Jack and Pam are empty nesters. They were looking forward to enjoying their new-found freedom when Jack had a stroke. All of a sudden, he was seriously hindered from enjoying many of the things he was looking forward to doing. He now has to use a walker, his memory is slipping, he can barely use his left hand, and he struggles to care for himself. Now, instead of enjoying their time together, Pam is more of a caretaker and they both feel stuck.
If you want to avoid Jack and Pam’s situation, you’ve got to take steps now to avoid a stroke. Fortunately, there are four nutrients you can use to virtually wipeout your stroke risk.
Jack was fortunate. Strokes kill. But he survived. Unfortunately, strokes can leave you debilitated, mentally and physically unable to live an independent life. That’s why most people think the possibility of having a stroke is a lot scarier than having a heart attack.
The best thing you can do is to prevent the stroke in the first place. But even if you eat the right foods and exercise regularly, you could still have a stroke. And nearly 70% of stroke survivors have major impairment. The four nutrients I’m about to tell you about can wipe out your risk of having a stroke. And, if for some unforeseen reason you still have a stroke, you’ll be far more likely to survive the stroke, and you’ll minimize the damage.
So how can you avoid a stroke? To find the best way to do this, scientists took animals and pre-treated them with various nutrients and drugs. Then they mimic the damage by inducing stroke. This gives us an idea of which nutrients and/or drugs are protective. One nutrient stands head and shoulders above the rest in this area. That nutrient is coenzyme Q10.
The remarkable results obtained for animal models of stroke using CoQ10 have not been seen with any other substance. CoQ10’s exceptional antioxidant and free-radical quenching properties offer great hope in the treatment of stroke injury.
How Well Does It Work?
Just look at what it did for Betty, a 69-year-old woman who suffered with some short-term memory loss and had recently been diagnosed with type 2-diabetes. She wasn’t able to control her blood sugar levels successfully through diet. Her doctor gave her some nutrition counseling and advised her that if her blood sugar could not be stabilized, she would need to begin taking insulin. She agreed to work on her diet. She also began taking 100 mg of Ubiquinol daily.
Ubiquinol is the more bio-available form of CoQ10. Studies show that it raised plasma levels of CoQ10 by 62% more than conventional CoQ10.
Four weeks later, Betty fell on the pavement and hit her head. She suffered a bifrontal cerebral hemorrhage where her head hit during the fall. In only a few days, the injury improved rapidly and she was released to return home.
Two weeks later she returned to the hospital in an ambulance after fainting at her home. She had fallen hard, was unconscious, and slipped into a coma. Her blood glucose level was over 600, a factor that probably caused the fainting spell.
To assess her fall-related injuries, her doctor ordered a CT scan of her head. The CT scan showed that she had a temporal lobe hemorrhage, probably as a result of the fall. But the cerebral hemorrhage from two weeks earlier had completely healed!
The doctors controlled her blood sugar with insulin and she recovered rather quickly. She was oriented to name and place in about 10 days, but could not identify the year or the president. By that time, she was able to feed herself and was eating 100% of her meals. On her 10th hospital day, she was discharged to a skilled nursing facility.
Two days later, she was alert and talkative. She was still unable to name the president, but she easily talked about events from the distant past. She identified common objects and moved about without difficulty. Her short-term memory was still very poor. But even in the face of two major head traumas and a coma, she had no motor or sensory deficits. Despite sustaining numerous injuries, including a bifrontal cerebral hemorrhage, an epidural hemorrhage, diabetic ketoacidosis and coma, this patient was able to return to her pre-injury state with no neurologic complications.
There is nothing different about this woman compared to many other 69-year olds. She’s diabetic, eats a poor diet, and does not follow medical advice. The only unusual thing was the 100 mg dose of Ubiquinol. This could be the reason her injuries seemed to have no lasting effect.
Here’s the Proof
Researchers have demonstrated CoQ10’s brain protective effect (both before and after a stroke) in animal studies. They’ve studied the effects of CoQ10 on stroke victims since 1972. And they’ve studied how well it works in dogs, rats, and gerbils. In all of their studies, CoQ10 was the only agent that gave complete protection. It was over two times more effective than the next best agent (naloxone). Some of the animals were treated before the stroke – and some after (within 12 hours). And CoQ10 worked in both cases, though it’s more effective if you take it before and after.
It makes sense that CoQ10 would work just as well for people. CoQ10 improves the function of mitochondria, the “powerhouses” that produce energy in cells. CoQ10 is an important link in the chain of chemical reactions that produces this energy. It also is a potent antioxidant, a chemical that “mops up” potentially harmful chemicals in your body. Earlier studies showed that CoQ10 slows the functional deterioration in patients with Parkinson’s disease, leaving little doubt that the compound protects brain function.
While any form of CoQ10 can protect your brain, Ubiquinol is far preferable to regular CoQ10. So make sure you’re taking 100 mg of Ubiquinol CoQ10 every day. If you don’t supplement with CoQ10, you could have irreversible damage to your brain, other organs, and mitochondria everywhere in the body.
Before I tell you about the next nutrient, let me tell you about Don. Don knew this nutrient could stop strokes. So he took the nutrient religiously. Then the news came. Don was in the emergency room having suffered a devastating stroke. What happened?
When asked, he was embarrassed. With a droopy lisp, he said, "I stopped taking it six months ago."
