Antioxidants and the Heart of the Matter

Your heart is truly a wonderous machine . Even before your birth , the muscles that make up your heart are already at work , circulating oxygen enriched blood to each part in your body and returnin oxygen depleted blood back into the lungs. On average, the heart will beat 37,869,120 times every 365 days , year after year. That’s about two and a half billion heartbeats in a lifespan .

Clearly , your heart is a powerhouse and it’s worth protecting. You realize , no one can live without a beating heart and with an average of 2 deaths every 68 seconds , 40% of all the deaths in the United States are from heart disease, the leading cause of which is Coronary Artery Disease (CAD).

Since it’s the hardest working muscle group in the body, the heart muscles will produce a lot of energy and it’s the high requirement for energy production which renders the heart vulnerable to the threat of free radicals. Hence , the heart is one organ with a high requirement for antioxidants and the most valuable one is Glutathione.

The Heart’s Energy Factory

Your heart’s astounding ability to make energy is based inside each cell in the cellular power plants which are known as Mitochondria. Every cell in your body possesses these little energy producing sites . On average, most cells will have a couple of hundred mitochondria, but the cells that make up the endlessly toiling heart have about 5,000! The power that’s produced in your cells, is created in the form of a substance called ATP or adenosine triphosphate. It’s no surprise , energy production has a price .

The by- products of creating energy are damaged molecules – free radicals and with the high concentration of energy producing mitochondria in the cells of the heart , there is a proportionately high population of free radicals . Without the intervention of antioxidant activity , free radicals can create a chain reaction in the heart cells that will destroy them and their components – including the cellular DNA.

Heart Disease and Coronary Artery Disease

Arteriosclerosis – Coronary Artery Disease (CAD) generally called hardening of the arteries or loss of arterial elasticity is a leading cause of Heart disease. It has been connected to a substance called lipid peroxidase. That’s what you get when the lipids in your heart become free radicals. Lipids, are a group of molecules that include waxes, sterols, fats and the fat soluble vitamins D, E, A & K. As well as elevated levels of Free radicals, patients with CAD have also been found with reduced amounts of antioxidants like Glutathione. Missing enough antioxidants to remove free radicals in the heart, it and your arterial system will eventually suffer from oxidative stress.

Our systems are designed to clean up the free radicals created by normal processes, but too many of us are exposed to extra stressors that aren’t natural . These stresses include environmental toxins (and especially tobacco smoke!), nutritionally inadequate diets, the unhealthy pace and induced stress of everyday living and poor conditioning of the bodies from not enough exercise. We have put our antioxidant levels at a health damaging disadvantage.

The Benefits of Boosting our More Glutathione and Other Antioxidants

As we age , our systems naturally begin to slow down. The mitochondria in our cells inevitably create less energy and we also produce less glutathione – which is necessary for a healthy heart. Boosting glutathione supply can’t make us live forever, but when you think about how hard your heart is working for you , it only makes sense to improve our diets , choose a healthier lifestyle and take concrete steps to boost our natural production of glutathione.

Oral Glutathione supplements are not effective, but you can increase your glutathione with a glutathione precursor like MAX- GXL .