My guest today is Pamela Seefeld, a registered pharmacist who prefers to dispense medicinal plants and other natural substances instead of prescription drugs. We’ll be talking your heart and some not-so-widely-known dangers that can cause problems. Plus, as always, Pamela will tell us how you can help your heart be healthy and strong, naturally. Pamela has more than 25 years experience choosing and selling top quality medicinal supplements, so she’s seen it all. Pamela is a 1990 graduate of the University of Florida College of Pharmacy, where she studied Pharmacognosy (the study of medicines derived from plants and other natural sources). She has worked as an integrative pharmacist teaching physicians, pharmacists and the general public about the proper use of botanicals. She is also a grant reviewer for NIH in Washington D.C. and the owner of Botanical Resource and Botanical Resource Med Spa in Clearwater, Florida. www.botanicalresource.com
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TOXIC FREE TALK RADIO
The Hidden Dangers Affecting Your Heart and How You Can Protect It Naturally
Host: Debra Lynn Dadd
Guest: Pamela Seefeld, RPh
Date of Broadcast: September 09, 2015
DEBRA: Hi! I’m Debra Lynn Dadd and this is Toxic Free Talk Radio where we talk about how to thrive in a toxic world and live toxic free.
It’s Wednesday, September 9th, 2015. The sun is shining here in Clearwater, Florida. It’s a beautiful early autumn day.
You know what? I’ll just say this. It’s going to come up on September 21st. It will be the first day of autumn. But actually, that’s the middle of autumn. Autumn actually starts somewhere in the middle of August. As the sun changes angle and the days start getting shorter and cooler, you get this midpoint. It’s just the difference between looking at nature and looking at our civil calendar, which doesn’t have anything to do with nature at all.
But I like to be connected with nature, so I look at time by the solstices and the equinoxes. So we’re moving towards that autumn equinox where the days are equal and the nights will start being longer than the days. I just think it’s a lovely way to look at time.
So I’m very aware of the angle being different of the sun now and that it gets dark here in Florida around 6:00 now instead of 9:00. It makes a big difference.
Anyway, that’s not the subject of the show, but I just like to talk about that. Today, we’re going to be actually talking about your heart and some hidden dangers that can be affecting your heart that you might not be aware of.
My guest is Pamela Seefeld. She is a registered pharmacist who prefers to dispense medicinal plants and other natural substances instead of prescription drugs. Hi, Pamela.
PAMELA SEEFELD: I am happy to be here.
DEBRA: Thank you. I’m happy that you’re here too. I think we just need to keep saying over and over again that drugs are really designed to alleviate symptoms and not to cure the underlying thing that’s happening. So I think what we’re going to be talking about today are some of those things that your doctor probably will never tell you and may not even know. But these are things that we can be paying attention to on a daily basis as we have awareness of what’s going on in our own bodies and things that we can be doing day to day.
PAMELA SEEFELD: Yeah, absolutely.
DEBRA: Yeah, good. So where would you like to start?
PAMELA SEEFELD: I did a MedLine search since we were talking about hidden dangers and what are some things that we should be doing or shouldn’t be doing that affect our heart. And so, this is really current published information. Actually, I only went back six months. With everything currently published, this is what we’re seeing as far as the data.
What I found that was very interesting is that inflammation, chronic inflammation is definitely associated with cardiovascular disease. We know this. The reason why it’s associated with cardiovascular disease is it’s not just the myocardium or the heart itself as far as infarction, but it can lead to unstable angina. It can lead to sudden cardiac death stroke and peripheral thrombosis. And what that peripheral thrombosis is are clots that lodge and causes what’s called the deep vein thrombosis. So, these are all directly related to the inflammatory processes in the body.
So treating inflammation…
DEBRA: Wait, let’s talk about inflammation. Could you explain because we hear this word a lot? Could you explain exactly what inflammation is? And let’s talk about what to do for inflammation because I think that regardless of what the illness that somebody might have, or the condition, I think a lot of people in the world today have inflammation.
PAMELA SEEFELD: By far. And the best way to look for inflammation is if you’re going to the doctor, have them do a CRP in the blood stream and check to see if that is related to inflammatory processes that are going on in your body.
