes arterial plaque?

Plaque forms when cholesterol lodges in the wall of the artery. To fight back, the body sends white blood cells to trap the cholesterol, which then turn into foamy cells that ooze more fat and cause more inflammation. That triggers muscle cells in the artery wall to multiply and form a cap over the area. But the soft plaque beneath the cap is dangerous.

“For example, if your blood pressure spikes, it puts pressure on the thin wall of the plaque, which can break open, form a clot, and cause a heart attack,” says cardiologist Dr. Christopher Cannon, a Harvard Medical School professor. About three of every four heart attacks occur when plaques rupture.

Larger plaques can block blood flow. But they are typically covered by thick, fibrous caps that can resist breaking apart. These are often treated by inserting a wire mesh tube (stent) near the blockage to widen the artery.

Can you unclog your arteries, or reduce plaque buildup?

“Making plaque disappear is not possible, but we can shrink and stabilize it,” says Dr. Cannon.

Doctors target smaller, unstable plaque. “If we have a 30% blockage in the artery from soft plaque, the goal is to try to suck out the cholesterol from the inside, so the plaque shrivels down to 15% and leaves nothing inside it,” says Dr. Cannon.

How do you get the cholesterol out of the plaque? By lowering levels of cholesterol in the blood, where it travels inside particles called lipoproteins. Low-density lipoprotein (LDL) deposits cholesterol into blood vessel walls.

The drugs used most often to reduce LDL cholesterol levels are statins — such as atorvastatin (Lipitor) and rosuvastatin (Crestor). Statins block the liver enzyme that promotes cholesterol production.

Another medication called ezetimibe (Zetia) may be added to inhibit the absorption of cholesterol in the digestive tract. “Shrinking plaques with strong statins has been seen when you get LDL below 70 (mg/dL),” says Dr. Cannon.

Very intensive lifestyle changes have also been shown to shrink plaque. Dr. Cannon recommends that you:

Eat a Mediterranean diet

It can reduce heart disease risk by 30%. It is rich in olive oil, fruits, vegetables, nuts and fish; low in red or processed meats; and moderate in the amounts of cheese and wine you can consume.

Kick the habit

Smoking damages the lining of the arteries. Quitting can help raise HDL levels.


Aerobic exercise can raise HDL, lower blood pressure, burn body fat, and lower blood sugar levels. Exercise combined with weight loss can also lower LDL levels. Aim for 150 minutes per week of moderate-intensity exercise.

Busting the cholesterol myth

Why you can’t live without this tricky substance.

Cholesterol is often vilified as the bad guy, but we need this waxy, fatty substance to make vitamin D, hormones, bile that aids digestion, and the coverings of our cells. The liver produces 75% of the body’s cholesterol, but all cells have the ability to make it.

When cells need more cholesterol, the liver sends it via the bloodstream in packages made of cholesterol on the inside and protein on the outside. These cholesterol-laden particles are known as low-density lipoprotein, or LDL. Too much LDL in the blood can cause cholesterol to lodge in the artery walls and form plaques. That’s why LDL is known as “bad” cholesterol.

Not surprisingly, high levels of cholesterol in the diet raise blood levels of LDL. But high levels of saturated fat in the diet are even more important: they cause the liver to produce lots of LDL cholesterol and send it into the blood.

Whereas LDL particles deposit cholesterol into plaques of atherosclerosis, some high-density lipoprotein (HDL) particles help remove cholesterol from plaques. That’s why it’s often referred to as “good” cholesterol.

How much HDL and LDL should you aim for?

An HDL of 60 milligrams per deciliter (mg/dL) or greater is associated with a lower risk of heart disease. Many doctors prescribe statins and lifestyle changes to get LDL levels below 70 mg/dL in people at high risk of having a heart attack in the next 10 years.

Recent guidelines recommend that statins be prescribed regardless of the LDL level in people at high risk of heart attack because of cardiac risk factors (such as high blood pressure, diabetes, and smoking).


Image: Thinkstock


Atherosclerosis is a blockage or hardening of the arteries that results from the formation of fatty deposits on their inner wall.

