Is Blood Sludge a PCOS Ticking Time Bomb?
Some years ago, my aunt dropped dead from a massive heart attack while walking across a parking lot. She was a big woman, not grossly obese but always considerably overweight. I don't know what her diet was like but she was always losing and gaining weight, ending up around 200 lbs. or more. But she was active and spent a lot of time outdoors. She was not a smoker.
She had no history of heart disease but was suddenly dead at age 70. I think that was a bit premature, don't you? She still had a lot of living to do.
She did not have PCOS but I wouldn't be surprised if she had insulin resistance, which is a primary cause of health problems related to polycystic ovary syndrome.
So what might have gone wrong, and how does it relate to you?
Well, it appears that women with PCOS have an elevated risk of cardiovascular disease. In previous newsletters I reported that women with PCOS are more likely than other women to have:
- less flexibility in their arteries ("hardening of the arteries");
- pumping chamber of the heart is enlarged (your heart is working harder); and
- non-dipping blood pressure (blood pressure does not drop enough while asleep).
I also reported that by the time you reach menopause, you have triple the risk of dying from heart disease or a heart attack, compared to other women.
However, when you were a baby, you did not have these problems. Therefore, something appears to be going wrong.
What could it be? Maybe high cholesterol is causing the problem? Most of us believe that high cholesterol causes heart disease. I personally have never seen any convincing proof of this widespread belief. Nevertheless, you could take a statin drug to lower your cholesterol. But be aware that statins deplete co-enzyme Q10, which is required for your cells to produce energy.
Or maybe your blood pressure is a bit high. In this case, there are blood pressure medications available. Unfortunately, they have significant side effects. So a more natural option is to convert to a salt-restricted diet, right? But the national Institute of Medicine has just reported that there is no benefit from severely restricting salt intake. In fact, by doing so, they said that some people may increase their risk of heart attack, not decrease it.
Well, OK then, let's take a baby aspirin every day. It's supposed to thin your blood. The reason for a "baby" aspirin is that an adult dose of aspirin taken daily can cause bleeding in your gut as well as other problems. But is a low-dose baby aspirin effective? I don't know.
It's interesting to note that 100 years ago, statins and blood pressure medications didn't exist. Aspirin was not used nearly as much as it is today. No one was on a salt-restricted diet. Yet heart attacks were quite rare. Cardiovascular disease and diabetes were not common.
Somehow, it seems that pharmaceutical therapies don't get to the heart of the problem. (pardon the pun!)
So let me bring to your attention something you probably haven't heard of before.
I call it "blood sludge". This is blood that is too viscous and doesn't flow efficiently. The results are not good. Watch this video to grasp how blood viscosity affects your health.
Did you watch the video? Great! So now you understand how blood sludge can lead to cardiovascular disease. It could have been blood sludge that caused my aunt's heart attack.
In this article, I'll discuss the causes of blood sludge, how it is connected to PCOS, and what you can do to correct it.
See Related PCOS and Cardiovascular Articles
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