Arteriosclerosis - What Is It, What Does It Do, And How Can I Prevent It ?
Many of us have heard of arteriosclerosis before. Now that is one big word. For the sake of simplicity, we will note here that there are subtle differences in these terms that get into complex medical terminology, but for our intents and purposes, the terms arteriosclerosis, atherosclerosis, and hardening of the arteries will all refer to the same dangerous condition.
What is it? Literally "athero" or "arterio" meaning "of the arteries" and "sclerosis", meaning "hardening", atherosclerosis refers to a group of disorders that cause our arterial walls to thicken and narrow.
Our arteries are essential for carrying oxygenated blood from our heart and lungs to the rest of our body. They must flow freely for good health, oxygenation, and nutrient delivery throughout our body.
When the arteries are narrowed, this causes many problems. What causes this narrowing?
Arteriosclerosis doesn't happen overnight, and it has several stages.
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An artery wall has three layers- a tough epithelium, or outer layer, a thick muscular endothelium, or middle layer, and a delicate endothelium, or inner layer.
Since the inner layer is directly exposed to the circulating blood, thin streaks of fatty deposits can build up on this arterial wall. If your arteries are healthy, they can naturally combat this process.
If they are not healthy, then circulating fats are oxidized, becoming sticky, and deposit on the lining of the artery. You can learn more about oxidation, or oxidative stress, by clicking
Resulting inflammation sets in as the body tries to fight this destructive process. To try to heal the damage, the body deposits platelets, calcium, and scar tissue over this layer of sticky fat.
This dangerous mixture is called plaque, and the process repeats itself, with more oxidized fats, then more platelets, calcium, and scar tissue until the the artery becomes clogged to the point where we have atherosclerosis.
At this point, the blood flow to the rest of your body is compromised, which deprives your organs and muscles of necessary oxygen and nutrients.
It takes years for this process to reach this point. Many consider arteriosclerosis to be a normal part of the
process in the developed world. But it is not, and it is largely preventable.
To learn more about cholesterol, its role in atherosclerosis, and the difference between HDL and LDL cholesterol, please click
There is a term for this process that makes fat stick to arterial walls in the first place. It is called lipid peroxidation, and it is the oxidation of fats. This makes our fat rancid, or go bad, and leads to arteriosclerosis.
That isn't the worst of it. Lipid peroxidation and the resulting arteriosclerosis is a leading cause of the two biggest killers in the world today- heart disease and stroke.
How does atherosclerosis lead to heart disease?
The poor circulation affects all organs in your body , including the brain, kidneys, eyes, and extremities, but it especially affects your heart.
If the restriction gets narrow enough, blood flow can actually be blocked off in a coronary artery, and this results in a heart attack. Atherosclerosis also leads to high blood pressure, which places even further strain on the heart.
You may be familiar with cholesterol lowering drugs, and operations like angioplasty that squashes this plaque against the arterial wall so the restriction is relieved. But this is only a temporary fix.
To gain real relief that addresses the real cause of the problem, you must give attention to why the process is occurring in the first place.
How does arteriosclerosis lead to stroke?
In much the same way, restricted blood flow leaves organs and muscles deprived of oxygen and nutrients. A stroke, however involves your brain, not your heart. It is caused by blocked blood flow that specifically deprives your brain of oxygen.
As with heart disease, it bears repeating that to gain real relief that addresses the real cause of the problem, you must give attention to why the process is occurring in the first place.
So this is not a subject that any of us can afford to accept as a natural part of aging, nor can we afford to ignore it any longer. We must prevent this process in the first place if we and our loved ones want to live a long healthy life.
Is there something that can help us? What is the root of the problem? I am so glad you asked.....
Arteriosclerosis - Caused By Low Glutathione Levels
Very simply, the root cause of arteriosclerosis is low glutathione levels. Why do I say that?
Remember how we mentioned earlier, "If your arteries are healthy, they can naturally combat this process?"
Much depends on how high your levels of glutathione are. To learn more about glutathione, what it is, and what it does, please click
for a brief review.
in our cells is glutathione. Antioxidants are essential for combating oxidative stress.
This is true of our arteries, as well as our red blood cells and platelets. They all need antioxidants, such as Vitamin C and E to do their job, but they especially need high glutathione levels as this recycles other antioxidants, making them work harder and last longer.
Thus, the role of reducing oxidative stress is crucial to our preventing arteriosclerosis. In addition to a healthy diet and lifestyle, the best way to reduce oxidative stress is to keep your glutathione levels high.
Arteriosclerosis - How Does Glutathione Help?
Here are some ways that raising glutathione may help to fight against arteriosclerosis, based on Dr. Jimmy Gutman's latest bestseller
This is not new information. Note what this journal had to say over 15 years ago, in 1994:
"It is well known that aging is accompanied by a precipitous fall in glutathione levels. Lower glutathione levels are implicated in many diseases associated with
including cataracts, Alzheimer's Disease, Parkinson's, atherosclerosis, and others."
- Journal of Clinical Epidemiology 47:1021-26 1994
On a similar note, note what this medical journal had to say about the role of glutathione in preventing hardening of the arteries just two years later:
"Raised glutathione levels fight the oxidation of circulating fats in the bloodstream, including cholesterol, retarding the process of plaque formation in the arteries - the underlying cause for most heart disease and stroke."
- Nutrition Reviews 54:1-30, 1996
Can you follow the path to see how one leads to the other?
Oxidative Stress - Lipid Peroxidation - Arteriosclerosis - Heart Disease and Stroke - Death
Reverse it all with one simple antioxidant - Glutathione!
In conclusion, glutathione’s role as an antioxidant to prevent arteriosclerosis and resulting disease cannot be overstated.
Glutathione has been shown to diminish the oxidation of fats or lipid peroxidation, decrease circulating cholesterol, minimize the inflammatory response, stabilize platelets and protect the sensitive lining of the arteries.
These are all very important ways to combat hardening of the arteries and subsequent heart disease.
Arteriosclerosis is largely a preventable disease. It is not a natural consequence of the aging process. It is a very dangerous condition. Our body makes the protective antioxidant glutathione to address this condition.
Strategies for raising glutathione should be implemented along with a responsible diet and life-style. If implemented, one person at a time, we can reverse this all too common illness.
Raise and sustain your glutathione - your arteries will thank you!
Author's Note: Share this with a loved one- and they will live to thank you. I can't bring my father back, but you can prevent someone else from being taken away too early like
Whose life can you save today?
Dr. Jimmy Gutman is the world's most published author on the subject of glutathione. His current bestseller is entitled "Glutathione - Your Key To Health."