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Posts by Dr. Sopler

Your Blood Glucose Level after You Eat can Affect Your Risk for Cardiovascular Disease.

Posted by on Bloodsugar, Cardiovascular Disease, Diabetes, Eating, General Health, Glucose, Health, Heart disease | 0 comments

Your blood glucose level after you eat can affect your risk for cardiovascular disease. Several studies show a correlation between blood glucose levels and what happens to your arteries. The most common ways to evaluate the blood glucose metabolism is to measure fasting blood glucose and Hemoglobin A1c (HbA1c). Hemoglobin A1c is usually used to monitor long-term glucose control, 2-3 months.

Image result for blood glucoseMore and more research is, however, documenting the importance of also knowing what the blood glucose level is after a meal, and that is not checked routinely.

In the following study, the participants were divided into 4 groups based on coronary angiography (Sasso FC,, 2004). One group had no significant stenosis (calcification), the other groups had documented disease in 1 and up to 3 vessels. Several tests were performed to evaluate the glucose metabolism, including the glucose and insulin levels after eating.

For patients with a so-called normal glucose tolerance, it was interesting that the most important test correlating with cardiovascular risk was the glucose level after eating, and the next was Hemoglobin A1c.

In patients with coronary artery disease the researchers showed that even with normal Hemoglobin A1c levels, the participants with an abnormal glucose tolerance test (glucose after a meal) had greater progression of coronary artery lesions (Wang H,, 2014).

It was not even a difference in risk between patients with an impaired glucose tolerance and patients who had type 2 diabetes. This shows that you don’t have to have progressed to having diabetes to have an increased risk for cardiovascular disease. Researchers have found that there is a linear relationship between the risk of cardiovascular death and the 2-hour glucose tolerance test (Leiter LA,, 2005).

Image result for cardiovascular disease and glucose level

The 2 -hour glucose tolerance test measures the blood glucose level 2 hours after a test drink has been ingested.

These researchers found increased mortality at an oral 2-hour glucose tolerance test of approximately 90 mg/dl which is well below the level of what type 2 diabetes patients have.

Research is showing us that what we used to think of as normal and good test results are not good enough. That’s probably why we see a lot of people dying from a cardiovascular disease with laboratory values in the normal range.

Leiter LA, Ceriello A, Davidson JA, Hanefeld M, Monnier L, Owens DR, Tajima N, Tuomilehto J ; International Prandial Glucose Regulation Study Group. Clin Ther. 2005;27 Suppl B:S42-56.

Sasso FC, Carbonara O, Nasti R, Campana B, Marfella R, Torella M, Nappi G, Torella R, Cozzolino D, Glucose metabolism and coronary heart disease in patients with normal glucose tolerance. JAMA. 2004 Apr 21;291(15):1857-63.

Wang H, Tang Z, Li X, Hu B, Feng B. Angiographic evaluation of the effects of glucose metabolic status on progression of coronary artery lesions in patients with coronary artery disease. J Diabetes. 2014 Nov;6(6):541-6.


Learn to Eat Program

Use neurotransmitters to your advantage to help change your eating habits so you achieve your goals.

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Decrease Inflammation after a Meal by Including These 2 Ingredients

Posted by on Eating, General Health, Health, Inflammation | 0 comments

Inflammation and oxidative stress are usually connected, and both can affect your blood vessels in a negative way. Both are known to cause damage to the endothelium, the inner lining of the blood vessels.

Depending on what kind of food the meal includes, both inflammation and oxidative stress can increase. To evaluate if adding processed tomato products would make a difference, the participants of this study consumed high fat meals known to induce oxidative stress on 2 separate occasions (Burton-Freeman B,, 2012).

Image result for beans and tomato pictureOne time a processed tomato product was added, and the other time a non-tomato product was used.

Several tests were performed before and after, and it was found that the tomato product significantly
reduced the high fat meal induced LDL oxidation and the rise in IL-6, an inflammatory marker. 

Beans is another food that has shown to modify cardiovascular risk.

Image result for black bean pasta tomato

When meals containing either black beans, fiber matched meals or antioxidant capacity matched meals were compared this was the result (Reverri EJ,, 2015).

Insulin was lower after the black bean meal and a trend for decreasing oxidized LDL was found for both the the beans and the antioxidant matched meal.

Oxidized LDL is the most harmful form of LDL cholesterol.

