Can Garlic reduce Vascular Plaque?
Plaque is a term used for deposits in the arteries.
Not all plaque is equally dangerous. It depends on the thickness and what it is made of. The most dangerous plaque is unstable and may create a blood clot causing an obstruction of an artery if it breaks loose.
When 1469 patients with low to intermediate cardiovascular risk were evaluated with coronary CT angiography, the researchers found that the risk for major adverse cardiac events increased with a non-calcifying plaque component (Feuchtner G, et.al., 2017)
What is termed low-attenuation plaque is plaque with lower density, below a certain thickness. This is what the researchers found to be one of the most powerful predictors of major adverse cardiac events.
What follows now is the most important information, because the researchers in the next study documented an easy way to stabilize vulnerable plaque and decrease adverse cardiovascular events (Matsumoto S, et.al., 2016).
The researchers evaluated patients with metabolic syndrome using cardiac computed tomography angiography at the beginning of the study. Then they gave them either 2400 mg of aged garlic extract per day, or a placebo for approximately one year before evaluating them again.
They found that the participants taking the aged garlic had significantly reduced low-attenuation plaque, which is the dangerous type.
Sometimes there are easy steps you can take to reduce your cardiovascular risk. The best way to use information like this is not only to take garlic extract, but to add that to a diet documented to reduce risk factors for cardiovascular disease.
Feuchtner G, Kerber J, Burghard P, Dichtl W, Friedrich G, Bonaros N, Plank F. The high-risk criteria low-attenuation plaque <60 HU and the napkin-ring sign are the most powerful predictors of MACE: a long-term follow-up study. Eur Heart J Cardiovasc Imaging. 2017 Jul 1;18(7):772-779.
Matsumoto S, Nakanishi R, Li D, Alani A, Rezaeian P, Prabhu S, Abraham J, Fahmy MA, Dailing C, Flores F, Hamal S, Broersen A, Kitslaar PH, Budoff MJ. Aged Garlic Extract Reduces Low Attenuation Plaque in Coronary Arteries of Patients with Metabolic Syndrome in a Prospective Randomized Double-Blind Study. J Nutr. 2016 Feb;146(2):427S-432S.
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