Arizona Advanced Medicine Clinic

Hypertension - High Blood Pressure

Chronically elevated high blood pressure, hypertension, forces the heart to work far beyond its capacity. Along with injuring blood vessels, hypertension can damage the brain, eyes, and kidneys. It is a risk factor risk for strokes, heart attacks, heart failure, and arterial aneurysm. Even moderate elevation of arterial blood pressure leads to shortened life expectancy.

Blood pressure is the force of blood pushing against artery walls. Just as too much air pressure can damage a tire, high blood pressure can threaten healthy arteries and lead to life-threatening conditions.

Normal blood pressure rises steadily from about 90/60 at birth to about 120/80 in a healthy adult. The first number, the systolic pressure, is the pressure in the arteries when the heart beats and fills them with blood. The second number, the diastolic pressure, is the pressure in the arteries when the heart rests between beats.

It is natural for blood pressure readings to rise and fall with physical activity and stress. But it is not natural for it to be chronically high. Yet that is a problem for 1 of about every 3 adults. Adults who measure 140/90 or more, fall into the category of hypertensive. The prevalence of high blood pressure in children is increasing. High blood pressure tends to run in families, is more likely to affect men, and black women aged 65 or older have the highest incidence of high blood pressure.

Medical books say that 90 percent of the cause of hypertension is idiopathic, meaning they don't know what causes it. But research points the finger to several culprits:

Sugar - When you eat too many refined carbohydrates and sugar, your body will produce too much insulin. As your insulin levels rise, your blood pressure increases. Research published as long ago as 1998 reported that nearly two-thirds of the test subjects who were insulin resistant also had high blood pressure.[1]

Too much insulin and you can’t store magnesium so you lose it through urination. Intra-cellular magnesium relaxes muscles. Without it, blood vessels constrict. This causes an increase in blood pressure.

Renin is a protein, an enzyme, released into the bloodstream by the kidneys in response to certain conditions – high blood potassium, low blood sodium, decreased blood volume. It is the first step in what is called the renin-angiotensin-aldosterone cycle. This cycle includes the conversion of angiotensinogen to angiotensin I, which in turn is converted to angiotensin II, in the lung. Angiotensin II is a powerful blood vessel constrictor, and its action stimulates the release of aldosterone, a hormone that helps control the body’s salt and water balance.

Vitamin D – It has long been known that persons living near the equator have less of a problem with hypertension than persons living in other areas. Blood pressure readings tend to be higher in winter than summer when we are getting more sunlight. Normalizing vitamin D levels can have a powerful effect on normalizing blood pressure. Vitamin D slows down the activity of the gene that controls the output of a powerful substance called renin.[2] When you do not have enough vitamin D on board, more renin gets produced. This in turn leads to more conversion of angiotensin 1 into angiotensin 2 which causes constriction of blood vessels leading to hypertension. It also causes thickening of both heart muscle walls and blood vessel walls. The output of adrenaline rises and aldosterone production by the adrenal gland is increased. Aldosterone causes the kidneys to retain salt in the body which also contributes to high blood pressure. With enough vitamin D on board, the body decreases the output of renin which slows this undesirable cascade.

Vitamin C, other antioxidant deficiency – Vitamin C is an antioxidant, meaning it helps neutralize cell-damaging free radicals. Research has shown that antioxidants can help to reduce high blood pressure, possibly by protecting your body’s supply of nitric oxide, a molecule that relaxes blood vessels.

A 2008 study linked high blood levels of vitamin C with lower blood pressure. It reported on the outcome of monitoring almost 250 women over a 10-year period. The more vitamin C they had in their blood stream, the lower their systolic and diastolic blood pressure readings.[3] Previous research had already linked high plasma levels of vitamin C with lower blood pressure among middle-age and older adults.[4]

Salt – Sodium chloride, or table salt, increases average levels of blood pressure. For average Americans, an estimated 77 percent of their salt comes from eating prepared and processed foods that contain salt.[5] So even if you never pick up the salt shaker, the food itself is likely already high in sodium. According to Center for Science in the Public Interest, one Banquet Macaroni & Cheese dinner contains 1,500 mg of sodium; Oscar Mayer's Lunchables range from 670 mg to 1630 mg of sodium. Some Swanson Hungry Man XXL dinners contain 3,180 to 5,410 mg of sodium.[6] The U.S. government recommends that young adults consume less than 2,300 mg of sodium per day. People with hypertension, African Americans, and middle-aged and elderly people-almost half the population-are advised to consume no more than 1,500 mg per day.[7]

When you eat more salt than your kidneys can handle, sodium starts to accumulate in your blood. Because sodium attracts and holds water, your blood volume increases. Increased blood volume, in turn, makes your heart work harder to move more blood through your blood vessels, increasing pressure in your arteries.

Most mainstream literature fails to distinguish however between refined sodium chloride and natural salt. Refined table salt is processed at high temperatures, removing almost all of the 84 beneficial trace minerals found in sea water. Anti-caking compounds such as alumino-silicate of sodium or yellow prussiate of soda are added, and sometimes corn sugar (dextrose) to keep it free-flowing. So there may be sugar, aluminum, and genetically modified corn in your table salt. Refining salt creates an unnatural form, an irritant to the body that can cause high blood pressure. Inorganic sodium chloride can keep you from an ideal fluid balance and can overburden your elimination systems. About 10% of people are susceptible to salt-induced hypertension.