A lot of times, you have two different scenarios. You have the camp where the people are actually sore. They have arthritis and they’re sore. They feel sore every day. So that inflammation, they are aware of.
The more dangerous inflammation perhaps is silent inflammation, inflammation you are not aware of, you don’t feel, but because it’s an ongoing and it’s a chronic process, what it’s doing eventually is it’s taking the endothelium, which is the inside of the blood vessels and it is allowing plaque and other things, sticky substances, to affect – especially cholesterol. That’s why cholesterol has always gotten such a bad name. But really, it’s not all about cholesterol. Half of the people with heart attacks, their cholesterol is in the normal range.
So cholesterol is not the demon here. It’s untreated inflammation. If you don’t have the inflammation present, the cholesterol can be high, but it won’t really affect the endothelium or the inside lining.
DEBRA: Mm-hmmm… So then, what can we do? Since this is related to the heart, what can we do to treat inflammation, easy things we can do every day?
PAMELA SEEFELD: Oh, some easy things, believe it or not, is avoiding certain foods that contain a lot of arachidonic acid. It doesn’t mean this is for everybody, but this is pretty true in the general consensus.
Arachidonic acid is an inflammatory component that’s in foods, egg yolks, red meat and peanuts. They tend to have the most arachidonic acid than any foods. Now, I am not saying you have to cut those out forever, but those particular foods definitely raise inflammation in a lot of individuals.
DEBRA: That’s good to know, yeah.
PAMELA SEEFELD: Yes. So excluding those is extremely important.
I would tell you that there are data that show that dairy is very inflammatory to a lot of people as well. I’m not saying you go on crazy elimination diets, but try two or three days without any dairy. If you have actual physical inflammation that you feel, see if it goes down.
I’ve seen this in some of my clients quite extensively that people have dairy allergies. And dairy allergies will show up as low grade arthritis. That’s the first symptom people normally have. People will feel like they’re just a little bit sore and achy. They just think that maybe they’re getting a little bit older, maybe they over worked out.
Just doing a food elimination of just the dairy for several days (and like I said, the red meat, the egg yolks and the peanuts, eliminating those foods for just a few days) and seeing if you’re feeling better, that makes a huge difference as far as your diagnostics.
DEBRA: Go ahead.
PAMELA SEEFELD: I would also say that I’m a big fan of something called Traumeel. They call it T-Relief now.
It’s got arnica and it’s got a bunch of other different plants that are anti-inflammatory. It’s very inexpensive.
When you use this, it not only lowers inflammation in the body, but it actually repairs little tears in the tendons and in the tissue where you actually maybe have been injured, maybe you did too much yard work, maybe you did too much at the gym, lifted things that are too heavy. That has a really high anti-inflammatory component that’s very, very effective.
And don’t forget fish oil. I mean, I can just talk for an hour about fish oils, omega-3 fish oils.
DEBRA: And you have.
PAMELA SEEFELD: Yes.
DEBRA: Actually, I should just remind everybody that you can listen to all of the past shows including all of the shows that Pamela has done including her show on fish oils by going to ToxicFreeTalkRadio.com. They are all there.
Pamela, the other day, I looked and we’ve done more than 20 shows.
PAMELA SEEFELD: Oh, my gosh! That’s wonderful.
DEBRA: Yeah. So there’s a lot of information there. If you just go to ToxicFreeTalkRadio.com, there is a link in the menu that says, “Listen to the archived shows.” And if you pulled down there, there’s a submenu and Pamela’s name is right there. You can just click on that and it will take you to all of Pamela’s shows.
PAMELA SEEFELD: I really appreciate that. So, the omega-3 fatty acid, the newest data that came out shows that consumption of omega-3 fatty acids reduced cardiovascular disease. And we knew this, especially the risks. But what it does is it provides a reduction in arterial stiffness.
So the actual endothelium of the arteries, it changes their physical constituent properties. And what happens is when the stiffness is reduced, it allows for the flexibility of the blood vessel and the general health of the endothelium is greatly enhanced. This improves the vascular function.
