My Family Story of Dealing with Heart Disease - And How We Beat It!

My Family Story of Dealing with Heart Disease -  And How We Beat It!

Heart disease claims the lives of over 836,000 Americas each year. 23,000 Americans die each day, averaging one death every 38 seconds - and my dad could have easily been another number in that statistic. 

My dad, like most men, is stubborn. He claimed to have "the right" to eat and drink whatever he wanted whenever he wanted it. For the majority of his life, he did not go to regular doctors checkups, take supplements or eat well. Although I have to give him kudos for exercising occasionally. This lifestyle eventually caught up to him, in his mid to late 50's, he started slowing down, feeling fatigued and gaining a lot of weight. 

After he turned 57, my mother and I started becoming more concerned about his health. I had been trying to "lead the horse to the water", but he was not drinking! In February of 2016, I was advocating Heart Health Month and encouraging my patients to get a heart CT scan. I pressed the importance upon my dad, and through conversation learned that he had been experiencing symptoms of heart disease for a few months. This was news to my mother and me, as he had not shared with us that he had stopped exercising due to shortness of breath and tightening feeling in his chest. He also had tingling in his left shoulder and arm. 

Long story short, we made him get that CT scan! His calcium score came back elevated, indicating plaque build up. We then took him to a functional minded cardiologist, Dr. Reddy, who then preformed a stress test. He was unable to even finish the exercise, the results detected that 2 of his arteries were about 99% blocked and he was rushed to the hospital for an emergency stint.

It was predicted that he was likely minutes away from a heart attack. 

Once the surgeon got started implanting the stints, it was a bigger mess than expected. The intention was to put one stint in each of the 2 clogged arteries, however, the plaque build up was so bad, it took 3 stints to open up just one artery and this was all they could accomplish at that time, leaving the second artery still 99% blocked.  

The plan was to schedule the second stint implant a month later, well... this is where I intervened! 

We told the surgeon to give us 6 months to reverse the plaque naturally before scheduling another surgery. He literally laughed at me. 

With the help of his cardiologist, we convinced my dad to adopt a very strict whole food plant-based diet, take specifically targeted supplements and change his lifestyle. I strongly believe, through my studies and clinical experience, that we could reverse the plaque in the other blocked artery naturally. 

My dad's whole food plant-based diet also included no soy or grains, limiting fruit, and implementing fasting! Studies show fasting plays a HUGE role in reversing chronic conditions. While there are several different ways to effectively fast, my father chose to fast for 36 hours, once a week, for 6 weeks. Then after 6 weeks, he fasted for 36 hours twice a month for the remainder of the 6 month period. He was diligent in taking his supplements daily, I included them below. 

After 6 months, he went back to his cardiologist, he did a nuclear stress test, ultrasound, and an EKG. His cardiologist told him that when looking at his test results, any cardiologist would say that you have no heart issues and never did. 

There was no detection of a blocked artery, leading his doctor to agree that his heart disease had been completely reversed. How about that! 

As you can see in the photo below, my dad lost a few lbs.! My dad's experience was also eye-opening for my little brother. I helped guide my brother on his own journey to improve his health naturally so that he can likely avoid being in the same spot my father was in 3 years ago. 

nutrition for heart disease

In my line of work, we are not "allowed" to claim that nutrition can heal or reverse disease and chronic conditions, but my dad has a powerful testimony to help you form your own opinion on the power of food as medicine, so I will let you be the judge! 

I am so blessed to have the opportunity to improve the health of others, naturally. Words can not explain how proud I am of my father and how grateful I am that he is thriving and will be with us for decades to come! 


My TOP 10 Heart Healthy Supplements

1. Magnesium Glycinate is shown to regulate blood pressure and improve atrial fibrillation in addition to reguating over 300 different biochemical functions in the body. 

2.  Vitamin-d3-plus-k2 may improve blood pressure and lessen chances or coronary artery disease while also improving mood, bone health, and immune function. K2 should be taken with D3 and has been shown to help move calcium deposits from other areas in the body and place them into the bones where they belong.

3. CoQ10 becomes crucial after age 50 when our natural production declines and is critical for those taking a statin drug. CoQ10 is needed to provide energy to the heart and vital organs for proper function. 

4. Fish Oil is known as one of the best supplements that you can take to regulate cholesterol levels and triglycerides while also improving inflammation that can lead to heart disease.  

5. Vitamin C may be one of the most important vitamins to take for immune support and heart health. Vitamin C has been linked to improving cholesterol and blood pressure while helping with critical collagen production and lowering inflammation in the arteries. 

6. Niacin is a B vitamin that has been found to help regulate cholesterol naturally and raise your HDL cholesterol while also boosting brain function.

