Today almost every second man and woman in the industrialized world dies from heart attacks and strokes. The underlying disease is the formation of arteriosclerotic plaques that eventually leads to the narrowing of the arteries and to their clogging. The two most frequent forms of cardiovascular diseases are:
Coronary artery disease - The formation of arteriosclerotic plaques in the coronary arteries of the heart can lead to heart attacks;
Cerebrovascular disease - The formation of arteriosclerotic plaques in the arteries that supply blood to the brain eventually can lead to their clogging, resulting in strokes.
The epidemic spread of this disease is due to the fact that up until now the real causes of arteriosclerosis have been insufficiently – or not at all – understood.
Conventional medicine is mainly limited to addressing the symptoms of the disease. Calcium antagonists, beta-blockers, nitrates and other pharmaceutical drugs are prescribed to alleviate typical symptoms of the disease like chest pain (angina pectoris). In advanced cases of the disease, coronary bypass surgery is applied to improve the blood circulation through the narrowed arteries. These conventional treatments, generally, do not address the underlying cause of arteriosclerotic disease at the cellular level.
In recent years, scientific discoveries have been made that cast new light on our understanding of the cellular causes of coronary heart diseases and other forms of cardiovascular disease. Our modern understanding is that the primary cause of cardiovascular disease is a long term dietary deficiency in vitamins and other micronutrients. This results, among others, in an insufficient production of collagen, the reinforcement molecules of the artery walls by specific cells inside the artery wall, namely fibroblasts. As a consequence, numerous little cracks and crevices occur along the artery walls, followed by an entry of lipids, lipoproteins, clotting factors and other biological molecules from the blood, in the attempt to repair the weakening vascular wall. When this repair process overshoots, arteriosclerotic plaques form over time.
Following this modern concept of cardiovascular disease, a multitude of scientific research and other clinical studies have been published that demonstrate the importance of vitamins, minerals, certain plant extracts (phytobiologicals) and other micronutrients in helping to prevent and treat cardiovascular disease.