This actually works on a molecular, cellular and physiological pathway. It affects all three different functions in the cell itself, which is pretty interesting. We know that omega-3 has not just anti-inflammatory properties, but they turn on 300 different genes in the body.
So, when we talk about the arterial wall, they actually can see. This is brand new data that the beneficial effects impacts arterial wall remodeling. So the arterial wall and the endothelium of these vessels, blood vessels around your heart and in your whole body, they actually physically look different after a person has been taking omega-3s.
They incorporate into the cells of the vasculature and they actually find arterial wall remodeling. It looks different.
And this is after less than three weeks. So it’s a huge, huge impact. So now we know what is actually happening.
And don’t forget too (I don’t know if your listeners remember some of the omega-3 facts), but it has anti-inflammatory activity and it also has anti-arrhythmic activity. So somebody that has cardiac arrhythmias and they’re not well controlled on their medications, this can also have a great effect.
DEBRA: That’s great. I love it that a lot of these substances have multiple benefits, not just one. We need to go to break, but we’ll be right back.
You’re listening to Toxic Free Talk Radio. My guest today is Pamela Seefeld. She’s a registered pharmacist who also practices pharmacognosy, which is a wonderful field of using plants and other natural substances. Pharmacognosy means drugs with information, substances with information.
We’ll be back after the break and talk more with Pamela about how you can protect your heart from hidden dangers.
DEBRA: You’re listening to Toxic Free Talk Radio. I’m Debra Lynn Dadd. My guest today is Pamela Seefeld, registered pharmacist and also a practitioner of pharmacognosy, which is the use of plants as medicine.
Pamela, before we go on, why don’t you tell us about what you do and give your phone number?
PAMELA SEEFELD: Okay, great. My background is clinical pharmacy, but I also studied pharmacognosy at the University of Florida. Pharmacognosy, of course, we were describing, is plant medicine. It’s a little bit more than herbalism, talking about the medicinal properties of different plants and how they work in the body.
I have my pharmacy here in Clearwater, Florida. I would be very honored to help your family. It’s a free consultation.
If you have any questions about medications you’re on and if you want to get off of them or if you’re also interested in using some homeopathic medicine to treat chronic illness, maybe you have MS or heart disease or some of the other things we were talking about, diabetes and you don’t want to be on your medication, I can gladly help you with that.
You can call me here at my pharmacy. It’s (727) 442-4955. That’s (727) 442-4955. We use homeopathic medication instead of drugs.
DEBRA: Okay, good. Now before we go on, I just have one more question about inflammation. Inflammation has to do with blood vessels and what’s happening with them. If one has inflammation in their body, then wouldn’t that affect the functioning of every organ?
PAMELA SEEFELD: Correct! And also too (it’s really important), we’ve done shows on weight and weight loss and trying to lose weight. It’s really hard for men and women. When you start reaching 40s and 50s and 60s and so forth, it’s really hard to lose weight and you gain weight very easily with not much caloric of change.
We know for a fact that if there is inflammation in the body that’s untreated and it’s circulating, so to speak – we have something called circulating cytokines, which are these interleukin, these chemical messengers that the fat actually produces.
That’s one of the reasons you see more cardiovascular disease in people that are overweight. The reason why is because their own fat is producing interleukins that are even more pro-inflammatory and cause more weight gain and cause more inflammation to the blood vessels.
So the subcutaneous fat, especially the visceral fat in the abdomen is highly problematic because it’s actually producing more of these inflammatory messengers that are making the person’s health decline even faster.
And this is the problem. Your body is actually working against itself.
DEBRA: I understand what you just said. I think what I’m trying to put two and two together here around is that we have inflammation and then we have organs of the detox system like the liver and kidneys and lungs. And if one has inflammation in the body, then that would inhibit the functioning of their detox organs.
PAMELA SEEFELD: Correct! Because the inflammation, what it’s doing, is it’s actually working against itself.
You’re having the body producing more inflammatory components.
And the blood vessel inflammation (we’re talking about the heart today), this inflammation and the change in the endothelium, when there are interleukins and components that are pro-inflammatory, the changes in the endothelium are robust and very negative and they are affecting the blood vessels, especially going even into the kidney.