Unrefined salt on the other hand, has all its minerals. Salt as Nature made it has equal importance with water. It helps promote a healthy balance by maintaining fluids and replenishing your supply of electrolytes when you sweat. Unrefined salt helps shuttle nutrients into cells. It maintains the acid/alkaline balance as it shuttles excess acidity out. Unrefined salt facilitates absorption of food particles through the intestinal tract. It also helps regulate blood pressure and works on the lining of blood vessels to keep the pressure balance normal. The adrenal glands run on sodium - refined salt is one reason we see so much adrenal exhaustion.[8]

The importance of dietary salt has been acknowledged for centuries - our word "salary" comes from the Roman word for salt, for example, because soldiers were often paid in salt. We are all salty on the inside - our blood, sweat, tears, and even our urine is somewhat salty. Replenishing salt is important; that is why clinical settings use intravenous saline solution, not just plain water.

The Cytomegalovirus Virus – CMV is a common viral infection; some 60 to 99 percent of adults worldwide have it. The virus is present in many body fluids, including urine, blood, saliva, semen, cervical secretions, and breast milk. CMV is a member of the herpes virus family, and most adults will have contracted the virus by age 40, though many will never exhibit symptoms. Once it has entered the body, CMV is usually there to stay, remaining latent until the immune system is compromised, when it then reemerges. It has been thought of as an innocuous little bug - until just recently. CMV has been found to be a cause of high blood pressure, according to groundbreaking research released in May, 2009.[9]

The research was done at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center (BIDMC). “Viruses have the ability to turn on human genes and, in this case, the CMV virus is enhancing expression of renin, an enzyme directly involved in causing high blood pressure,” says Clyde Crumpacker, MD, an investigator in the Division of Infectious Diseases at BIDMC and Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School. In their final experiments, researchers demonstrated that the protein angiotensin 11 was also increased in response to infection with CMV. “Increased expression of both renin and angiotensin 11 are important factors in hypertension in humans,” says Crumpacker. “What our study seems to indicate is that a persistent viral infection in the vessels’ endothelial cells is leading to increased expression of inflammatory cytokines, renin and angiotensin 11, which are leading to increased blood pressure.”

Heavy metal burden (especially lead) - lead and other heavy metals are highly inflammatory, and are well known to be associated with unexplained or "idiopathic" hypertension.[10] When we get rid of the heavy metals, we get rid of much of the inflammation, and the blood pressure drops.

SOLUTIONS

This new research that a virus causes hypertension is yet one more indication that many chronic illnesses come from a system which is simply overloaded with toxins and in a state of chronic low level inflammation. Heavy metal overload can do the same thing, as can chronic stress. Chronic infections are the cause of much of the conditions that are becoming epidemic today. Whether the manifestation of the pathogens is diagnosed as Lyme or Candida or aren't even diagnosed, we see increasingly that better health is had when we lower the body burden of pathogens. Chronic infections are the new frontier.

Standard antibiotics often do not eradicate the various infectious agents, and their side effects can create yet other problems, such as encouraging a Candida overgrowth. Complementary and alternative medicine often provides a better toolbox. At the Arizona Center for Advanced medicine, we knock down infections with natural therapies ranging from intravenous vitamin C and ultraviolet blood treatments, to colloidal silver and supplements like artemisinin. We sometimes use standard antibiotics unconventionally, in pulsed doses, to interfere with bacterial ability to produce a protein wall - biofilm - which they can hide behind. When the biofilm is gone, the bacteria are exposed to the body's own immune defenses more effectively.

One of the cornerstones of natural therapy for hypertension is magnesium because it relaxes the musculature in the walls of the arteries, permitting the artery to widen and the blood within the artery then exerts less pressure against the wall of the artery. CoQ10, an essential nutrient used in the treatment of heart disease, also helps manage high blood pressure. Not all magnesium supplements are well absorbed.

Pathogens, bacteria which can cause disease, take hold when the inner terrain is weak so we must strengthen our constitutions. This is where diet and lifestyle come in. Our FirstLine Therapy program helps patients transition from sugar and refined carbs - convenience foods - to nutrient dense foods that lessen cravings and give your body what it really needs to maintain a strong immune system. To reduce high blood pressure, we will also look at exercise, smoking, and stress.

Drugs that treat hypertension will not change the underlying cause of high blood pressure. Also, statistics show that over half of people taking multiple medications for high blood pressure are still not able to manage their condition, so for many these drugs simply don't work as promised. In fact, some medications, especially NSAIDs (Motrin and Ibuprofen) and steroids can cause hypertension and kidney failure. Not much point in simply putting a Band-aid over what amounts to an early warning signal that bigger troubles are on the way, such as diabetes, deterioration of the kidneys and heart disease.


[1] AS Krolewski, M Canessa, et al; Predisposition to hypertension and susceptibility to renal disease in insulin-dependent diabetes mellitus, New England Journal of Medicine, January 21, 1988, Volume 318:140-145[2]Li YC et al 1,25 dihydroxy D3 is a negative endocrine regulator of the renin angiotensin system, J Clin Invest 2002:1,229-238[3] G Block, CD Jensen, et al; Vitamin C in plasma is inversely related to blood pressure and change in blood pressure during the previous year in young Black and White women, Nutrition Journal, 2008 Dec 17;7:35 [4] http://www.reuters.com/article/healthNews/idUSTRE4BT50820081230?feedType=RSS&feedName=healthNews [5] Sodium: Are you getting too much? Mayo Clinic [6] Center for Science in the Public Interest, Salt - the Forgotten Killer, 2005, accessed at http://cspinet.org/new/pdf/salt_report_with_cover.pdf and press release accessed at http://www.cspinet.org/new/200502242.html [7] Dietary Guidelines for Americans, 2005; US Dept of Health and Human Services, accessed at http://www.health.gov/dietaryguidelines/dga2005/document [8] D Brownstein, MD, Salt Your Way to Health, Medical Alternatives Press, © 2006 [9] Jilin Cheng, Qingen Ke, et al; Cytomegalovirus Infection Causes an Increase of Arterial Blood Pressure, Plos Pathogens, May 15, 2009 [10] Ana Navas-Acien, Lead Exposure and Cardiovascular Disease-A Systematic Review, Environ Health Perspect. 2007 March; 115(3): 472-482.
Hypertension - High Blood Pressure

Too much insulin and you can’t store magnesium so you lose it through urination. Intra-cellular magnesium relaxes muscles. Without it, blood vessels constrict. This causes an increase in blood pressure.

