I've stabilized my heart disease!

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TheBrain
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I've stabilized my heart disease!

Postby TheBrain » Tue Jul 02, 2019 11:28 am

I've had two low-radiation Electron Beam Tomography (EBT) coronary calcium scans, the first on August 10, 2016, the second on June 29, 2019, at the same clinic in Boulder, Colorado (Front Range Preventative Imaging). (I was supposed to wait only a year for my second scan, but I couldn't find an EBT scanner in my area.)

I reported my first results at Dr. Gundry on calcium heart scans - Page 2 - ApoE4.Info. My first score was 365.63. A score of zero means no heart disease. A score >0 means heart disease. A score over 400 means extensive coronary calcium. I was given supplement recommendations that I've been following (except I couldn't tolerate niacin despite persevering for quite a while; I'm evidently hypersensitive to it).

The first scan provides a baseline. If that score is >0, subsequent scans indicate what the heart disease is doing. Is the coronary calcium going up, down, or staying the same? "Staying the same" means an annualized calcium volume score change of <15%. A progression of <15% per year means soft plaque is being stabilized.

See the thread EBT Calcium Scan for more information about this method for tracking heart disease (and a link to Raggi's paper about it). This method is all about controlling inflammation.

My recent score was 502. That means I have an annualized 11% calcium volume score change, which means I have stabilized my heart disease! Yay!

My husband had his first scan, and his score was 1008. He's very motivated to follow the clinic's recommendations.

Fortunately, I was able to arrange a consultation with Lindsay Woods (she doesn’t typically do them anymore). She isn't a doctor, but she passed along what the clinic director (Dr. Blanchet) says. She said that it will be easier for my husband to stabilize his score than to cure him of an allergy. She also said that for those whose coronary calcium is stable upon repeat testing, they can pretend their score is zero.

Using this method, this clinic has had no sudden deaths from heart attacks in patients over the past 14 years. Some patients have scores in the thousands (one patient has a score around 14,000!), but their heart disease is stable.

Lindsay believes I will see improvement as I continue addressing my mold toxicity. She recommends my husband and I both get retested in a year at a clinic in Atlanta, Georgia, which uses the same scanner they do and is a day's drive from where we live. We plan to follow through.
ApoE 4/4 - When I was in 7th grade, my fellow students in history class called me "The Brain" because I had such a memory for detail. I excelled at memorization and aced tests. This childhood memory helps me cope!

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ru442
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Re: I've stabilized my heart disease!

Postby ru442 » Tue Jul 02, 2019 11:55 am

Brain do you mind sharing your supplement regimen? I had a high score ~3 years (1400ish) and while I've been taking my recommended Bredesen regimen I would like to add anything I may be missing.

Thanks!
RU
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Re: I've stabilized my heart disease!

Postby donbob » Tue Jul 02, 2019 5:22 pm

Congratulations and well done. Brain, you give us motivation to stay the course.
DonBob
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TheBrain
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Re: I've stabilized my heart disease!

Postby TheBrain » Tue Jul 02, 2019 5:34 pm

ru442 wrote:Brain do you mind sharing your supplement regimen? I had a high score ~3 years (1400ish) and while I've been taking my recommended Bredesen regimen I would like to add anything I may be missing.


Sure, RU. Let me give you the latest recommendations (which my husband will be following) because there have been some changes. I took notes as the three of us spoke, but my husband and I are waiting for our reports to be mailed to us, so I don't know certain things, such as the dose for K2. I can add missing information when I have it. I'll note what's new and what doesn't apply to me.

Basic supplements for my husband:
1. Fish oil – It needs to be the right kind and in the right amount: 4000 mg per day of EPA and DHA. Look at the label and the serving size. How much EPA and DHA are in one pill? The balance between EPA and DHA doesn’t matter (this is new since my first scan; EPA used to be for the heart and DHA for the brain; it was recommended I go “heavy” on the EPA for my heart). Don’t take a supplement with omega-6. The materials Lindsay sends us will include three recommended brands. I don't know if they are the same that were recommended to me three years ago, but I suspect so. Here those are: Carlson's Brand Fish Oil Liquid, Natural Factors Ultra Strength, and NutriGold Triple Strength Omega 3.

(I've been taking one capsule of Nutrigold, but it's hard to find. I'll be looking into the other two brands with my next purchase. I've also been taking two capsules of Nordic Naturals' DHA Xtra. As part of my SIBO treatment, I'm also taking 1 tsp of Genestra's Cod Liver Oil Forte. With all that, I'm still not quite up to 4000 mg per day, but I think I'm close enough.)

2. Vitamin D3, 5000 IUs, in the oil form. Any brand is fine. (I'm taking Designs for Health's Hi-Po Emulsi-D3. I take two drops in the summer and three drops in the winter.)