This is actually interesting. In one of the studies I was pulling, Deb, there’s a system in the kidney. And as pharmacists, we know about this quite well. There’s something called the renin-angiotensin system.
The rennin-angiotensin system is associated with the kidney and it controls blood pressure. This is why when people have pre-dialysis or dialysis or they have kidney disease, why they have to be on what’s called converting enzyme inhibitors or ACE inhibitors. They have to be on these medicines that affect the renin-angiotensin system because when people’s kidneys are not functioning properly, this system goes awry and what happens is blood pressure goes up.
So that’s why you see a lot of people on dialysis or people that have kidney problems on blood pressure medicine.
That’s why the blood pressure goes high. It’s not because they’re heavy, it’s not because they did anything. It’s because the kidney is messed up.
The studies show that inflammation and oxidative stress with the renin-angiotensin system not working correctly because the person maybe having some pre-kidney issues or actually are on dialysis is leading to excess atherosclerosis.
So we know when someone has metabolic syndrome or kidney problems at the same time and the renin-angiotensin system is not working correctly, they end up being put on a bunch of blood pressure medications, they feel very sick and inflammation and oxidative stress actually increase.
DEBRA: Okay, good. I understood that.
PAMELA SEEFELD: That’s what’s really happening. So when you see people that are diabetic and maybe they have kidney problems too, it’s really, really terrible that the body is producing all these extra inflammatory components that are damaging the kidney. And when they damage the kidney, we’re starting the blood pressure problem.
That’s why you see typically when a person has kidney issues or metabolic syndrome or pre-diabetes, that’s why they need blood pressure medicine, that’s why they need cholesterol medicine. All these medicines come for a reason and this is all because of the inflammation. If the inflammation wasn’t present, none of this would be here.
DEBRA: So, it looks like it is really important to treat inflammation regardless of what your condition may be in your body. And especially with our subject of detox, it can interfere with your body’s detoxifying as it should, which would lead to a greater build-up of toxic chemicals in your body.
PAMELA SEEFELD: Oh, most definitely. All those things, it’s a logical progression. But it’s important that your listeners know that instead of feeling overwhelmed, they should realize that these things are working against you.
The best thing to do is maybe use some homeopathic stuff in the beginning to try and clear it out or make sure that you are on top of things because unfortunately, your practitioner, your physician is just going to keep adding medicine. If you’re trying to avoid that, you need to make sure you’re addressing this in the top form and not just putting it to the side.
And like I said, inflammation can be silent. So, you need to make sure that you’re checking these numbers.
DEBRA: And what were the numbers again? You gave some numbers earlier.
PAMELA SEEFELD: I would tell you, the most important thing they can check is your CRP. But if you actually have inflammation and you’re sore, that’s a dead giveaway that you’ve got a real problem there especially if it’s an ongoing basis or even if, say, someone’s diagnosed with arthritis or rheumatoid arthritis or osteoarthritis.
It’s not the arthritis that’s going to get them, it’s the cardiovascular disease. So, it’s important to realize that these things go hand in hand with a lot of other diseases. It’s not like one thing is not connected to the other.
Our bodies are contiguous. All the blood vessels are connected to the other blood vessels. So it’s not just one area of your body.
Anything that’s not being treated (maybe just some simple homeopathy to prevent some of the problems associated with it) makes a huge difference in the long haul as far as the person’s general health. That’s very important to realize.
DEBRA: Good. When we come back from break, we’ll talk more about the heart. We’ll stop talking about inflammation and go back to the heart. I just am really interested in inflammation and how it contributes to detox.
So, when we come back, we’ll talk with Pamela more about some other hidden dangers affecting your heart. You’re listening to Toxic Free Talk Radio. I’m Debra Lynn Dadd. We’ll be right back.
DEBRA: You’re listening to Toxic Free Talk Radio. I’m Debra Lynn Dadd. My guest today is Pamela Seefeld. We’re talking about hidden dangers that can affect your heart. Pamela, are there some toxic chemicals that can affect your heart as well?