Vitamin D – It has long been known that persons living near the equator have less of a problem with hypertension than persons living in other areas. Blood pressure readings tend to be higher in winter than summer when we are getting more sunlight. Normalizing vitamin D levels can have a powerful effect on normalizing blood pressure. Vitamin D slows down the activity of the gene that controls the output of a powerful substance called renin.[2] When you do not have enough vitamin D on board, more renin gets produced. This in turn leads to more conversion of angiotensin 1 into angiotensin 2 which causes constriction of blood vessels leading to hypertension. It also causes thickening of both heart muscle walls and blood vessel walls. The output of adrenaline rises and aldosterone production by the adrenal gland is increased. Aldosterone causes the kidneys to retain salt in the body which also contributes to high blood pressure. With enough vitamin D on board, the body decreases the output of renin which slows this undesirable cascade.

Vitamin C, other antioxidant deficiency – Vitamin C is an antioxidant, meaning it helps neutralize cell-damaging free radicals. Research has shown that antioxidants can help to reduce high blood pressure, possibly by protecting your body’s supply of nitric oxide, a molecule that relaxes blood vessels.

A 2008 study linked high blood levels of vitamin C with lower blood pressure. It reported on the outcome of monitoring almost 250 women over a 10-year period. The more vitamin C they had in their blood stream, the lower their systolic and diastolic blood pressure readings.[3] Previous research had already linked high plasma levels of vitamin C with lower blood pressure among middle-age and older adults.[4]

Salt – Sodium chloride, or table salt, increases average levels of blood pressure. For average Americans, an estimated 77 percent of their salt comes from eating prepared and processed foods that contain salt.[5] So even if you never pick up the salt shaker, the food itself is likely already high in sodium. According to Center for Science in the Public Interest, one Banquet Macaroni & Cheese dinner contains 1,500 mg of sodium; Oscar Mayer's Lunchables range from 670 mg to 1630 mg of sodium. Some Swanson Hungry Man XXL dinners contain 3,180 to 5,410 mg of sodium.[6] The U.S. government recommends that young adults consume less than 2,300 mg of sodium per day. People with hypertension, African Americans, and middle-aged and elderly people-almost half the population-are advised to consume no more than 1,500 mg per day.[7]

When you eat more salt than your kidneys can handle, sodium starts to accumulate in your blood. Because sodium attracts and holds water, your blood volume increases. Increased blood volume, in turn, makes your heart work harder to move more blood through your blood vessels, increasing pressure in your arteries.

Most mainstream literature fails to distinguish however between refined sodium chloride and natural salt. Refined table salt is processed at high temperatures, removing almost all of the 84 beneficial trace minerals found in sea water. Anti-caking compounds such as alumino-silicate of sodium or yellow prussiate of soda are added, and sometimes corn sugar (dextrose) to keep it free-flowing. So there may be sugar, aluminum, and genetically modified corn in your table salt. Refining salt creates an unnatural form, an irritant to the body that can cause high blood pressure. Inorganic sodium chloride can keep you from an ideal fluid balance and can overburden your elimination systems. About 10% of people are susceptible to salt-induced hypertension.

Unrefined salt on the other hand, has all its minerals. Salt as Nature made it has equal importance with water. It helps promote a healthy balance by maintaining fluids and replenishing your supply of electrolytes when you sweat. Unrefined salt helps shuttle nutrients into cells. It maintains the acid/alkaline balance as it shuttles excess acidity out. Unrefined salt facilitates absorption of food particles through the intestinal tract. It also helps regulate blood pressure and works on the lining of blood vessels to keep the pressure balance normal. The adrenal glands run on sodium - refined salt is one reason we see so much adrenal exhaustion.[8]

The importance of dietary salt has been acknowledged for centuries - our word "salary" comes from the Roman word for salt, for example, because soldiers were often paid in salt. We are all salty on the inside - our blood, sweat, tears, and even our urine is somewhat salty. Replenishing salt is important; that is why clinical settings use intravenous saline solution, not just plain water.

The Cytomegalovirus Virus – CMV is a common viral infection; some 60 to 99 percent of adults worldwide have it. The virus is present in many body fluids, including urine, blood, saliva, semen, cervical secretions, and breast milk. CMV is a member of the herpes virus family, and most adults will have contracted the virus by age 40, though many will never exhibit symptoms. Once it has entered the body, CMV is usually there to stay, remaining latent until the immune system is compromised, when it then reemerges. It has been thought of as an innocuous little bug - until just recently. CMV has been found to be a cause of high blood pressure, according to groundbreaking research released in May, 2009.[9]

The research was done at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center (BIDMC). “Viruses have the ability to turn on human genes and, in this case, the CMV virus is enhancing expression of renin, an enzyme directly involved in causing high blood pressure,” says Clyde Crumpacker, MD, an investigator in the Division of Infectious Diseases at BIDMC and Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School. In their final experiments, researchers demonstrated that the protein angiotensin 11 was also increased in response to infection with CMV. “Increased expression of both renin and angiotensin 11 are important factors in hypertension in humans,” says Crumpacker. “What our study seems to indicate is that a persistent viral infection in the vessels’ endothelial cells is leading to increased expression of inflammatory cytokines, renin and angiotensin 11, which are leading to increased blood pressure.”