That six months without the nutrient was long enough to allow the stroke to occur. So what could have stopped the stroke? Quite simply, the very common, inexpensive nutrient niacin.
Niacin, as you may know, is vitamin B3. It's well-known for causing a sometimes uncomfortable flushing when you take it. But there's a lot of science behind its health benefits. It's invaluable for lowering your cholesterol and protecting your heart, your brain, and your eyes. Just how well can it prevent strokes?
Nearly four years ago, a study came out saying niacin doesn't work for preventing strokes or heart attacks. But the study used slow-release niacin, which isn't very effective. It's essentially an adulterated form of the nutrient. So that study didn't show us much of anything about using regular niacin.
Back in 2008, a study of the literature showed that niacin can be extremely useful in preventing stroke. The review found clear evidence that niacin is effective at raising HDL cholesterol levels. Furthermore, the authors of the study said it's also effective at "reducing cardiovascular events in individuals with high vascular risk and can be used for treatment of stroke patients with low serum HDL." The authors said niacin should be used to prevent strokes.
So if you want to prevent a stroke, take regular niacin (2,000 mg) every day.
A few years ago, I told you two incredible stories. One was about the coal miner in West Virginia who almost died after a mining accident. The other was about a teenager who suffered a severe brain injury in a car accident. Neither accident victim was supposed to recover. But both of them miraculously did. And both of them used the same protocol.
The primary ingredient in their treatment was fish oil. Used in conjunction with oxygen, the fish oil healed damaged brain tissue like the doctors had never seen. So here's the important question: Can taking fish oil with niacin have a similar effect? And can the combination prevent strokes?
The answer is absolutely yes! The success both of the accident victims experienced came largely because the oxygen therapy they used (hyperbaric oxygen therapy, or HBO) opened the capillaries in their brain tissue and allowed the fish oil to enter and work its magic. This is why it’s important to take niacin with fish oil. Much like oxygen opens the blood vessels up, niacin also opens the capillaries, allowing the fish oil to penetrate further and work more effectively. HBO has a slight advantage in that it adds pressure to the oxygen, pushing it through and making it more effective. If you have brain damage, it would be the better way to go.
But if you don't have brain damage, studies show that fish oil alone can help reduce your risk of stroke. Take it with niacin, though, and it can have an even more dramatic effect. A healthy brain can have the capillaries opened without the pressure of HBO and allows the healthy flow of fish oil to the smallest regions of your brain.
Add some healthy plant oils to the fish oil, such as those found in Complete Daily Oils, and you could have the perfect anti-stroke and anti-dementia cocktail. Remember, it takes 2 grams of niacin and regular doses of fish oil to really see the effect you want.
Strokes typically occur because of a blood clot in the brain. The cause of blood clots is the accumulation of fibrin in your blood vessels. Fibrin is what helps your blood clot so you don’t bleed to death. But when it gathers inside your blood vessels, it can cause a clot that shuts off blood flow. This can lead to a heart attack, stroke, or other potentially fatal problems. So the key to keeping your blood vessels free and your blood flowing is to keep the fibrin from collecting on the walls of your arteries. And several studies show how you can do just that.
Researchers in over 17 studies have found that an enzyme from fermented soy can keep fibrin from accumulating in your blood vessels. The enzyme is nattokinase. Most of these studies focus on animals. In one of them, rats with a clot in their carotid artery regained 62% of their blood flow. But does it work in people? A study out of Oklahoma State University says yes.
Researchers from the university teamed up with JCR Pharmaceuticals and Miyazaki Medical College to test nattokinase. They gave 12 healthy Japanese volunteers (six men and six women, between the ages of 21 and 55) 200 grams of natto before breakfast. The researchers tracked fibrinolytic activity with a series of blood plasma tests. They found that the natto did indeed dissolve blood clots. And it did so rapidly!
In fact, the researchers measured how long it took to dissolve a clot using an ELT test. Within two hours of taking the natto, their test results dropped by 48%. And the numbers continued to drop for eight hours.
But does it work over the long haul? Let me tell you about my good friend Michael. He started taking statins a few years ago when a scan showed he had some plaque accumulation on one of his arteries. His cardiologist put him on the statins even though his cholesterol numbers were normal. He was concerned about the plaque. Michael was concerned about the statins and their terrible side effects. After a few months, the scan showed no difference in the plaque accumulation. So he stopped taking the statins and started taking natto. He’s taken the nutrient for over a year (since his last scan). The result?
He just had another scan and his arteries are completely clear. No accumulation of plaque at all! His cardiologist was amazed. Needless to say, Michael was thrilled.
All of this means you can significantly decrease your risk of having clogged blood vessels or a stroke by taking at least 50 mg of nattokinase every day.
And you can virtually wipeout your risk of having a stroke by taking all four of these nutrients. It’s your best protection against a scary, debilitating, and even life-threatening event.
Natto-Traditional Japanese Fermented Soy Beans with Recently Discovered Health Benefits and Novel Industrial Applications, Enzyme Wave, Volume 3, June 2002, Amano Enzyme, Inc., page 2-4.
Zhang W1, Hu X, Yang W, Gao Y, Chen J. "Omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acid supplementation confers long-term neuroprotection against neonatal hypoxic-ischemic brain injury through anti-inflammatory actions," Stroke. 2010 Oct;41(10):2341-7. doi: 10.1161/STROKEAHA.110.586081. Epub 2010 Aug 12.