PAMELA SEEFELD: Yeah. Actually, there are endocrine and neuroendocrine disruptors and these chemicals and electricity too. I’ll pull the studies for that here. It’s interesting. Let me pull these studies here.
Studies show as far as these chemicals and things we’re exposed to environmentally (and we’ll talk a little bit more about different vitamins again after that), what they’ve found is (and like I said, these are recent studies) that neuroendocrine disrupting chemicals act like estrogens and androgens and glucocorticoids in the body, but they’re not really the actual chemical.
These are found in industry, agriculture and food preservatives. And these all have problems. They affect the endocrine system. They have activity on the same receptors as estrogens and testosterone and so forth. These things look like the hormone and they’re mimicking it. They can cause sex hormone dependent cancers, but especially obesity and cardiovascular disease (that’s what are implicated as far as if the people have high exposure to these particular things).
This is really important because what’s happening is this is stuff that you don’t realize you’re being exposed to. And the fact that they’re docking in on the receptors and doing the same thing as the chemicals, but actually in a more dangerous way (because your body is not expecting these to be present on the receptor and then all of a sudden, they show up), it has cardiovascular implications that are pretty severe.
And definitely, this is why we think that we’re seeing a rise in cardiovascular disease here in the United States. It’s not because people are eating more poorly. They always want to blame it on diet. It is not so much diet, but the neuroendocrine disruptors are really creating problems.
What they’re finding in these people is they’re having huge amounts. They’re exposed to maybe plasticizers and so forth or they work in industry. What they are finding is that they have much higher rates of cardiovascular diseases as a result of it. So this is statistically significant and I thought this is interesting.
Now, you would know about this quite more than myself because I’m more of a chemistry person. But it looks like they looked at electrical staff, people that are working around electricity, they found that electromagnetic fields had a higher incidence of cardiovascular diseases, these people that were actually exposed to EMF fields of 50 hertz. It actually has almost the same effect as being exposed to chemicals.
DEBRA: Wow! That’s something that I need to look up and find out what would be a 50 hertz exposure. That’s something to keep in mind.
PAMELA SEEFELD: It’s affecting the nervous system. That’s what they think.
DEBRA: Yeah. And of course, this is what they’re studying, just to find out what are the effects. This is all new.
People weren’t talking about these kinds of things even 10 years ago. So I’m really happy to see all this coming out.
And then, what about carbon monoxide?
PAMELA SEEFELD: Carbon monoxide, most definitely. They found that exposure to carbon monoxide – most people here in the United States actually were pretty fortunate. We don’t have indoor kitchens where we’re cooking food with twigs and stuff. But you have to realize that a third of the world does not have a toilet, does not have electricity and they cook in an enclosed area in their house with wood that they gather.
We have carbon monoxide exposure in varying degrees maybe depending on what we have burning in the house and also the fact that we have carbon monoxide sensors in a lot of homes. I actually have them in my house. We know it can be a dangerous thing, but it’s not as troubling as perhaps other areas that are much poorer than we are, but it’s still very important. And the study did show people that especially are working in kitchens and so forth, if it’s enclosed and there’s no proper ventilation.
And this could even be in the house. People sometimes go crazy where they’re cooking a lot of food on the stove, maybe they’re not having the windows open. Maybe it’s a small home, maybe it’s a small kitchen. What they found is that carbon monoxide, when they started to be elevated to some degree, what they did is they did the cardiac enzymes of these people and they found that they were elevated. They’re not elevated enough to cause a heart attack, but there were mild elevations, which signaled that the heart was being damaged.
This makes sense because we know carbon monoxide. And of course, we know with suicide attempts and so forth, you can kill yourself with this.
PAMELA SEEFELD: But you’re exposed to small, small amounts of it when you are cooking in your house. And it depends on the ventilation and it depends on the size of the kitchen. Sometimes people have really small kitchens and there’s no proper ventilation.
You may see this more in big cities. Here in Florida, we have pretty much bigger homes. But when you think about New York and Boston and these tiny little apartments, you’ve got to be really careful with what you’re doing.
DEBRA: Especially if you are cooking with gas.
PAMELA SEEFELD: Yes.
DEBRA: A gas burner will give off what’s called combustion byproducts and carbon monoxide is only one of them.
