|Emma McGowan NatureCity author & contributor|
A simple change in diet toward one that is low in grains, beans, and vegetables in the nightshade family, combined with “anti-aging supplements,” may improve blood vessel function and reduce the risk of endothelial dysfunction.
Endothelial dysfunction is a condition in which the cells on the interior wall of your blood vessels malfunction. It is thought to play a major role in the development of atherosclerosis.
Participants in the study included 200 individuals between the ages of 51 and 86, 40% of whom were women. All of the participants had risk factors for blood vessel disease and 72% had endothelial dysfunction.
Over the course of six months, the participants consumed a diet consisting of a large amount of leafy green vegetables, olive oil, shellfish, and grass-fed animal proteins. They also ate fewer grains, legumes, nightshades, and fruits.
In addition to the change in diet, the participants also took supplements consisting of 2,000 to 4,000 mg of DHA omega-3s, 200 mg of grape seed extract, and 50 mg of Pycnogenol. Previous research suggests that these supplement slow cell aging.
At the conclusion of the study, all of the participants had higher endothelial reactivity scores. The average score at baseline was 1.88 and after six months it rose to 2.25. Additionally, only 20% of the participants still had endothelial dysfunction after six months.
Researchers from the Center for Restorative Medicine in Palm Springs, California, conducted the study. It was presented at the American Heart Association’s Arteriosclerosis, Thrombosis and Vascular Biology 2013 Scientific Sessions the week of May 1, 2013.
Previous research has suggested that supplements of CoQ10, aged garlic, and ashwagandha may all improve endothelial dysfunction as well.