Myth Buster – Only alcohol can help heart disease.

Many news articles and clinical research reports say that alcohol and in particular red wine can be used, in moderation, to lower the risk of heart disease.

While this is true there are many other beverages and foods that contain the vital ingredients for lowering heart disease risk.

The vital ingredient is one of the metabolizing chemicals called flavonoids.

Flavonoids have the ability to act as an anti-inflammatory and improve blood flow. And, when the body is actually trying to get rid of them they pick up cancerous type cells and get rid of them also.

Flavonoids are widely distributed in plants fulfilling many functions including producing yellow or red/blue pigmentation in flowers and protection from attack by microbes and insects.

Clinical research indicates that only small amounts of flavonoids are necessary in the body. Taking large dietary supplements provides no extra benefit and may pose some risks.

Foods and drinks which contain flavonoids are red wine, tea, grape and grape juice, cocoa, onions, kale, broccoli, beans, apples, blackcurrants and chocolate.

Absorption of flavanols is rather fast, with times to reach peak values between 0.5 and 4h. Flavanols are rapidly excreted, with elimination in about one to 6 hours.

Research suggests that 2 to 3 cups of black or oolong tea may help lower your experiences of stress and thus help your heart.

Drinking 2 to three cups of cocoa per day may help lower blood pressure if high blood pressure is a problem for you.

Many people who have never drunk alcohol, or who needed to stop drinking (alcoholics) will be helped by this ‘Myth Bust’. There are other ways – self-help yourself with help from others such as your doctor.

NB: This is general information. Always consult your doctor before trying any of these foods or drinks. Do not stop taking medication without your doctors advice.

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