Last week saw the publication of another study associating heart attacks with very low vitamin D levels this time in men. Dr. Giovannucci analyzed the Health Professions Cohort followed at Harvard University and found that men with vitamin D levels below 15 ng/mL had twice as many heart attacks as men with vitamin D levels above 30 ng/mL. Similar data were published in January from the Framingham Offspring Cohort.
Vitamin D deficiency has also been associated with an increased risk for high blood pressure and heart failure. And, both of these medical conditions lead to an enlarged heart. Enlarged hearts are more susceptible to rhythm disturbances like atrial fibrillation and ventricular tachycardia.
The National Health and Nutrition Examination Surveys from the CDC tell us that Americans only get about half their required potassium intake and only 60 percent of their magnesium intake on a daily basis. These nutrients come primarily from vegetable matter and fruit. Green vegetables have the highest concentration of available magnesium. Americans on average consume less than one serving of green vegetables a day and rarely more than two servings of produce a day.
The Honolulu Heart Study showed a 50-80 percent higher risk for coronary heart disease with lower magnesium intakes. Low levels of potassium and magnesium in the blood increase the risk of rhythm disturbances like atrial fibrillation and ventricular tachycardia particularly following heart bypass or heart attack, thus increasing the risk for sudden death. Low intakes of omega-3 fatty acids particularly DHA and EPA are associated with a higher risk for coronary heart disease and a higher risk for rhythm disturbances in the heart and sudden death.
Tim Russert’s sudden death from coronary heart disease is not a mystery. It was the result of lifestyle factors that too many Americans share. Unfortunately, too many of them will suffer the same fate.
None of this has to happen. Make this news event a wake up call for you to intervene and change the path you’re on. We need to consume at least 6 servings of vegetable matter a day. Two or fewer of these servings should be fruit and two or more of these servings should be green vegetables. We need to increase our consumption of fish and wild free range meats or supplement omega 3 fats. We need to get more exercise and sun exposure. We should check our vitamin D levels along with our cholesterol profiles and supplement vitamin D if needed.
You CAN change the trajectory you are on by embracing the messages in The Vitamin D Cure and convert sudden death into sudden life