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Heart attack: Diet ‘high in flavanoids’ could ‘protect’ you from stroke and heart attack



There are several indicators that you simply’re prone to a heart attack or stroke. A high level of “bad” cholesterol in your blood is one sign. But one other is high levels of calcium in your blood vessels. But recent research published yesterday has found that foods and beverages “high in flavanoids”, including black tea, green tea, berries, and more can provide “protection” against the buildup of calcium.

Heart attacks and strokes are frequently brought on by fatty substances becoming lodged in your artery partitions, which block blood flow through them.

In a stroke, it is the arteries feeding your brain with oxygen that becomes blocked. This causes entire regions of the brain to die. And in a heart attack, it is the arteries feeding your heart that get blocked.

Calcium is an indication of fat buildup in your arteries (plaque), as calcium is present in these deposits.

Professor Cathy Shanahan, a Professor of Cellular Signalling at King’s College London, explains: “You might have probably heard of the term ‘hardening of the arteries’ – this is similar thing as calcification. The calcium forms hard crystals within the blood vessel wall.”

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But a study, published yesterday within the journal Arteriosclerosis, Thrombosis, and Vascular Biology, suggests that this process could also be slowed down by eating flavonoids.

It found that folks who consumed a better intake of the flavonoids, or two sorts of specific flavonoids were between 36 to 39 percent less prone to have an intensive calcium buildup in the most important artery within the body – often known as the abdominal aorta.

The abdominal aorta moves blood from the guts to most of the organs around your tummy area and your lower limbs. Previously, researchers have shown that the buildup of calcium within the abdominal aorta is a marker of widespread fatty buildup within the blood vessels around your body. They’ve also found that it will probably be used to predict if individuals are going to have problems with their blood vessels or heart.

The leading writer of the study, Ben Parmenter, of the Edith Cowan University Nutrition and Health Innovation Research Institute, explained where most individuals can get flavonoids from.


He said: “In most populations, a small group of foods and beverages — uniquely high in flavonoids — contribute the majority of total dietary flavonoid intake.”

“The fundamental contributors are frequently black or green tea, blueberries, strawberries, oranges, red wine, apples, raisins/grapes and dark chocolate.”

Flavonoids are chemicals known to have several advantages for the immune system. They’ve been shown to assist drive down inflammation and protect your cells from oxidative damage.

The study, supported by the US charity The Heart Foundation, checked out 881 elderly women with a mean age of 80.

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Most of those women were getting their flavonoid content from black tea. Compared with the ladies who didn’t drink tea, individuals who had two-to-six cups per day had 16 to 42 percent less probability of getting extensive calcium buildup of their fundamental artery.

However the researchers emphasise that even none tea drinkers had plenty of advantages.

“Out of the ladies who don’t drink black tea, higher total non-tea flavonoid intake also appears to guard against extensive calcification of the arteries,” Parmenter said.

“This means flavonoids from sources aside from black tea could also be protective against AAC when tea just isn’t consumed.”

Nevertheless, the study did have some caveats. Certain sources of flavonoids, including fruit juice, red wine, and chocolate, didn’t show a major link.

What else are you able to do should you’re apprehensive about your heart?

Although this study shows flavonoids may help, there are other lifestyle changes you’ll be able to make to chop your risk of heart attack or stroke.

One is to reduce on foods containing high levels of saturated fat, including hard cheeses, meat pies, and processed meat. Saturated fat is thought to forestall your body from removing “bad” cholesterol out of your blood – allowing it to accumulate.

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