Heavy metal burden (especially lead) - lead and other heavy metals are highly inflammatory, and are well known to be associated with unexplained or "idiopathic" hypertension.[10] When we get rid of the heavy metals, we get rid of much of the inflammation, and the blood pressure drops.

SOLUTIONS

This new research that a virus causes hypertension is yet one more indication that many chronic illnesses come from a system which is simply overloaded with toxins and in a state of chronic low level inflammation. Heavy metal overload can do the same thing, as can chronic stress. Chronic infections are the cause of much of the conditions that are becoming epidemic today. Whether the manifestation of the pathogens is diagnosed as Lyme or Candida or aren't even diagnosed, we see increasingly that better health is had when we lower the body burden of pathogens. Chronic infections are the new frontier.

Standard antibiotics often do not eradicate the various infectious agents, and their side effects can create yet other problems, such as encouraging a Candida overgrowth. Complementary and alternative medicine often provides a better toolbox. At the Arizona Center for Advanced medicine, we knock down infections with natural therapies ranging from intravenous vitamin C and ultraviolet blood treatments, to colloidal silver and supplements like artemisinin. We sometimes use standard antibiotics unconventionally, in pulsed doses, to interfere with bacterial ability to produce a protein wall - biofilm - which they can hide behind. When the biofilm is gone, the bacteria are exposed to the body's own immune defenses more effectively.

One of the cornerstones of natural therapy for hypertension is magnesium because it relaxes the musculature in the walls of the arteries, permitting the artery to widen and the blood within the artery then exerts less pressure against the wall of the artery. CoQ10, an essential nutrient used in the treatment of heart disease, also helps manage high blood pressure. Not all magnesium supplements are well absorbed.

Pathogens, bacteria which can cause disease, take hold when the inner terrain is weak so we must strengthen our constitutions. This is where diet and lifestyle come in. Our FirstLine Therapy program helps patients transition from sugar and refined carbs - convenience foods - to nutrient dense foods that lessen cravings and give your body what it really needs to maintain a strong immune system. To reduce high blood pressure, we will also look at exercise, smoking, and stress.

Drugs that treat hypertension will not change the underlying cause of high blood pressure. Also, statistics show that over half of people taking multiple medications for high blood pressure are still not able to manage their condition, so for many these drugs simply don't work as promised. In fact, some medications, especially NSAIDs (Motrin and Ibuprofen) and steroids can cause hypertension and kidney failure. Not much point in simply putting a Band-aid over what amounts to an early warning signal that bigger troubles are on the way, such as diabetes, deterioration of the kidneys and heart disease.


[1] AS Krolewski, M Canessa, et al; Predisposition to hypertension and susceptibility to renal disease in insulin-dependent diabetes mellitus, New England Journal of Medicine, January 21, 1988, Volume 318:140-145[2]Li YC et al 1,25 dihydroxy D3 is a negative endocrine regulator of the renin angiotensin system, J Clin Invest 2002:1,229-238[3] G Block, CD Jensen, et al; Vitamin C in plasma is inversely related to blood pressure and change in blood pressure during the previous year in young Black and White women, Nutrition Journal, 2008 Dec 17;7:35 [4] http://www.reuters.com/article/healthNews/idUSTRE4BT50820081230?feedType=RSS&feedName=healthNews [5] Sodium: Are you getting too much? Mayo Clinic [6] Center for Science in the Public Interest, Salt - the Forgotten Killer, 2005, accessed at http://cspinet.org/new/pdf/salt_report_with_cover.pdf and press release accessed at http://www.cspinet.org/new/200502242.html [7] Dietary Guidelines for Americans, 2005; US Dept of Health and Human Services, accessed at http://www.health.gov/dietaryguidelines/dga2005/document [8] D Brownstein, MD, Salt Your Way to Health, Medical Alternatives Press, © 2006 [9] Jilin Cheng, Qingen Ke, et al; Cytomegalovirus Infection Causes an Increase of Arterial Blood Pressure, Plos Pathogens, May 15, 2009 [10] Ana Navas-Acien, Lead Exposure and Cardiovascular Disease-A Systematic Review, Environ Health Perspect. 2007 March; 115(3): 472-482.
Hypertension - High Blood Pressure

Salt – Sodium chloride, or table salt, increases average levels of blood pressure. For average Americans, an estimated 77 percent of their salt comes from eating prepared and processed foods that contain salt.[5] So even if you never pick up the salt shaker, the food itself is likely already high in sodium. According to Center for Science in the Public Interest, one Banquet Macaroni & Cheese dinner contains 1,500 mg of sodium; Oscar Mayer's Lunchables range from 670 mg to 1630 mg of sodium. Some Swanson Hungry Man XXL dinners contain 3,180 to 5,410 mg of sodium.[6] The U.S. government recommends that young adults consume less than 2,300 mg of sodium per day. People with hypertension, African Americans, and middle-aged and elderly people-almost half the population-are advised to consume no more than 1,500 mg per day.[7]

When you eat more salt than your kidneys can handle, sodium starts to accumulate in your blood. Because sodium attracts and holds water, your blood volume increases. Increased blood volume, in turn, makes your heart work harder to move more blood through your blood vessels, increasing pressure in your arteries.

Most mainstream literature fails to distinguish however between refined sodium chloride and natural salt. Refined table salt is processed at high temperatures, removing almost all of the 84 beneficial trace minerals found in sea water. Anti-caking compounds such as alumino-silicate of sodium or yellow prussiate of soda are added, and sometimes corn sugar (dextrose) to keep it free-flowing. So there may be sugar, aluminum, and genetically modified corn in your table salt. Refining salt creates an unnatural form, an irritant to the body that can cause high blood pressure. Inorganic sodium chloride can keep you from an ideal fluid balance and can overburden your elimination systems. About 10% of people are susceptible to salt-induced hypertension.