If you like pasta, you can make the meal healthier by adding beans to a sauce which includes
processed tomatoes.

By taking a well absorbed form of curcumine you can further decrease inflammation (Sahebkar A, 2014).



Burton-Freeman B, Talbot J, Park E, Krishnankutty S, Edirisinghe I. Protective activity of processed tomato products on postprandial oxidation and inflammation: a clinical trial in healthy weight men and women. Mol Nutr Food Res. 2012 Apr;56(4):622-31.

Reverri EJ, Randolph JM, Steinberg FM, Kappagoda CT, Edirisinghe I, Burton-Freeman BM. Black Beans, Fiber, and Antioxidant Capacity Pilot Study: Examination of Whole Foods vs. Functional Components on Postprandial Metabolic, Oxidative Stress, and Inflammation in Adults with Metabolic Syndrome. Nutrients. 2015 Jul 27;7(8):6139-54.

Sahebkar A1. Are curcuminoids effective C-reactive protein-lowering agents in clinical practice? Evidence from a meta-analysis. Phytother Res. 2014 May;28(5):633-42.

Image result for reduce inflammation photo


Better Curcumin

Curcumin is a good antioxidant, but it is especially effective in helping to reduce inflammation. For these reasons, curcumin provides many health benefits.

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This was found to be the most important risk factor for atherosclerosis.

Posted by on Cardiovascular Disease, Eating, Eating, General Health, Health | 0 comments

If you want to function well and stay healthy, you need a vascular system that can provide good blood supply to all tissue in your body, especially your brain and heart.

The reason is that the blood provides nutrients and oxygen to the whole body. Without that, all tissue will degenerate.

You can imagine what that would mean to your brain and heart.

As we get older the more likely it is that the blood vessels will start to collect deposits and get narrower, that’s called atherosclerosis.

There are several blood tests used to determine the risk for cardiovascular disease.


What you really want to know is the health of your arteries.

The following research is very interesting. It included 4184 participants without what’s considered to be conventional cardiovascular risk factors (Fernandez-Friera L,, 2017). The status of their vascular system was evaluated by ultrasound detected carotid, iliofemoral and abdominal aortic plaques and coronary artery calcification. The researchers also included a lot of different blood tests as well as lifestyle evaluation.


Plaque or coronary artery calcification was present in 49.7% of the participants.

The real value of this study is the identification of the most relevant risk factor which was found to be LDL cholesterol.

The results indicate that atherosclerosis in both men and women develops above an LDL cholesterol threshold of approximately 50 to 60 mg/dl. This is much lower than what was thought necessary for a healthy cardiovascular system.

This means that if you want to have arteries free of deposits, you need to implement a diet and lifestyle that has shown to do that.

This is not impossible and does not have to be that difficult.


What you eat is the most important factor.

When people eating a high protein, low carbohydrate diet for one year were compared with a group eating a plant-based diet also for a year, this was the results.

All the participants were evaluated at the beginning and at the end of the study using myocardial
perfusion imaging, echocardiography and several blood tests (Fleming RM, 2000).

The group eating the plant-based diet improved their cardiovascular function and had less plaque in their arteries a year later when measured.

The group eating a high protein, low carbohydrate diet had more plaque than when they started a year ago, and risk factors for cardiovascular disease like fibrinogen a clotting factor, Lp(a) and CRP an inflammatory marker were all worse.



Fernández-Friera L1, Fuster V2, López-Melgar B3, Oliva B4, García-Ruiz JM5, Mendiguren J6, Bueno H7, Pocock S8, Ibáñez B9, Fernández-Ortiz A10, Sanz J11. Normal LDL-Cholesterol Levels Are Associated With Subclinical Atherosclerosis in the Absence of Risk Factors. J Am Coll Cardiol. 2017 Dec 19;70(24):2979- 2991. doi: 10.1016/j.jacc.2017.10.024.

Fleming RM1. The effect of high-protein diets on coronary blood flow. Angiology. 2000 Oct;51(10):817-26.



 Learn to Eat Program

Use neurotransmitters to your advantage to help change your eating habits so you achieve your goals.

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If you don’t get enough of this mineral it could increase your risk for cardiovascular disease.

Posted by on Cardiovascular Disease, General Health, Health | 0 comments

A lot of people may think that they need to completely change their life style to reduce their risk for cardiovascular disease, and they don’t want to do that.