This narrows the arteries and restricts blood flow to the heart and other parts of the body.

This article lists 15 foods that can help prevent atherosclerosis.

How Arteries Can Clog

Atherosclerosis is considered to be a major underlying cause of heart disease, including coronary artery disease, the most common type of heart disease.

Atherosclerosis is the main cause of about 50% of deaths in Western countries.

This is a chronic inflammatory disease with many risk factors.

The risk of atherosclerosis is higher if you:

have high LDL (bad) cholesterol

have high blood pressure


have diabetes

have a family history of atherosclerosis

are obese

eat a poor diet

lead a sedentary lifestyle

On the other hand, eating a diet rich in certain foods, such as vegetables, fruits and fish, has been shown to reduce the risk of atherosclerosis and heart disease.

Here are 15 foods that can help prevent atherosclerosis.

  1. Berries

Berries include blueberries, strawberries, cranberries, raspberries and blackberries.

These fruits have impressive health benefits, including their ability to reduce inflammation and improve heart health.

Berries are rich in fiber, vitamins, minerals and plant compounds. These include flavonoid antioxidants, which are known to help improve heart health (5).

Studies have also shown that eating berries significantly reduces risk factors for atherosclerosis, including elevated LDL (bad) cholesterol, blood pressure, and blood sugar levels. Berries can help prevent atherosclerosis by reducing inflammation and cholesterol buildup, improving arterial function, and protecting against cell damage.

  1. Beans

Beans are high in fiber and well known for their heart health benefits. Eating fiber-rich foods such as beans is essential to prevent atherosclerosis.

Eating beans is a great way to control cholesterol levels, thereby reducing the risk of clogged arteries. Many studies have shown that eating beans can significantly lower LDL (bad) cholesterol levels.

One review of 26 high-quality studies found that diets containing about 1 serving (130 grams) of beans per day were associated with significantly lower levels of LDL (bad) cholesterol compared to control diets.

Studies have also shown that a diet rich in beans can lower blood pressure, improve arterial function, and reduce the risk of type 2 diabetes. All of these effects can reduce the risk of atherosclerosis.

  1. Fish

Fish is rich in essential nutrients, including omega-3 fatty acids. Eating fish rich in omega-3s may help reduce the risk of atherosclerosis. Research shows that omega-3 fats help reduce the expression of cell adhesion molecules, which are proteins that allow cells to stick to each other and their surroundings. Your body releases cell adhesion molecules in response to inflammation, and they are the driving force behind atherosclerosis. What’s more, fish consumption has been associated with a reduced risk of atherosclerosis. In a study involving 961 people compared participants who ate less than one serving of fish per week with those who ate two or more servings of fish per week. The study found that 13.3% of people who ate less fish had atherosclerosis in the carotid arteries, which carry blood to the brain, compared to 6. 6% in the fish group.

  1. Tomatoes and tomato products

Tomatoes and tomato products contain plant compounds that may be particularly helpful in reducing the development of atherosclerosis. For example, tomatoes contain the carotenoid pigment lycopene, which can have impressive health benefits.

Research shows that eating lycopene-rich tomato products can help reduce inflammation, increase HDL (good) cholesterol, and reduce the risk of heart disease.

Interestingly, the combination of cooked tomatoes with olive oil may provide the best protection against atherosclerosis. One study in 40 people found that eating tomato sauce with olive oil had the greatest effect on reducing adhesion molecules and inflammatory proteins compared to raw tomatoes and plain tomato sauce. However, all tomato products increased HDL (good) cholesterol and lowered total cholesterol.

  1. Onion

Various types of onions are part of the genus Allium and have a number of useful properties. Studies have shown that a diet rich in these popular vegetables can protect arteries. A 15-year study of 1,226 women aged 70 and over found that higher consumption of onions was associated with a lower risk of atherosclerosis-related death. Onions contain sulfur compounds, which scientists believe may help prevent inflammation of the blood vessels, prevent platelets from accumulating in the blood, and increase the availability of nitric oxide. All of these effects can help protect against atherosclerosis and improve the condition of the arteries.