Unrefined salt on the other hand, has all its minerals. Salt as Nature made it has equal importance with water. It helps promote a healthy balance by maintaining fluids and replenishing your supply of electrolytes when you sweat. Unrefined salt helps shuttle nutrients into cells. It maintains the acid/alkaline balance as it shuttles excess acidity out. Unrefined salt facilitates absorption of food particles through the intestinal tract. It also helps regulate blood pressure and works on the lining of blood vessels to keep the pressure balance normal. The adrenal glands run on sodium - refined salt is one reason we see so much adrenal exhaustion.[8]

The importance of dietary salt has been acknowledged for centuries - our word "salary" comes from the Roman word for salt, for example, because soldiers were often paid in salt. We are all salty on the inside - our blood, sweat, tears, and even our urine is somewhat salty. Replenishing salt is important; that is why clinical settings use intravenous saline solution, not just plain water.

The Cytomegalovirus Virus – CMV is a common viral infection; some 60 to 99 percent of adults worldwide have it. The virus is present in many body fluids, including urine, blood, saliva, semen, cervical secretions, and breast milk. CMV is a member of the herpes virus family, and most adults will have contracted the virus by age 40, though many will never exhibit symptoms. Once it has entered the body, CMV is usually there to stay, remaining latent until the immune system is compromised, when it then reemerges. It has been thought of as an innocuous little bug - until just recently. CMV has been found to be a cause of high blood pressure, according to groundbreaking research released in May, 2009.[9]

The research was done at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center (BIDMC). “Viruses have the ability to turn on human genes and, in this case, the CMV virus is enhancing expression of renin, an enzyme directly involved in causing high blood pressure,” says Clyde Crumpacker, MD, an investigator in the Division of Infectious Diseases at BIDMC and Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School. In their final experiments, researchers demonstrated that the protein angiotensin 11 was also increased in response to infection with CMV. “Increased expression of both renin and angiotensin 11 are important factors in hypertension in humans,” says Crumpacker. “What our study seems to indicate is that a persistent viral infection in the vessels’ endothelial cells is leading to increased expression of inflammatory cytokines, renin and angiotensin 11, which are leading to increased blood pressure.”

Heavy metal burden (especially lead) - lead and other heavy metals are highly inflammatory, and are well known to be associated with unexplained or "idiopathic" hypertension.[10] When we get rid of the heavy metals, we get rid of much of the inflammation, and the blood pressure drops.

SOLUTIONS

This new research that a virus causes hypertension is yet one more indication that many chronic illnesses come from a system which is simply overloaded with toxins and in a state of chronic low level inflammation. Heavy metal overload can do the same thing, as can chronic stress. Chronic infections are the cause of much of the conditions that are becoming epidemic today. Whether the manifestation of the pathogens is diagnosed as Lyme or Candida or aren't even diagnosed, we see increasingly that better health is had when we lower the body burden of pathogens. Chronic infections are the new frontier.

Standard antibiotics often do not eradicate the various infectious agents, and their side effects can create yet other problems, such as encouraging a Candida overgrowth. Complementary and alternative medicine often provides a better toolbox. At the Arizona Center for Advanced medicine, we knock down infections with natural therapies ranging from intravenous vitamin C and ultraviolet blood treatments, to colloidal silver and supplements like artemisinin. We sometimes use standard antibiotics unconventionally, in pulsed doses, to interfere with bacterial ability to produce a protein wall - biofilm - which they can hide behind. When the biofilm is gone, the bacteria are exposed to the body's own immune defenses more effectively.

One of the cornerstones of natural therapy for hypertension is magnesium because it relaxes the musculature in the walls of the arteries, permitting the artery to widen and the blood within the artery then exerts less pressure against the wall of the artery. CoQ10, an essential nutrient used in the treatment of heart disease, also helps manage high blood pressure. Not all magnesium supplements are well absorbed.

Pathogens, bacteria which can cause disease, take hold when the inner terrain is weak so we must strengthen our constitutions. This is where diet and lifestyle come in. Our FirstLine Therapy program helps patients transition from sugar and refined carbs - convenience foods - to nutrient dense foods that lessen cravings and give your body what it really needs to maintain a strong immune system. To reduce high blood pressure, we will also look at exercise, smoking, and stress.

Drugs that treat hypertension will not change the underlying cause of high blood pressure. Also, statistics show that over half of people taking multiple medications for high blood pressure are still not able to manage their condition, so for many these drugs simply don't work as promised. In fact, some medications, especially NSAIDs (Motrin and Ibuprofen) and steroids can cause hypertension and kidney failure. Not much point in simply putting a Band-aid over what amounts to an early warning signal that bigger troubles are on the way, such as diabetes, deterioration of the kidneys and heart disease.