So if you are cooking with gas, it’s really important to make sure that the burners are adjusted properly, so that they are burning cleanly and also that you have overhead hood ventilation and you make sure that you turn it on when you’re doing the cooking. Those two things will greatly reduce the amount of carbon monoxide. But you should also have a carbon monoxide detector and this is the way to more safely use gas.
But I know in some apartments, I have seen where there’s a gas stove and then there’s a closet with a gas water heater and all these flames are just open flames and all that carbon monoxide and other combustion byproducts are just going throughout your home.
PAMELA SEEFELD: You’re absolutely right. People don’t even look at that. You need to emphasize that. That is very common.
DEBRA: It’s very common. And I know that also, these things can go wrong. My grandmother had gas heat. This was a long time ago. She had gas heat and something went wrong with it and it started putting carbon monoxide in her house and she almost died.
PAMELA SEEFELD: Oh, my gosh.
PAMELA SEEFELD: Yeah. So this can happen even today. And I know for myself, I have gas in two of my homes.
We have the water heaters in the [inaudible 00:33:01] places and the open flames are still there in the previous ones.
The new ones are up to code. But unless you actually go there and change it out, you don’t see that.
DEBRA: That’s right.
PAMELA SEEFELD: I mean, I had no idea.
DEBRA: That’s right. I have a gas water heater, but it’s one of those instant water heaters.
PAMELA SEEFELD: Oh yeah, those are excellent!
DEBRA: So there’s no tank. It’s a tankless water heater. It’s mounted on the side of my house and so there are gas exhaust fumes, but they go outside.
PAMELA SEEFELD: That’s very smart.
DEBRA: They’re not in my house at all. They’re not in the garage, not anywhere near the inside of my house or an open window.
PAMELA SEEFELD: The interesting part about this little study here (and this was actually from April this year), the very, very small amounts of exposure to this, we are making small changes in the cardiac enzymes in the blood stream. They have very, very fine equipment to detect this.
Let me explain this. When you have enzymes and you can measure them in the blood stream, it means that the cells died. In the medical sense, it’s called cardiomyopathy when the heart gets weakened because some of the cells die.
If you have enough cells dying, that’s a heart attack. Once your cells die, they release these cardiac enzymes and that’s how they diagnose heart attacks. A heart attack is basically a certain area of the heart basically dying, the muscle, especially because it’s trying to over-compensate because that area is not pumping correctly anymore.
So this is important to realize in the ventilation. These are really important things to look at in your immediate environment and say, “Is this something that’s affecting me?”
DEBRA: Yeah. There are also other health effects of combustion byproducts and some of them cause cancer. Formaldehyde is one of them. So this gas thing is a really important thing and probably we should talk a lot more about that.
Anyway, you are listening to Toxic Free Talk Radio. I’m Debra Lynn Dadd. My guest today is Pamela Seefeld. When we come back, we’ll talk more about what you can do to protect your heart from these hidden dangers. We’ll be right back.
DEBRA: You’re listening to Toxic Free Talk Radio. I’m Debra Lynn Dadd. My guest today is Pamela Seefeld. She’s a registered pharmacist, but she also is a practitioner of pharmacognosy, which is the use of plants for medicinal purposes.
Pamela, why don’t you give your phone number again?
PAMELA SEEFELD: Yes, you can call me here at my homeopathic pharmacy. I would be very glad to help you and your family, also your pets if you have any questions about them as well. The number here at Botanical Resource is (727) 442-4955. That’s (727) 442-4955.
DEBRA: Great! And that’s a free consultation. You can just call her up and Pamela herself will talk to you. She’s very well regarded here. I’ve taken some of her recommendations and they all turned out perfectly.
So Pamela, we are in our last segment here. Why don’t you tell us some of the remedies for these things? We’ve talked about so many problems.
PAMELA SEEFELD: Yeah, yeah, yeah. This is good. No, this is really good. Most people know that D is very important. It looks like low vitamin D levels, we’re definitely putting people at risk for cardiovascular disease and also risk for developing metabolic syndromes.
