Micronutrients helpful for heart failure patients

December 07, 2005

According to a report from investigators in Germany and the UK, multivitamin supplementation can improve heart function and quality-of-life in chronic heart failure patients.

"The vitamin story has been confused with studies examining the response to single vitamin supplements in relatively low-risk patients," Dr. Klaus K. A. Witte from Castle Hill Hospital, Cottingham, told Reuters Health. Witte explained that, "chronic heart failure patients are at higher risk and might have multiple deficiencies. Replacing just one micronutrient might expose deficiency elsewhere, so a combination is important.'

Witte studied the effects of multivitamin use in 32 patients over the age of 70 for an extended period. Patients taking the multivitamins experienced improvements in cardiac pumping ability after 295 days of continual supplementation.

Dr. Witte recommends, "a combined multivitamin supplement along with zinc, copper, and selenium. I also feel strongly that a high dose Coenzyme-Q10 is important. Most currently available supplements do not have enough Co-Q10." This study was reported in the European Heart Journal.

Commentary by Jerry Hickey, R.Ph.

At the start of this study the impact of the supplements Green Tea Extract and CLA were not even thought of yet - studies show these both impact weight.

Australian scientists find proof that stress makes you sick

A group from Sydney's Garvan Institute found that neuropeptide Y (NPY) is released into the bloodstream during times of stress and undermines the body's immune system by suppressing the cells that look out for and destroy pathogens that make you sick.

Fabienne Mackay of the Institute states, "That stress makes you sick is no longer a myth, it is a reality and we need to take it seriously."

Herbert Herzog, a scientist from the Institute, explained that knowing how NPY affects blood pressure and heart rates, and now the immune system, will help tackle some illnesses.

Multiple sclerosis, Rheumatoid Arthritis, Crohn's disease, Type 1Diabetes, and Lupus are illnesses linked to stress, the researchers said.

These findings are published in the December 4th issue of the Journal of Experimental Medicine.