[1] AS Krolewski, M Canessa, et al; Predisposition to hypertension and susceptibility to renal disease in insulin-dependent diabetes mellitus, New England Journal of Medicine, January 21, 1988, Volume 318:140-145[2]Li YC et al 1,25 dihydroxy D3 is a negative endocrine regulator of the renin angiotensin system, J Clin Invest 2002:1,229-238[3] G Block, CD Jensen, et al; Vitamin C in plasma is inversely related to blood pressure and change in blood pressure during the previous year in young Black and White women, Nutrition Journal, 2008 Dec 17;7:35 [4] http://www.reuters.com/article/healthNews/idUSTRE4BT50820081230?feedType=RSS&feedName=healthNews [5] Sodium: Are you getting too much? Mayo Clinic [6] Center for Science in the Public Interest, Salt - the Forgotten Killer, 2005, accessed at http://cspinet.org/new/pdf/salt_report_with_cover.pdf and press release accessed at http://www.cspinet.org/new/200502242.html [7] Dietary Guidelines for Americans, 2005; US Dept of Health and Human Services, accessed at http://www.health.gov/dietaryguidelines/dga2005/document [8] D Brownstein, MD, Salt Your Way to Health, Medical Alternatives Press, © 2006 [9] Jilin Cheng, Qingen Ke, et al; Cytomegalovirus Infection Causes an Increase of Arterial Blood Pressure, Plos Pathogens, May 15, 2009 [10] Ana Navas-Acien, Lead Exposure and Cardiovascular Disease-A Systematic Review, Environ Health Perspect. 2007 March; 115(3): 472-482.
Hypertension - High Blood Pressure

When you eat more salt than your kidneys can handle, sodium starts to accumulate in your blood. Because sodium attracts and holds water, your blood volume increases. Increased blood volume, in turn, makes your heart work harder to move more blood through your blood vessels, increasing pressure in your arteries.

Most mainstream literature fails to distinguish however between refined sodium chloride and natural salt. Refined table salt is processed at high temperatures, removing almost all of the 84 beneficial trace minerals found in sea water. Anti-caking compounds such as alumino-silicate of sodium or yellow prussiate of soda are added, and sometimes corn sugar (dextrose) to keep it free-flowing. So there may be sugar, aluminum, and genetically modified corn in your table salt. Refining salt creates an unnatural form, an irritant to the body that can cause high blood pressure. Inorganic sodium chloride can keep you from an ideal fluid balance and can overburden your elimination systems. About 10% of people are susceptible to salt-induced hypertension.

Unrefined salt on the other hand, has all its minerals. Salt as Nature made it has equal importance with water. It helps promote a healthy balance by maintaining fluids and replenishing your supply of electrolytes when you sweat. Unrefined salt helps shuttle nutrients into cells. It maintains the acid/alkaline balance as it shuttles excess acidity out. Unrefined salt facilitates absorption of food particles through the intestinal tract. It also helps regulate blood pressure and works on the lining of blood vessels to keep the pressure balance normal. The adrenal glands run on sodium - refined salt is one reason we see so much adrenal exhaustion.[8]

The importance of dietary salt has been acknowledged for centuries - our word "salary" comes from the Roman word for salt, for example, because soldiers were often paid in salt. We are all salty on the inside - our blood, sweat, tears, and even our urine is somewhat salty. Replenishing salt is important; that is why clinical settings use intravenous saline solution, not just plain water.

The Cytomegalovirus Virus – CMV is a common viral infection; some 60 to 99 percent of adults worldwide have it. The virus is present in many body fluids, including urine, blood, saliva, semen, cervical secretions, and breast milk. CMV is a member of the herpes virus family, and most adults will have contracted the virus by age 40, though many will never exhibit symptoms. Once it has entered the body, CMV is usually there to stay, remaining latent until the immune system is compromised, when it then reemerges. It has been thought of as an innocuous little bug - until just recently. CMV has been found to be a cause of high blood pressure, according to groundbreaking research released in May, 2009.[9]

The research was done at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center (BIDMC). “Viruses have the ability to turn on human genes and, in this case, the CMV virus is enhancing expression of renin, an enzyme directly involved in causing high blood pressure,” says Clyde Crumpacker, MD, an investigator in the Division of Infectious Diseases at BIDMC and Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School. In their final experiments, researchers demonstrated that the protein angiotensin 11 was also increased in response to infection with CMV. “Increased expression of both renin and angiotensin 11 are important factors in hypertension in humans,” says Crumpacker. “What our study seems to indicate is that a persistent viral infection in the vessels’ endothelial cells is leading to increased expression of inflammatory cytokines, renin and angiotensin 11, which are leading to increased blood pressure.”

Heavy metal burden (especially lead) - lead and other heavy metals are highly inflammatory, and are well known to be associated with unexplained or "idiopathic" hypertension.[10] When we get rid of the heavy metals, we get rid of much of the inflammation, and the blood pressure drops.

SOLUTIONS

This new research that a virus causes hypertension is yet one more indication that many chronic illnesses come from a system which is simply overloaded with toxins and in a state of chronic low level inflammation. Heavy metal overload can do the same thing, as can chronic stress. Chronic infections are the cause of much of the conditions that are becoming epidemic today. Whether the manifestation of the pathogens is diagnosed as Lyme or Candida or aren't even diagnosed, we see increasingly that better health is had when we lower the body burden of pathogens. Chronic infections are the new frontier.

Standard antibiotics often do not eradicate the various infectious agents, and their side effects can create yet other problems, such as encouraging a Candida overgrowth. Complementary and alternative medicine often provides a better toolbox. At the Arizona Center for Advanced medicine, we knock down infections with natural therapies ranging from intravenous vitamin C and ultraviolet blood treatments, to colloidal silver and supplements like artemisinin. We sometimes use standard antibiotics unconventionally, in pulsed doses, to interfere with bacterial ability to produce a protein wall - biofilm - which they can hide behind. When the biofilm is gone, the bacteria are exposed to the body's own immune defenses more effectively.

One of the cornerstones of natural therapy for hypertension is magnesium because it relaxes the musculature in the walls of the arteries, permitting the artery to widen and the blood within the artery then exerts less pressure against the wall of the artery. CoQ10, an essential nutrient used in the treatment of heart disease, also helps manage high blood pressure. Not all magnesium supplements are well absorbed.