So it’s important to realize that in the past, the doctors wanted your vitamin D level maybe 30 or something like that, 20 to 30, something in that range. Well now, the alternative physicians (and actually a lot of medical establishments) are really embracing that they want you closer to 100. If your D levels are low, you definitely need to be taking more D and to try and get that up. It’s very important.
This is brand new study that just came out actually in August of this year. It found that when people had poor vitamin D status, they were more at risk for developing metabolic syndrome and more at risk for having heart disease.
D is not just for the bones (and we’ve known that for a while). D is a hormone and it acts in the brain. It works especially for depression. It protects against depression and lot of other things, but it looks like it has really strong implications in preventing against cardiovascular disease.
So knowing where your concentration is really important. If you’re going to do any blood work at all, you really need to have your D level made. And then you also need to have your CRP done. That’s very important, those two things, the inflammation marker and the D level. They tell a lot about what’s going on in your body.
DEBRA: I know that I’ve had difficulties sometimes getting a medical doctor to do some blood tests that I want because they say, “We can only request what the insurance company will allow us to request for your diagnosis.” But there are places online. It’s very easy to get all these tests and you can just go to one of those online places and get a vitamin D test.
There’s a whole organization that all they do is vitamin D test. So you don’t have to be dependent on a medical doctor to get a blood test and find out what’s going on in your body.
PAMELA SEEFELD: That’s a very good point because I’m sure some people that don’t have a regular doctor feel pretty helpless when they listen to these things. They don’t want to go to the doctor and they don’t want to have a blood test with a regular doctor. The fact that they have other alternatives and they are not forced to have an office visit, that’s very relieving for a lot of people.
DEBRA: Yes. And if you think this is going to cost a lot of money, just go look and see what it costs because I went to those websites to see, it costs much less than I thought it was going to.
PAMELA SEEFELD: Most definitely.
DEBRA: So it is an option for you. You don’t need to go to a doctor to get a blood test. Okay, go on.
PAMELA SEEFELD: Okay. So another really interesting thing (and I don’t know if people really thought about this), but it looks like women, just being a woman puts you more at risk for vascular problems, blood vessel problems, inflammation and cardiovascular disease, all of these. And we see that the prevalence is really related to women.
And what’s happening is a lot of times, it’s being linked to arterial stiffness. We were talking about the artery stiffness and lipid disorders (which is the elevated blood lipids) and in correlation with this, any kind of sleep apnea that’s untreated. So the sleep seems to have a big effect on this.
And we were talking previously about the fish oil. There was a new study that showed in July this year that fish oil plus vitamin E lowered LDL cholesterol and it lowered oxidative stress and it also helped for prevention of cardiovascular disease. So get some low dose of vitamin E, the fish oil.
This is really important that we’re talking to the implications for women because it seems like the woman gender has more chance of this being a problem than men. That’s important to realize, especially peri and post-menopausal more so because that’s when the hormones are changing. That’s when the adipose tissue in the abdomen tends to start really being active with the inflammatory components.
When you think about women, they go through menopause. And then all of a sudden, they have all those fats in the middle, little rolls in the middle.
PAMELA SEEFELD: That’s a new onset for them. Maybe they were thin all their lives and all of a sudden, they have fat in the middle. And it’s not because their diet changed. A lot of it is decrease of estrogen, but also the fact that if that happens, those cells, remember, start making more inflammatory components and actually make you gain more weight.
I think that’s a lot of what’s going on in menopause. It’s not just estrogen decrease. There are increased inflammatory markers in a lot of middle aged women that are causing a lot of these problems.
DEBRA: Now that you brought that up, I just want to mention one thing about that. Weight has been an issue for me my whole entire life. I don’t think that I’ve ever been in what one would call “normal weight.” I was born overweight. So it’s always been a struggle. I’ve always had this weight around the middle no matter what I did.
But now, I’m older. I’ve said several times on the show that I had my 60th birthday this year and I’m doing different things. And two things that I’m doing that are very different are that I’m eating a tremendous amount of more fiber than I ever have in my life and I really actually calculated how much fiber I was eating and found some high fiber foods. I’m eating those high fiber foods with every meal. I really, really [inaudible 00:45:24].