  1. Citrus fruits

Citrus fruits are delicious and rich in vitamins, minerals and antioxidants, including flavonoids. The flavonoids found in citrus fruits can reduce inflammation and help prevent free radicals from oxidizing LDL (bad) cholesterol in the body. Oxidized LDL is associated with the development and progression of atherosclerosis. This may be why citrus consumption is associated with a reduced risk of heart disease and stroke, two conditions associated with atherosclerosis.

  1. Spices

Spices including ginger, pepper, chili and cinnamon may help protect against atherosclerosis. These and other spices have anti-inflammatory properties and can help get rid of free radicals, improve blood lipid levels, and reduce the buildup of platelets in the blood. You can easily increase your spice intake by adding them to oatmeal, soups, stews, and just about any other dish you can think of.

  1. Flax seeds

Flaxseeds are tiny sources of a lot of nutrients. They are rich in fiber, healthy fats, vitamins and minerals, including calcium and magnesium. In addition to being highly nutritious, flax seeds may help prevent atherosclerosis. One study found that rabbits that ate flax seeds on a high cholesterol diet had a 40% reduction in plaque formation compared to animals that did not eat the seeds. flax. Flax seeds contain secoisolariciresinol diglucoside (SDG), an anti-inflammatory and cholesterol-lowering lignan compound with anti-atherosclerosis properties.

  1. Cruciferous vegetables

Including cruciferous vegetables, such as broccoli, cabbage, and cauliflower, in your diet can help reduce your risk of developing atherosclerosis. Studies show that eating cruciferous vegetables is associated with a reduced risk of atherosclerosis. A study of 1,500 women found that eating cruciferous vegetables was associated with a decrease in carotid intima-media thickness (CIMT). Medical professionals use this measurement to assess the risk of disease associated with atherosclerosis. Research has also linked consumption of cruciferous vegetables to a reduction in arterial calcification and the risk of death caused by atherosclerosis-related disease. Arterial calcification leads to hardening of the arteries in atherosclerosis.

  1. Beetroot

Beets are a rich source of nitrates, which your body converts into nitric oxide, a signaling molecule that plays an important role in your body. Inflammation of the blood vessels leads to a decrease in the production of nitric oxide. Eating foods rich in dietary nitrates such as beets may help improve blood vessel function and reduce inflammation, which may help prevent atherosclerosis. Research has also found an association between dietary nitrate intake and a reduced risk of atherosclerosis-related death.

  1. Oats

Oats are an excellent choice for those who suffer from atherosclerosis or are trying to prevent clogged arteries. Eating oats can help significantly reduce risk factors for atherosclerosis, including high total and LDL (bad) cholesterol. Oats also contain antioxidants called avenanthramides, which can help suppress inflammatory proteins called cytokines as well as adhesion molecules. This may help prevent atherosclerosis.

It may also be helpful to eat oat bran, which is rich in dietary fiber. A study in 716 people with coronary heart disease found that those who regularly consumed oat fiber had lower levels of LDL (bad) cholesterol and inflammatory markers than those who did not eat oat dietary fiber. The study also found that oat fiber intake was associated with a lower risk of needing revascularization, a procedure designed to increase oxygen delivery to the heart and other parts of the body. This may be needed by a person if atherosclerosis interferes with blood flow.

  1. Nuts and seeds

Nuts and seeds are excellent sources of protein, fiber, healthy fats, vitamins and minerals. What’s more, these tiny and versatile foods can help prevent atherosclerosis. Research consistently shows that eating nuts and seeds can significantly reduce risk factors for atherosclerosis. For example, eating nuts and seeds can lower LDL (bad) cholesterol and blood pressure, and increase HDL (good) cholesterol. Research has also shown that eating nuts and seeds lowers blood sugar and may help protect against diabetes, a known risk factor for atherosclerosis. In addition, eating nuts and seeds may help improve blood vessel function and protect against heart disease.

