Hardening of the arteries occurs when cholesterol containing plaque builds on the inside of artery walls. The reason the plaque is there is to try to repair the artery wall after it has been damaged by free radicals. These narrowed arteries can slow blood flow and cause blood clots which can then result in heart attack or stroke. All is not lost! All we need to do is take a lesson from our great great grandparents and then bring it up-to-date. Our ancestors did many things we don’t do today; they ate from a garden and had plenty of green, yellow and red fruits and vegetables; they ate from their orchard including walnuts and other nuts. All these foods are rich in antioxidants which clean up free radicals (the culprit that started this whole chain of events). They also ate whole wheat bread which was high in fiber (can reduce cholesterol) and Vitamin E (the best antioxidant for atherosclerosis).
Now let’s fast forward to today. Most people don’t have a garden, they rely on the grocery store where the food is grown by conglomerate farms, not for its nutrition, but for its weight and its ability to travel and store well. Sliced white bread took over. Even though whole grain breads are available they and white bread are made with genetically modified wheat and packed with anti-fungal chemicals so the bread doesn’t mold. True, these breads are fortified but with synthetic vitamins not your body’s favorite food. What I’m saying is that we have more damaging pollutants than our ancestors did and fewer resources to counteract them.
If I can encourage you to grow a garden, you will be taking a giant step in the right direction. Our lifestyles don’t always allow that so at least buy organically grown produce and meat. You’ll get full nutrition and antioxidant value for your money and a step towards better health. You can also take supplements. The best antioxidant for your arteries is Vitamin E. An herb that helps to reduce plaque in arteries is alfalfa. Read my page on Antioxidants for a list of additional valuable supplements