Everybody knows about the arteries, which deliver oxygen-rich blood from the heart to tissues throughout your body. You may also be familiar with the endothelium, the single layer of cells that line and protect the inner surfaces of your blood vessels. But I doubt if you know about the glycocalyx. Few people do, doctors included.
That is about to change. Recent research has increased our understanding of the critical significance of the glycocalyx in the vascular system and, more importantly, how to support it for better cardiovascular and overall health.
What Is the Glycocalyx?
If you looked at a healthy endothelial cell under an electron microscope, which could magnify things up to 2 million times, you would see it is covered with a fuzzy, hairlike outer coating. This is the glycocalyx, named after the Greek words for “sweet” and “husk” because its main building blocks are polysaccharides (long chains of sugar molecules).
Scientists have long been aware of the essential role of the endothelium in vascular health. In addition to serving as a barrier between the blood and the blood vessels, the endothelium releases numerous signaling molecules. One of particular importance is nitric oxide (NO), which dilates or relaxes the arteries and regulates blood pressure and blood flow. The endothelium is also involved in the control of blood clotting, inflammation, and oxidative stress as well as the growth of new blood vessels.
What this new research reveals is that the glycocalyx is our first line of defense against endothelial and arterial damage. Like the nonstick coating that keeps food from sticking to your frying pan, the ultra-thin, gel-like glycocalyx keeps your arteries slick and smooth.
In addition to ensuring normal blood flow, the glycocalyx also serves as a physical barrier that prevents harmful substances like oxidized LDL cholesterol, fats, inflammatory compounds, and clotting factors from penetrating the endothelium and forming plaque deposits in the artery walls. This is the essence of atherosclerosis and the underlying cause of heart attacks, strokes and other cardiovascular problems.
Now, let’s consider an endothelial cell from an unhealthy artery under intense magnification. The glycocalyx is thin, ragged, uneven, and bare in spots. This is known as glycocalyx dysfunction, and it is bad news for the vascular system.
Glycocalyx dysfunction allows cholesterol, fats and other atherogenic substances to pass through the endothelium and into the arteries. NO production falters and blood pressure rises. Plaque buildup is given free rein, and atherosclerosis sets in. Antioxidant defenses decline, and inflammatory and clotting factors increase.
Unfortunately, the endothelial glycocalyx breaks down rather easily. Smoking, high blood pressure, obesity and aging erode and destroy these delicate structures. Diabetes and consistently elevated blood sugar are especially harmful, but even briefer exposure to excessive glucose in the blood, which occurs after eating sugars and other fast-burning carbohydrates, takes a toll on the glycocalyx.
Repair and Regeneration
You can protect your glycocalyx by adopting a healthy, low-sugar and low-carbohydrate eating plan, avoiding smoking, engaging in moderate-intensity exercise, and controlling your blood pressure and blood sugar. Unfortunately, once damaged, the endothelial glycocalyx rebuilds very slowly.
That’s why I am excited to introduce you to Arterosil, a nutraceutical that has been shown to rapidly restore and rebuild the glycocalyx. Arterosil is derived from a rare seaweed (Monostroma nitidum) that contains specialized polysaccharides similar to those that are abundant in human endothelial glycocalyx. Simply put, it provides your body with polysaccharides that stimulate glycocalyx repair and regeneration.
Results of early research on Arterosil are extraordinary:
- Arterial health: A study conducted at Baylor looked at its effects on arterial elasticity, which is a measure of endothelial health. Within hours of taking Arterosil, arterial elasticity increased by an average of 89.6%.
- Blood pressure: In a three-month study, this nutraceutical markedly lowered diastolic blood pressure, with improvements beginning within the first month.
- Plaque regression: Most remarkable, Arterosil has been shown to actually reverse cardiovascular disease. MRIs of men and women with significant carotid artery plaque who took Arterosil for three months showed an average plaque regression of 46.8% in men and 64% in women.
- Plaque stability: This same study also examined the makeup of the carotid plaques. Most heart attacks and strokes are caused by “vulnerable plaques”: unstable, lipid-filled lesions that are prone to rupture. The plaque regression noted above included not only a significant decrease in overall size but a 56% average reduction of the lipid core.
Should You Take Arterosil?
Individuals with a personal or family history of coronary artery disease, heart attack, stroke, peripheral artery disease, erectile dysfunction, neuropathy, or any other condition marked by compromised blood flow, such as clogged arteries, would obviously benefit from Arterosil. So would anyone who has diabetes or metabolic syndrome, smokes, eats a lot of sugar and carbs or has other risk factors for glycocalyx dysfunction.
However, I believe this nutraceutical has broader uses. There is a reason Arterosil has been called a “master supplement.” Healthy blood vessels are also critical for other organs and systems that depend on robust blood flow. This includes everything from your muscles and skin to your brain and internal organs—in other words, your entire body!
Given the growing awareness of the glycocalyx and the great results our guests are reporting with Arterosil, I guarantee you will be hearing more about this in the future. I am thrilled to be able to give you an early introduction to this remarkable supplement and suggest you consider adding it to your daily regimen.
To order Arterosil, call Hotze Vitamins at 281-646-1659. To schedule a Free Wellness Consultation—via telemedicine or at the Hotze Health & Wellness Center—call us at 281-698-8698 or visit hotzehwc.com.
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