  1. Green leafy vegetables

Green leafy vegetables, including lettuce, kale, arugula, chard, and spinach, are rich in nutrients that may help protect against atherosclerosis. They are a good source of dietary nitrates, which can help improve blood vessel function and reduce inflammation. They are also rich in potassium. This mineral helps prevent vascular calcification, a process that promotes atherosclerosis. In addition, numerous studies have shown that eating green leafy vegetables is a great way to reduce the risk of developing cardiovascular disease. A review of eight studies found that eating green leafy vegetables was associated with a significant reduction in the risk of developing cardiovascular disease, up to 15.8%.

  1. Cocoa and dark chocolate

Cocoa products and dark chocolate are not only tasty, but also help prevent atherosclerosis. A study of 2,217 people found that eating chocolate was associated with fewer atherosclerotic plaques in the coronary arteries. These arteries transport oxygen-rich blood to the heart. Studies have also shown that eating chocolate is associated with a reduced risk of stroke, cardiovascular disease, and diabetes. Moreover, cocoa and dark chocolate are rich in plant polyphenols. They help increase nitric oxide production and reduce inflammation in the arteries, which may help improve physical function in people with atherosclerosis. One study compared the effects of eating dark and milk chocolate in 20 people with peripheral artery disease, a condition caused by atherosclerosis. The study determined that dark chocolate contains more than 85% cocoa. Researchers found that consuming 40 grams of dark chocolate significantly improved walking time and blood nitric oxide levels compared to consuming milk chocolate.

  1. Olive oil

The Mediterranean diet, rich in high-fiber vegetables, beans and olive oil, has long been associated with improved heart health. Olive oil may reduce the risk of atherosclerosis. A 4-month study in 82 people with early atherosclerosis found that daily consumption of 30 ml of olive oil significantly improved participants’ blood vessel function and reduced markers of inflammation. Scientists attribute the ability of olive oil to improve heart and vascular health with a high content of polyphenolic compounds. Keep in mind that unrefined extra virgin olive oil contains significantly more polyphenols than refined olive oil.

A healthy diet rich in nutrients can help reduce the risk of atherosclerosis. Research has shown that including cruciferous vegetables, fish, berries, olive oil, oats, onions, green leafy vegetables, and beans in your diet can be an effective way to prevent atherosclerosis. All of the above products also have many other useful properties. Incorporating them into your daily routine can significantly reduce your risk of developing diseases and improve your overall health.

General practitioner Dvoryakov S.P.

How to deal with atherosclerosis? – Rossiyskaya gazeta

Recent issue



Thematic applications


Recent issue


13. 07.2007 01:00


Atherosclerosis is the main cause of circulatory diseases

Olga Dobromyslova

Acute heart failure, angina pectoris, cerebrovascular accidents, heart attacks, strokes do not spare either the elderly or the young today. Such diagnoses appear in 58 percent of certificates stating death.

Everyone is at risk

Every year there are more and more young people who do not have time to live to thirty. The last diagnosis for them is often the first: after all, outwardly they seemed to be absolutely healthy people. The cause of death is a chronic “undersupply” of oxygen to the tissues of the heart and brain. And at some unexpected moment – its complete cessation.

In the vast majority of cases, oxygen “undernutrition” and blockade is organized by atherosclerosis. The literal translation from Greek is “hardening of gruel”. Porridge – cholesterol (protein-bound fat). The core of cholesterol plaques that disfigure blood vessels consists of it. The nucleus eventually grows into the connective tissue of the vessel injured by the plaque. Various substances, such as calcium, are involved in the formation of plaques. Similar “stalactites” and “stalagmites” are found during the autopsy of men who died in their third decade, in women – in their fourth. But until about the age of 70, men hold the lead in the prevalence of plaques. “Atherosclerotic equality of the sexes” is restored only after eighty – in men and women who died at this and later ages, the quality and “dislocation” of these formations are approximately the same. But, even complicated ones, plaques do not always kill: in many people of mature age, atherosclerosis proceeds sluggishly.

The first symptoms – right after birth

More than half a century ago, American doctors were amazed by the results of one massive pathological examination. The bodies of young soldiers who died in the war in North Korea were subjected to it. In more than half of twenty-year-old boys, the lumen of the arteries feeding the heart, due to atherosclerotic growths, turned out to be twice the norm. But the soldiers during their lifetime were examined more than once, and they did not complain about their health.