7. D-Ribose has been shown to assist in reversing heart failure, increasing cardiac surgery recovery and restoring that internal energy known as ATP that the heart needs to function properly.

8. Nitric Oxide improves circulation in the body and expands blood vessels which increase blood flow. This is beneficial to the heart by decreasing plaque buildup and blood clotting. 

9. Annatto E is a superior form of vitamin E that has been shown to greatly improve cholesterol by up to 20% in 3 months while also lowering triglycerides.  

10. L-Carnitine is a fat-transporting compound that is essential for heart function. It has been shown to improve triglycerides, blood flow, cholesterol, and arrhythmias while also improving energy levels. 

Note: while I consider all of these wonderful supplements to be extremely beneficial for your heart, they ARE NOT a replacement for a healthy diet! They work beautifully alongside a healthy diet and lifestyle! 

A 20 Minute Workout That Burns Fat for 48 Hours!

A 20 Minute Workout That Burns Fat for 48 Hours!

If you are like me, you know the importance of exercising for your physical and mental health, but it is hard to find time to work out! That is why I love to participate and recommend HIIT workouts! In just 20 minutes, you can complete a butt-kicking workout that will allow your body to burn fat for up to 48 hrs!

Here are all the details....enjoy!

The All-Out HIIT Workout

The formula for a HIIT workout is simple: 20 seconds of all-out effort, followed by 10 seconds of rest. HIIT protocols are considered high-intensity interval workout. There's not one specific workout or plan that's best; you can use almost any exercise as long as you adhere to the 20/10 work to rest ratio. This will allow you to keep your workouts fresh and interesting, as you can always change your exercises to try something new.

Why try HIIT workouts?

Research found that burst interval cardio could burn more than 3 times more body fat than moderate cardio. The reason burst training works is because it produces a unique metabolic response in your body. Intermittent sprinting causes your body to not burn as much fat during exercise but after exercise your metabolism stays elevated and will continue to burn fat for the next 24-48 hours! Also, chemicals called catecholamine’s are produced which allow more fat to be burned and this causes increased fat oxidation which drives greater weight loss.

HIIT workouts are meant to be challenging, so be prepared to push yourself beyond your limits. Gather your equipment and give one of these HIIT routines a try.

To start, pick 4-5 exercises from various categories listed bleow. Some days you may want to focus solely on one specific body area (i.e. all arms or all cardio) but other days, chose to do full body workouts by picking one exercise from each category.

You will also want to download a HIIT timer app on your smartphone.

These exercises can be done outdoors, at the gym or in the privacy of your own home. Grab a partner for accountability or do them solo. Most of all, have fun with it!

Lower Body Tabata Workouts

  • Bodyweight squat
  • Bodyweight lunges
  • Jump squat
  • Dumbbell or kettlebell goblet squats
  • Ski jumps

Upper Body Tabata Workouts

  • Push-ups (strict or from knees)
  • Triceps dip off of a chair or bench
  • Overhead Press with 5- 20 lb weights
  • Bicep Curls with 5- 20 lb weight
  • Tricep Curls with 5- 20 lb weight

Total Body Tabata Workouts

  • Dumbbell or kettlebell ground to overhead
  • Mountain climbers
  • Kettlebell or dumbbell swing
  • Burpees

Core Tabata Workouts

  • Crunches
  • Sit ups
  • Russian Twists with 5-20 lb weight
  • Bicycle crunches

Cardiovascular Tabata Workouts

  • Jump rope
  • Jumping jacks
  • Stationary Bike
  • Stair steps
  • High knees
  • Running in place or on treadmill


Example Workout #1:
Bodyweight Squats: 8 rounds of 20 seconds all out, 10 seconds rest.
Rest 1 minute
Push Ups: 8 rounds of 20 seconds all out, 10 seconds rest.
Rest 1 minute
Kettlebell Swings: 8 rounds of 20 seconds all out, 10 seconds rest.
Rest 1 minute
Burpees: 8 rounds of 20 seconds all out, 10 seconds rest.
Done: 19 minute workout complete!
Example Workout #2:
High Knees: 8 rounds of 20 seconds all out, 10 seconds rest
Rest 1 minute
Bicep Curls: 8 rounds of 20 seconds all out, 10 seconds rest.
Rest 1 minute
Mountain Climbers: 8 rounds of 20 seconds all out, 10 seconds rest.
Rest 1 minute
Crunches: 8 rounds of 20 seconds all out, 10 seconds rest.
Rest 1 minute
Lunges: 8 rounds of 20 seconds all out, 10 seconds rest.
Done: 24 minute workout complete!