Getting to the cause
Cholesterol is clearly on the radar of GP’s as a primary treatment strategy for CVD with Statins successfully marketed as the number one go to. Yet a growing body of research points in another direction – to redox imbalances and inflammation as primary upstream causes of CVD.

The Superoxide assault
The assault from oxidative and inflammatory triggers begins with the formation of the superoxide radical. Modern habits of inappropriate dietary carbohydrates and fats, combined with a sedentary lifestyle only serves to multiply this threat. Fortunately, our bodies do have powerful built-in mechanisms to deal with superoxide and other oxidative radicals.

SOD to the rescue
Research over the past decades has revealed that two endogenous antioxidant enzymes, Superoxide dismutase (SOD) and Glutathione peroxide (GPx), ‘knock out’ the superoxide radical at enormously rapid and lifesaving rates.

Unfortunately, some of us produce SOD and GPx at a diminished rate due to illness, genetics or age. This exposes our blood vessels to direct oxidative damage, in part via the impact of oxidised LDL cholesterol and the development of atherosclerosis.

Turning up the Natural Defences
The transcription factor, Nrf2 is a cellular ‘switch’ that induces the expression of over 2,000 genes involved in activating cellular defences – many antioxidant defences included. Sulforaphane from bioactive broccoli sprout powder is the most potent natural activator of Nrf2 and as such, is a potent tool in managing the fundamental processes associated with cellular defences.

Activating the Antioxidant Enzymes
Another nutrigenomically-active material developed in France acts to specifically double the production of SOD in the body within 28 days. In a three-year study1, this melon-derived material (GliSODin), produced a significant reduction in carotid artery thickening – a preclinical risk factor for cardiovascular disease. In a similar study2, a statin drug, rosuvastatin, simply slowed the progression of the intimal medial thickening that characterises atherosclerosis.

This positions GliSODin as a very potent upstream therapeutic intervention for cardiovascular disease.

Vitamin K2 and Sensoril
Another potent tool in the prevention of cardiovascular disease is a combination of Vitamin K2 (Mena Q 7) and Sensoril (a patented blend of withanolides).

In another three-year study3, 180mcg daily of the Mena Q 7 demonstrated a clear ability to reduce arterial stiffness in postmenopausal women. In separate 8- and 12-week studies, Sensoril showed clinically significant improvement in a number of risk factors associated with cardiovascular disease and metabolic syndrome.5

These include lowering arterial resistance, blood pressure, oxidative stress, inflammation, cortisol and blood lipids, plus an increase in nitric oxide and DHEA.4,5

The holistic approach
Diet and lifestyle recommendations should always head up the script for cardiovascular disease along with a holistic focus on treating the cause.

GliSODin and a combination of Vitamin K2 and Sensoril are a targeted approach to quenching the drivers of cardiovascular disease; redox imbalance and inflammation.

Better still, it’s not just the cells of the cardiovascular system that benefit; all the cells of the body will benefit from a reduced inflammatory and oxidative burden.

References
(1) Cloarec M et al. Glisodin®, A Vegetal SOD With Gliadin, As Preventative Agent Vs. Atherosclerosis, as confirmed With Carotid Ultrasound-B Imaging. Eur. Annals of Allergy and Clinical Immunology Vol. 39(2); 2007

(2) Crouse JR et al. The Meteor Trial JAMA 2007;297:1344-1353

(3) 4 Knapen MH et al. Menaquinone-7 supplementation improves arterial stiffness in healthy postmenopausal women. A double-blind randomised clinical trial. Thromb Haemost. 2015 May;113(5):1135-44.

(4) Auddy B et al. A Standardized Withania Somnifera Extract Significantly Reduced Stress-Related Parameters in Chronically-Stressed Humans: A Double-Blind, Randomized, Placebo-Controlled Study. JANA Vol. 11(1):2008.50-56

(5) Usharani P et al. Evaluation of a highly standardized Withania Somnifera Extract on Endothelial Dysfunction and Biomarkers of Oxidative Stress in Patients With Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus: A Randomized, Double Blind, PlaceboControlled Study. Int.J.Ayur.Pharma Research. 2014;2(3):22-32