If you have an unhealthy lifestyle, I would absolutely recommend that you make changes, but sometimes you can actually reduce your risk for serious disease very easily.

The researchers in the following study show us an easy way to reduce the risk of death from coronary heart disease (Kieboom BC,, 2016).


9820 participants, both men and women, were followed for an average of 8.7 years. The results showed that low serum magnesium was associated with an increased risk of coronary heart disease and sudden cardiac death. It also accelerated atherosclerosis (increased thickness of the inner lining of the carotid artery wall) and affected the heart rate.

Getting deposits in the arteries are not good, but this did not explain the increased risk of dying, so there is even more to the beneficial effects of magnesium than this research can explain.

Magnesium’s ability to stop already established vascular calcification has been documented in a laboratory study and was associated with magnesium transport through the cell membrane (Montes de Oca A,, 2014).

There are several studies showing that magnesium can reduce artery calcification. This one showed decreased arterial calcification as the magnesium intake increased when measured with Computed Tomography (Hruby A,, 2014).

Magnesium is best absorbed in the form of an amino acid chelate and is not causing gastrointestinal irritation like magnesium oxide is known to do




Hruby A, O’Donnell CJ, Jacques PF, Meigs JB, Hoffmann U, McKeown NM, Magnesium intake is inversely associated with coronary artery calcification: the Framingham Heart Study. JACC Cardiovasc Imaging. 2014 Jan;7(1):59-69.

Kieboom BC, Niemeijer MN, Leening MJ, van den Berg ME, Franco OH, Deckers JW, Hofman A, Zietse R, Stricker BH, Hoorn EJ. Serum Magnesium and the Risk of Death From Coronary Heart Disease and Sudden Cardiac Death. J Am Heart Assoc. 2016 Jan 22;5(1).

Montes de Oca A, Guerrero F, Martinez-Moreno JM, Madueño JA, Herencia C, Peralta A, Almaden Y, Lopez I, Aguilera-Tejero E, Gundlach K, Büchel J, Peter ME, Passlick-Deetjen J, Rodriguez M, Muñoz-Castañeda JR. Magnesium inhibits Wnt/β-catenin activity and reverses the osteogenic transformation of vascular smooth muscle cells. PLoS One. 2014 Feb 25;9(2):e89525.


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An easy way to effectively support bone, joints, connective tissue and neuromuscular function. 

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Is a low carbohydrate, high protein, high fat diet the best way to eat?

Posted by on General Health | 0 comments

A low carbohydrate, high protein and high fat diet has been promoted by many as the solution to a variety of conditions.


What is the research telling us?

When data from 272,216 people were examined, low carbohydrate diets were associated with a significantly higher risk for all-cause mortality (Noto H,, 2013).

Another study followed 85168 women and 44548 men for 26 and 20 years (Fung TT, et al. 2010).

At the follow up, a low carbohydrate diet with emphasis either on animal sources of fat and protein, or a low carbohydrate diet with an emphasis on vegetable sources of fat and protein were compared.


The researchers found that the animal sourced, low carbohydrate, high fat and high protein diet was associated with higher all-cause mortality, higher cardiovascular mortality and higher cancer mortality when compared with the diet emphasizing low carbohydrates with fat and protein from vegetable sources.



What happened when survivors from myocardial infarctions followed a low carbohydrate diet with higher intake of animal sources of fat and protein?


The researchers found that it was associated with higher all-cause mortality (Li S,, 2014).


Apparently eating a high fat and high protein diet is not healthy, especially if the sources of fat and protein are from animal sources.




Fung TT, van Dam RM, Hankinson SE, Stampfer M, Willett WC, Hu FB. Low-carbohydrate diets and all-cause and cause-specific mortality: two cohort studies. Ann Intern Med. 2010 Sep 7;153(5):289-98.


Li S, Flint A, Pai JK, Forman JP, Hu FB, Willett WC, Rexrode KM, Mukamal KJ, Rimm EB. Low carbohydrate diet from plant or animal sources and mortality among myocardial infarction survivors. J Am Heart Assoc. 2014 Sep 22;3(5).


Noto H, Goto A, Tsujimoto T, Noda M.  Low-carbohydrate diets and all-cause mortality: a systematic review and meta-analysis of observational studies. PLoS One. 2013;8(1):e55030.




 Learn to Eat Program

Use neurotransmitters to your advantage to help change your eating habits so you achieve your goals.

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