Pathogens, bacteria which can cause disease, take hold when the inner terrain is weak so we must strengthen our constitutions. This is where diet and lifestyle come in. Our FirstLine Therapy program helps patients transition from sugar and refined carbs - convenience foods - to nutrient dense foods that lessen cravings and give your body what it really needs to maintain a strong immune system. To reduce high blood pressure, we will also look at exercise, smoking, and stress.

Drugs that treat hypertension will not change the underlying cause of high blood pressure. Also, statistics show that over half of people taking multiple medications for high blood pressure are still not able to manage their condition, so for many these drugs simply don't work as promised. In fact, some medications, especially NSAIDs (Motrin and Ibuprofen) and steroids can cause hypertension and kidney failure. Not much point in simply putting a Band-aid over what amounts to an early warning signal that bigger troubles are on the way, such as diabetes, deterioration of the kidneys and heart disease.


[1] AS Krolewski, M Canessa, et al; Predisposition to hypertension and susceptibility to renal disease in insulin-dependent diabetes mellitus, New England Journal of Medicine, January 21, 1988, Volume 318:140-145[2]Li YC et al 1,25 dihydroxy D3 is a negative endocrine regulator of the renin angiotensin system, J Clin Invest 2002:1,229-238[3] G Block, CD Jensen, et al; Vitamin C in plasma is inversely related to blood pressure and change in blood pressure during the previous year in young Black and White women, Nutrition Journal, 2008 Dec 17;7:35 [4] http://www.reuters.com/article/healthNews/idUSTRE4BT50820081230?feedType=RSS&feedName=healthNews [5] Sodium: Are you getting too much? Mayo Clinic [6] Center for Science in the Public Interest, Salt - the Forgotten Killer, 2005, accessed at http://cspinet.org/new/pdf/salt_report_with_cover.pdf and press release accessed at http://www.cspinet.org/new/200502242.html [7] Dietary Guidelines for Americans, 2005; US Dept of Health and Human Services, accessed at http://www.health.gov/dietaryguidelines/dga2005/document [8] D Brownstein, MD, Salt Your Way to Health, Medical Alternatives Press, © 2006 [9] Jilin Cheng, Qingen Ke, et al; Cytomegalovirus Infection Causes an Increase of Arterial Blood Pressure, Plos Pathogens, May 15, 2009 [10] Ana Navas-Acien, Lead Exposure and Cardiovascular Disease-A Systematic Review, Environ Health Perspect. 2007 March; 115(3): 472-482.
Hypertension - High Blood Pressure

The importance of dietary salt has been acknowledged for centuries - our word "salary" comes from the Roman word for salt, for example, because soldiers were often paid in salt. We are all salty on the inside - our blood, sweat, tears, and even our urine is somewhat salty. Replenishing salt is important; that is why clinical settings use intravenous saline solution, not just plain water.

The Cytomegalovirus Virus – CMV is a common viral infection; some 60 to 99 percent of adults worldwide have it. The virus is present in many body fluids, including urine, blood, saliva, semen, cervical secretions, and breast milk. CMV is a member of the herpes virus family, and most adults will have contracted the virus by age 40, though many will never exhibit symptoms. Once it has entered the body, CMV is usually there to stay, remaining latent until the immune system is compromised, when it then reemerges. It has been thought of as an innocuous little bug - until just recently. CMV has been found to be a cause of high blood pressure, according to groundbreaking research released in May, 2009.[9]

The research was done at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center (BIDMC). “Viruses have the ability to turn on human genes and, in this case, the CMV virus is enhancing expression of renin, an enzyme directly involved in causing high blood pressure,” says Clyde Crumpacker, MD, an investigator in the Division of Infectious Diseases at BIDMC and Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School. In their final experiments, researchers demonstrated that the protein angiotensin 11 was also increased in response to infection with CMV. “Increased expression of both renin and angiotensin 11 are important factors in hypertension in humans,” says Crumpacker. “What our study seems to indicate is that a persistent viral infection in the vessels’ endothelial cells is leading to increased expression of inflammatory cytokines, renin and angiotensin 11, which are leading to increased blood pressure.”

Heavy metal burden (especially lead) - lead and other heavy metals are highly inflammatory, and are well known to be associated with unexplained or "idiopathic" hypertension.[10] When we get rid of the heavy metals, we get rid of much of the inflammation, and the blood pressure drops.

SOLUTIONS

This new research that a virus causes hypertension is yet one more indication that many chronic illnesses come from a system which is simply overloaded with toxins and in a state of chronic low level inflammation. Heavy metal overload can do the same thing, as can chronic stress. Chronic infections are the cause of much of the conditions that are becoming epidemic today. Whether the manifestation of the pathogens is diagnosed as Lyme or Candida or aren't even diagnosed, we see increasingly that better health is had when we lower the body burden of pathogens. Chronic infections are the new frontier.

Standard antibiotics often do not eradicate the various infectious agents, and their side effects can create yet other problems, such as encouraging a Candida overgrowth. Complementary and alternative medicine often provides a better toolbox. At the Arizona Center for Advanced medicine, we knock down infections with natural therapies ranging from intravenous vitamin C and ultraviolet blood treatments, to colloidal silver and supplements like artemisinin. We sometimes use standard antibiotics unconventionally, in pulsed doses, to interfere with bacterial ability to produce a protein wall - biofilm - which they can hide behind. When the biofilm is gone, the bacteria are exposed to the body's own immune defenses more effectively.

One of the cornerstones of natural therapy for hypertension is magnesium because it relaxes the musculature in the walls of the arteries, permitting the artery to widen and the blood within the artery then exerts less pressure against the wall of the artery. CoQ10, an essential nutrient used in the treatment of heart disease, also helps manage high blood pressure. Not all magnesium supplements are well absorbed.

