| Biogen SA | 4 supplements to support your heart health

According to statistics1 from the Heart and Stroke Foundation, 225 South Africans die due to heart diseases every day, and cardiovascular disease (CVD) makes up a significant proportion (18%) of total adult deaths in the country attributable to non-communicable diseases.

CVD affects the heart and blood vessels and includes conditions such as coronary heart disease, various vascular diseases, and other conditions, with more than four out of five CVD deaths caused by heart attacks and strokes, according to WHO data2.

Leading risk factors2 for heart disease and stroke include high blood pressure, high low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol, diabetes, smoking and secondhand smoke exposure, obesity, unhealthy diet, and physical inactivity.

While CVD clearly poses a significant health risk, many conditions are preventable with the appropriate lifestyle changes, particularly to our diet and daily activity levels.

Give your heart a workout

Your heart is essentially a powerful muscle that pumps blood around the body. And just like any muscle, we can strengthen it with exercise and regular activity.

When we exercise, we strengthen the powerful walls of our heart (comprised of cardiac muscle called myocardium). Doing so creates a stronger, more efficient pump that pushes greater volumes of blood around our body with every beat. A stronger, more efficient heart also needs to beat fewer times throughout the day to meet our demands (that’s why your resting heart rate is lower when you are fitter).

A study4 led by University of Oxford researchers found that there is no upper threshold to the benefits of exercise in improving your heart health, with any exercise, no matter how vigorous or for how long, effective at helping to reduce CVD risk.

This can be as simple as moving more or walking every day, or through more intense and intentional exercise, especially cardiovascular activities such as running, cycling, skipping or swimming as there are the most efficient at improving heart and lung function.

The heart-healthy diet

What you eat also has a significant impact on your heart. In a related study5, researchers in Israel determined that diets high in protein, zinc and vitamin B3, like the Mediterranean Diet, boost heart health, including “better vascular structure and function”.

In general, heart-healthy eating guidelines recommend eating a diet that contains a variety of colours – at least five portions of different fruits and vegetables to provide a range of nutrients and antioxidants – with healthy unsaturated fats and a limited amount (less than 10% of your daily fat requirements) of saturated fat6.

It is also beneficial for your heart to consume at least two portions of fish per week, including one serving of oily fish, as it is an excellent source of protein and healthy fats, and contains various vitamins and minerals.

Heart health supplements

You can support your heart-healthy diet, exercise and daily activity with various supplements shown to support heart health and function. These include:

In a study7 published in the Journal of the American Heart Association, a meta-analysis that reviewed data from over 10 studies, omega‐3 supplements were how to lower the risk for heart attack and death from coronary heart disease.

Biogen Omega 3 1000mg Fish Oil is a combination of fish oil and vitamin E that provides a source of the omega-3 fatty acids, eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) to help maintain and support cardiovascular health. The added vitamin E contributes to the protection of cells from oxidative stress.

A study8 published in Cardiovascular Pharmacology suggests that CoQ10 may have “significant cardiovascular protective effects” that could help prevent cardiovascular disease.

Biogen Co-Enzyme Q10 150mg provides an increased dose of Co-Q10 found in the mitochondria of all cells, which aids in the production of cellular energy and cardiovascular function. Added vitamin C protects cells from free radical damage and contributes to normal collagen formation for the normal function of blood vessels.

As an essential mineral that is important to the maintenance of good health through its role in energy production and nervous system function, magnesium can benefit your heart in various ways.

A high magnesium intake is associated with lower risk of major cardiovascular risk factors, including metabolic syndrome, diabetes and hypertension, as well as stroke and total CVD9.

Biogen Magnesium Glycinate contains a highly absorbable form of magnesium, as it is bound to the chelating amino acid glycine.

B vitamins have various functions in the body, with their role in supporting nervous system function the most important when it comes to optimal heart function. According to one study10, among those hospitalised for heart failure, 27% had a vitamin B2 (riboflavin) deficiency and 38% had low vitamin B6 (pyridoxine) levels.

Biogen Supreme B Complex contains all the major B-group vitamins along with choline for nervous system support, and inositol to support energy production and normal methylation and homocysteine metabolism for cardiovascular support.