PAMELA SEEFELD: Good for you.
DEBRA: Yeah. And the other thing that I’m doing is I’m walking in a pool at a gym three or five days a week. I’m only walking about 40 minutes, but I am really walking and I’m doing things to have more resistance like keeping my fingers together in my hands so that they’re more like paddles. And my fat around the middle is reducing.
PAMELA SEEFELD: Good for you! Well, most definitely, all those things will work.
DEBRA: Yes. And so I think one of the things that’s really been impressing upon me this week is that there really are things, actions that produce effects, that when we take some actions, they do something for better or worse. [Inaudible 00:46:15]
So if we want to do something in a particular direction, if we know what those actions are and do them, we’ll move in that direction. It’s just like if you walk down the street and get to the next block, you just put one foot in front of the other and you’re going to get there. It’s just very predictable.
PAMELA SEEFELD: You’re absolutely right. The small changes do help.
DEBRA: Yeah. If you walk backwards, you’re not going to get to where you want to go.
So just being aware (I know we’ve talked about a lot of things today that might sound scary), but just be aware of the things that are the negative things and saying, “What can I do about those?” and knowing what are the positive things (like taking supplements or some homeopathic remedies or things like that) and actually doing those things will move you forward, that’s where you have control over what your health is going to be.
PAMELA SEEFELD: Most definitely. And these are some simple things. We’re talking about vitamin D, we’re talking about E, we were talking about looking at the carbon monoxide release in your house and the amount that’s there.
Also too, I found some studies here (we’ve kind of talked about this in the past), folic acidstatus is very, very important. So, folic acid really has always been implicated in preventing against cardiovascular disease. And the big things that it’s doing, it’s playing a role on preventing any kind of damage in the blood vessels themselves and in the heart.
But also what’s interesting (we’ve known this for a long time) is that folic acid and B vitamins are associated with lowering homocysteine. And homocysteine is a marker in the bloodstream. That’s another blood test that you can also order, the homocysteine level.
Homocysteine is really a marker of inflammation more so though for cardiovascular outcomes. It’s not necessarily an inflammatory marker per se, but when we see homocysteine elevated, the physician, in turn, will be concerned about what’s going on specifically with the body.
And homocysteine, especially if somebody has cardiovascular disease in their family, if it is elevated even mildly, that’s normally a red flag that they are going to be at risk for heart attack.
Homocysteine comes down very, very nicely and reproducibly with folic acid, maybe some pyridoxine and a little bit of B12. I use a formula that I love a lot. It’s really good. It’s called Cardio B. That’s got five milligrams of folic acid, it’s got 100 of pyridoxine, 1000 of B12. It’s great for energy. It’s great for mental health because folic acid binds to serotonin in the brain. It has really reproducible effects of lowering homocysteine really, really thoroughly in the body.
That’s an easy, inexpensive way to get homocysteine down and in turn, lower your risk.
DEBRA: Good! These are all really good suggestions. We’ve only got about a minute left. So are there any final words on this?
PAMELA SEEFELD: Most definitely! The last of the studies that I found was in July 22nd, 2015 of this year, melatonin in the endoplasmic reticulum. What are the effects? Melatonin, our levels of melatonin, melatonin is an antioxidant. It’s anti-inflammatory. It has anti-tumor effects. It’s not just for sleep. So it’s really important.
And melatonin is a very safe supplement to take if you’re having any sleep disturbances. Really, they looked at sleep disturbances and instability in sleeping and night time instabilities. They’re very much associated with cardiovascular outcomes in a poor way.
PAMELA SEEFELD: So melatonin, we see the people, if their melatonin levels are coming at the right time and there are high peaks in the blood stream (and it can be faint)…
DEBRA: And I have to interrupt you because we just ran out of time.
PAMELA SEEFELD: Oh, yes. Sorry. Thank you. Have a great day. Thank you.
DEBRA: Thank you. You’ve been listening to Toxic Free Talk Radio. I’m Debra Lynn Dadd. My guest was Pamela Seefeld. And you can find out more about our guests, past, present and future at ToxicFreeTalkRadio.com. Be well!