Coronary heart disease, also called coronary artery disease, affects about 14 million men and women in the United States. It occurs over years, when plaque builds up in the artery walls to such an extent that it drastically slows or cuts off the flow of blood to the heart. This process then denies the heart the oxygen- and nutrient-rich blood that it needs to do its work, which is pumping blood throughout the body.
In fact, according to cardiologist Dr. Chauncey W. Crandall, the heart needs to produce every day the amount of energy equal to driving a truck 20 miles. It takes tremendous energy, he says, to propel blood through the 60,000 miles of blood vessels. Yet many people pay closer attention to their car than their heart.
A major cause of plaque build-up in the artery walls is an unhealthy diet high in cholesterol and other forms of fat, but smoking and the lack of exercise accelerate the deposit of fats (plaque) in the artery wall, causing a hardening of the arteries. This process is referred to as atherosclerosis.
Millions of Americans have cholestorol levels they should be concerned about, according to Crandall. “Bad cholestorol,” he says, should less than 100. HDL, or good cholesterol should be about 60 or more. Your total cholesrerol should be no more than 200.
Crandall promotes a “heart-healthy powerhouse” formulation made up of plant sterols, the plant version of cholesterol found in many fruits, vegetables, seeds, nots, beans and cereals. His formulation is called Cardio Advanced.