3. Vitamin K2 (This is new, but I was already taking it for osteoporosis based on my FM PA's recommendation. I'm taking Vitacost's Ultra Vitamin K, one capsule per day. I don't yet know the recommended dose from the clinic.)

4. Baby aspirin at night. (This was recommended to me three years ago, but given my gut issues, I didn't want to take it. At the time, she said that was fine, but based on my next scan, I might want to reconsider. Fortunately, I don't need to reconsider! However, I do take Integrative Therapeutics' Theracumin. I wonder if that's a suitable anti-inflammatory.

5. Kyolic’s aged garlic extract. Take 2 pills in the morning and 2 pills at night. (This is new. I'm going to try it, but I learned when re-introducing high sulfur foods after treatment for hydrogen sulfide SIBO that I'm sensitive to garlic.)

6. Niacin (B3). The bad news: it’s the flushing form, but it will go away (in most people) if one perseveres. Start with 1/2 a pill at night for 2 weeks. Hopefully, you can sleep through any flushing that occurs. (We don’t yet have the dose that my husband should aim for. Mine was 1000 mg, but I couldn't tolerate it. I suspect that dose is the same for him.)
ApoE 4/4 - When I was in 7th grade, my fellow students in history class called me "The Brain" because I had such a memory for detail. I excelled at memorization and aced tests. This childhood memory helps me cope!

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TheBrain
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Re: I've stabilized my heart disease!

Postby TheBrain » Tue Jul 02, 2019 6:16 pm

donbob wrote:Congratulations and well done. Brain, you give us motivation to stay the course.


Thanks, donbob! I must say I'm feeling celebratory. And I'm happy that my story provides a motivational boost.
ApoE 4/4 - When I was in 7th grade, my fellow students in history class called me "The Brain" because I had such a memory for detail. I excelled at memorization and aced tests. This childhood memory helps me cope!

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Re: I've stabilized my heart disease!

Postby TheresaB » Wed Jul 03, 2019 5:29 am

Have you listened to this podcast? It's Ivor Cummins (from the The Fat Emperor website) and huge CAC proponent interviewing Patrick Theut on Reversing Calcification. It was interesting. https://thefatemperor.com/want-to-rever ... cast-ep21/ If no time to listen, there's also transcript to download.
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TheBrain
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Re: I've stabilized my heart disease!

Postby TheBrain » Wed Jul 03, 2019 5:53 am

Thanks, Theresa! I hadn’t come across this podcast. I’ll definitely listen. I very much want to reverse this coronary calcium.
ApoE 4/4 - When I was in 7th grade, my fellow students in history class called me "The Brain" because I had such a memory for detail. I excelled at memorization and aced tests. This childhood memory helps me cope!

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SusanJ
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Re: I've stabilized my heart disease!

Postby SusanJ » Wed Jul 03, 2019 11:01 am

TheBrain wrote:I must say I'm feeling celebratory.


All your hard work is paying off for sure! Hooray and a happy dance for you!!! :D

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Julie G
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Re: I've stabilized my heart disease!

Postby Julie G » Wed Jul 03, 2019 11:26 am

I’m thrilled with your results, my friend! Congrats and keep up the great work. You’re an inspiration for many of us. -xo

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Re: I've stabilized my heart disease!

Postby PeterM » Wed Jul 03, 2019 12:16 pm

TheresaB wrote:Have you listened to this podcast? It's Ivor Cummins (from the The Fat Emperor website) and huge CAC proponent interviewing Patrick Theut on Reversing Calcification. It was interesting. https://thefatemperor.com/want-to-rever ... cast-ep21/ If no time to listen, there's also transcript to download.


I just did a quick read of the Cummins transcript and felt a little conflicted by Thuet’s lower-fat recommendations for E4 carriers. Now 69, I go back to the ultra low-fat Nathan Pritikin days. Because of a bad family history I ate Pritikin style for years. Then at age 57 I received a zero calcium score on my heart scan. Hurrah, it worked! But like George my blood sugar readings began creeping up and so I followed the science to the land of VLC. My numbers since have been good but never great. (Average: A1c 5.1, TC 220, HDL 62, LDL 150, TG 85.)

Thuet’s reasoning (for E4) seems relatively sound but how do we who struggle with glycemic control accommodate LOWER fat? As is, I eat like many here do: Mountains of greens and non-starchy veggies, plenty of quality monounsaturates, modest amounts of nuts, fish and pastured eggs. But in the back of my mind I wonder sometimes: Maybe from a purely cardiovascular standpoint that old Pritikin business IS a better diet (for one like me anyway) even if might be accompanied by an A1c of, say, 5.6 or 5.7. Also I wonder, do people lucky enough to have essentially pristine cerebral vasculature EVER get late onset Alzheimer’s. It would be interesting to look at PET scans of life-long ultra-low fat populations beyond age 70–particularly E4s.


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