Pathogens, bacteria which can cause disease, take hold when the inner terrain is weak so we must strengthen our constitutions. This is where diet and lifestyle come in. Our FirstLine Therapy program helps patients transition from sugar and refined carbs - convenience foods - to nutrient dense foods that lessen cravings and give your body what it really needs to maintain a strong immune system. To reduce high blood pressure, we will also look at exercise, smoking, and stress.

Drugs that treat hypertension will not change the underlying cause of high blood pressure. Also, statistics show that over half of people taking multiple medications for high blood pressure are still not able to manage their condition, so for many these drugs simply don't work as promised. In fact, some medications, especially NSAIDs (Motrin and Ibuprofen) and steroids can cause hypertension and kidney failure. Not much point in simply putting a Band-aid over what amounts to an early warning signal that bigger troubles are on the way, such as diabetes, deterioration of the kidneys and heart disease.


[1] AS Krolewski, M Canessa, et al; Predisposition to hypertension and susceptibility to renal disease in insulin-dependent diabetes mellitus, New England Journal of Medicine, January 21, 1988, Volume 318:140-145[2]Li YC et al 1,25 dihydroxy D3 is a negative endocrine regulator of the renin angiotensin system, J Clin Invest 2002:1,229-238[3] G Block, CD Jensen, et al; Vitamin C in plasma is inversely related to blood pressure and change in blood pressure during the previous year in young Black and White women, Nutrition Journal, 2008 Dec 17;7:35 [4] http://www.reuters.com/article/healthNews/idUSTRE4BT50820081230?feedType=RSS&feedName=healthNews [5] Sodium: Are you getting too much? Mayo Clinic [6] Center for Science in the Public Interest, Salt - the Forgotten Killer, 2005, accessed at http://cspinet.org/new/pdf/salt_report_with_cover.pdf and press release accessed at http://www.cspinet.org/new/200502242.html [7] Dietary Guidelines for Americans, 2005; US Dept of Health and Human Services, accessed at http://www.health.gov/dietaryguidelines/dga2005/document [8] D Brownstein, MD, Salt Your Way to Health, Medical Alternatives Press, © 2006 [9] Jilin Cheng, Qingen Ke, et al; Cytomegalovirus Infection Causes an Increase of Arterial Blood Pressure, Plos Pathogens, May 15, 2009 [10] Ana Navas-Acien, Lead Exposure and Cardiovascular Disease-A Systematic Review, Environ Health Perspect. 2007 March; 115(3): 472-482.
Hypertension - High Blood Pressure

The research was done at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center (BIDMC). “Viruses have the ability to turn on human genes and, in this case, the CMV virus is enhancing expression of renin, an enzyme directly involved in causing high blood pressure,” says Clyde Crumpacker, MD, an investigator in the Division of Infectious Diseases at BIDMC and Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School. In their final experiments, researchers demonstrated that the protein angiotensin 11 was also increased in response to infection with CMV. “Increased expression of both renin and angiotensin 11 are important factors in hypertension in humans,” says Crumpacker. “What our study seems to indicate is that a persistent viral infection in the vessels’ endothelial cells is leading to increased expression of inflammatory cytokines, renin and angiotensin 11, which are leading to increased blood pressure.”

Heavy metal burden (especially lead) - lead and other heavy metals are highly inflammatory, and are well known to be associated with unexplained or "idiopathic" hypertension.[10] When we get rid of the heavy metals, we get rid of much of the inflammation, and the blood pressure drops.

This new research that a virus causes hypertension is yet one more indication that many chronic illnesses come from a system which is simply overloaded with toxins and in a state of chronic low level inflammation. Heavy metal overload can do the same thing, as can chronic stress. Chronic infections are the cause of much of the conditions that are becoming epidemic today. Whether the manifestation of the pathogens is diagnosed as Lyme or Candida or aren't even diagnosed, we see increasingly that better health is had when we lower the body burden of pathogens. Chronic infections are the new frontier.

Standard antibiotics often do not eradicate the various infectious agents, and their side effects can create yet other problems, such as encouraging a Candida overgrowth. Complementary and alternative medicine often provides a better toolbox. At the Arizona Center for Advanced medicine, we knock down infections with natural therapies ranging from intravenous vitamin C and ultraviolet blood treatments, to colloidal silver and supplements like artemisinin. We sometimes use standard antibiotics unconventionally, in pulsed doses, to interfere with bacterial ability to produce a protein wall - biofilm - which they can hide behind. When the biofilm is gone, the bacteria are exposed to the body's own immune defenses more effectively.

One of the cornerstones of natural therapy for hypertension is magnesium because it relaxes the musculature in the walls of the arteries, permitting the artery to widen and the blood within the artery then exerts less pressure against the wall of the artery. CoQ10, an essential nutrient used in the treatment of heart disease, also helps manage high blood pressure. Not all magnesium supplements are well absorbed.

Pathogens, bacteria which can cause disease, take hold when the inner terrain is weak so we must strengthen our constitutions. This is where diet and lifestyle come in. Our FirstLine Therapy program helps patients transition from sugar and refined carbs - convenience foods - to nutrient dense foods that lessen cravings and give your body what it really needs to maintain a strong immune system. To reduce high blood pressure, we will also look at exercise, smoking, and stress.

Drugs that treat hypertension will not change the underlying cause of high blood pressure. Also, statistics show that over half of people taking multiple medications for high blood pressure are still not able to manage their condition, so for many these drugs simply don't work as promised. In fact, some medications, especially NSAIDs (Motrin and Ibuprofen) and steroids can cause hypertension and kidney failure. Not much point in simply putting a Band-aid over what amounts to an early warning signal that bigger troubles are on the way, such as diabetes, deterioration of the kidneys and heart disease.

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