Atherosclerosis is invisible for the time being: the symptoms of the diseases generated by it appear when the vessels are already blocked by three quarters. The very first deposits of cholesterol appear when … a person also doesn’t really know how to walk. So-called fat spots, spots and streaks appear in the aortas of half of children under one year old and in almost all (96 percent) aged 4 to 16 years. However, by the time of puberty, all “hints of atherosclerosis” disappear. Almost. Approximately a tenth of them remain in “combat readiness”.

There are rare lucky people who do not have cholesterol plaques and never have. There are also “unfortunates”, for example, owners of the liver, “not able” to recognize and remove cholesterol from the body. As a result, the blood is “overpopulated” with cholesterol, and in this case there can be no talk of any disappearance of fatty stripes and spots by the beginning of adult life.

According to statistics, about one person out of five hundred has an “inept” liver. Predisposition to atherosclerosis can also be caused by other metabolic disorders. Inherited or developed due to diseases, nutritional habits, lifestyle. That is why Americans who have realized the danger are preventing atherosclerosis even in children. After all, even a not too large cholesterol plaque under adverse circumstances (increased blood pressure, physical stress) can crack and tear. And since the plaque “baths in the blood”, a blood clot forms around it – a blood clot. Such a thrombus most often blocks the blood flow.

Atherosclerotic deposits can form in a wide variety of arteries. When the renal artery is damaged, for example, the kidneys become ill. With damage to the arteries of the legs, intermittent claudication develops. (In men, it is usually preceded by the development of impotence. However, this does not mean that every man who limps is impotent.) Plaques, fraught with the formation of blood clots, form mainly in the vessels that feed the heart and brain: in the aorta, coronary and carotid arteries. Moreover, in certain areas – in the zones of branching and folds of blood vessels – places where the blood ejected from the heart is especially “indelicate” in contact with the intravascular lining (it is called the endothelium).

But what delicacy? The heart with each beat (that is, 60 – 70 times per minute) “throws” almost a third of a glass of blood into the same zone of the aorta. Moreover, under such pressure that portion after portion this third of the glass comes into contact with the wall of the vessel at a speed of 25 meters per second. And so all my life…

Cholesterol, which is considered today the worst destroyer of blood vessels, sticks only to damaged areas of the endothelium. And the more of them, the stronger the consequences. Indeed, in a healthy vessel, the endothelium can fight cholesterol, blood clots, and spasms. For example, if, having “tested” the composition of the blood, he “understands” that the vessels need to be expanded – he produces a vasodilator, and then – no hypertension.

Healthy endothelium prevents microorganisms from multiplying in its tissues. And by the way, there are a lot of them in cholesterol plaques. Mostly these are the causative agents of herpes and … colds. We are talking about one of the three known varieties of chlamydia – not the one that is sexually transmitted, but the one that enters the body when people sneeze and cough nearby. It causes acute respiratory infections and pneumonia. And today, research is underway to understand: does chlamydia come into ready-made cholesterol plaques or, on the contrary, take an active part in their formation?

Helpers and accomplices

Diabetes, nervous, hormonal disorders, metabolic disturbances, and diseases of the digestive system contribute to damage to the endothelium and the development of plaques. All this is a consequence of a violation of humoral regulation, that is, the coordination of processes occurring in the body through its liquid media (blood, lymph, tissue fluid). And the nervous system controls the entire regulation. When its balance is disturbed, the systems fail.

However, more often than not, the balance is upset not so much because of life circumstances, but because of our reaction to them. The best neuro-hormonal background provides the type of human response, which we call the word “goodwill.” It is goodwill and calmness that give a chance for healing. After all, atherosclerotic plaques in the body not only form, but also disintegrate, “resolve”, and the disturbed endothelium is still restored. If you start living in such a way that the process of restoration goes faster than the process of destruction, the disease can be controlled.

By the way

The “French” paradox

Residents of the Mediterranean countries are usually distinguished by good health. This is helped by the features of their cuisine – fresh fruits and vegetables, whole grains. But there is something that does not fit into the concept of a healthy diet. For example, researchers have long tried to understand the “French” paradox. The gist of it is simple: the French consume as much, if not more, saturated fat as Americans, but the death rate from heart disease for men in France is less than 40 percent of the same rate for America. Why?

Most likely, the local dry red wine, which many of them drink one or two glasses a day, helps to protect themselves from heart disease. This is most likely due to the substance resveratrol, which produces red and black grapes during the ripening process to protect themselves from the fungus. This substance is essentially a natural pesticide. But as a result of animal experiments conducted in Japan, it was found that resveratrol, in addition, helps to reduce the content of fat and cholesterol in the blood.

Citrus fruits also fight against fat and cholesterol, in particular pectin, which is extracted from grapefruit. Pectin is a soluble fiber found only in citrus fruits themselves, but not in juice. In an experiment conducted by researchers on animals fed a high-fat diet for a year, pectin-treated and atherosclerotic patients had 62% fewer plaques on vessel walls than in the control group.


1 percent of all deaths were due to cardiovascular disease in 1900. From the mid-60s, atherosclerosis began to rapidly advance. Today, heart and vascular diseases are the cause of more than half of all deaths in the world.


How to help yourself without drugs

A few simple ways to prevent the disease

How to deal with atherosclerosis? To remove excess fat and cholesterol from the body, there are special drugs. But, like any medicine, they come with side effects.

Fortunately, atherosclerosis is very responsive to non-drug treatments and prevention. Responsive to such an extent that even the World Health Organization recommends using them in the first place. Scientists assure that atherosclerosis is a disease of everyone, and cancer is by choice. That is, these diseases are based on the same disorders.

Calmness, and only calmness!

We have already said that benevolence, as a character trait, helps to prevent illness. How do you treat people and yourself? Here are some more tips.

1. In difficult life situations, try not to lose confidence. Remember that a depressed state of mind knocks all body systems out of rhythm.

2. See your doctor regularly to check your cholesterol levels.

3. Check your blood pressure frequently.

4. Move more. This helps to balance all the processes in the body and fight excess weight.

5. Quit smoking. Nicotine destroys the endothelium. The amino acid taurine helps to neutralize the effect of nicotine at least partially – it is especially abundant in fatty fish. Enough 100 grams of such fish per day.

Do not turn food into an enemy

To prevent atherosclerosis, you should limit the consumption of egg yolks, liver, kidneys, brains, lard, butter, sour cream and fatty meats.

The milk you consume should contain no more than 1 percent fat.

Food should be cooked only with vegetable oil (sunflower or olive).

From meat products skinless chicken and turkey, young lamb, veal, lean beef are preferred.

I need to eat more fish. Fatty is especially good, but any boiled and stewed is useful – preferably not fried or salted.

The basis of the diet should be plant foods: vegetables, peas, beans, lentils, cereals, fruits.

It is good to include the following gifts of nature in salads and teas:

beets, apples, garlic;

blackcurrant, seaweed;

cabbage, onion, garlic, cranberries, strawberries;

dandelion, clover, acacia flowers;

linden, raspberry, wild strawberry, black currant leaves;

larch needles, hop cones;

beet leaves, carrots, radishes, radishes, celery, rhubarb, asparagus.

Dressing salads is better with sour milk, horseradish, applesauce.

Herbal recipes

But in order to be treated with “herbs for atherosclerosis”, you need to know all their properties well, and all your diseases too. Take, for example, plantain. It fights bacteria superbly, but it can dramatically lower blood pressure. And suddenly it is already low for you? And plantain will lower it when you drive or cross the road? That is why competent herbalists treat not one, but several (sometimes 10 – 15) herbs at once. Herbs mutually extinguish possible undesirable effects. But remember: on your own, according to the book, it is dangerous to make a collection for yourself. Herbs can do a lot, but only under the supervision of a competent specialist.

And one more thing: the manifestations of atherosclerosis are many-sided and, as already mentioned, are noticeable mainly only at the serious stages of the disease.