Here is more specifics. Damage to EPCs. That means exposure to cigarette smoke greatly exposes arteries to risk of damage sites being plugged with blockage initiating immune cells rather than correctly repaired by EPCs.
"The researchers learned that in healthy nonsmokers, even brief exposure to secondhand smoke resulted in blood vessel dysfunction and interfered with the activity of endothelial progenitor cells (EPCs), which are believed to play a key role in repairing blood vessels. The damage to the EPCs appeared to last as long as a day."
As a teenager, I played cards every weekend, and many summer evenings with 3 friends who all smoked. It did not seem to affect me, but considering the magnitude of my blockages at age 53, I think the 5 years with my smoking friends may have been one more major factor for me.
Plus three years with at home smokers of a step-mother and her son.
Combined effects of 2nd hand smoke, teenagers eating a high fat diet with minimal anti-oxidants, stress of growing up, and excess transfats from chips, cookies and crackers, is almost certain serious heart disease 20 - 40 years later.View Thread
"Vigorous cholesterol lowering by low fat food and lipid active drugs, control of hypertension, and smoking abstinence stabilize plaque and markedly reduce coronary events and angina pectoris with greater improvement in survival than reported for elective invasive revascularization procedures."
Some of us get bypasses, then follow all lifestyle recommendations. To recover, we have to stop the disease process. And most of it is diet.View Thread
" The anthocyanins and tannins in pomegranates boost levels of paraoxonase, an enzyme that breaks down oxidized cholesterol, preventing the development of plaque on artery walls. Plus, this enzyme attacks the fatty steaks and plaque on artery walls, breaking them down and helping to regress athlerosclerosis."
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19141295?itool=EntrezSystem2.PEntrez.Pubmed.Pubmed_ResultsPanel.Pubmed_RVDocSum&ordinalpos=8 Found in: "Foods rich in quercetin include capers (1800 mg/kg)[12>, lovage (1700 mg/kg), apples (44 mg/kg), tea (Camellia sinensis), onion, especially red onion (higher concentrations of quercetin occur in the outermost rings[13>), red grapes, citrus fruit, tomato, broccoli and other leafy green vegetables, and a number of berries including cherry, raspberry, bog whortleberry (158 mg/kg, fresh weight), lingonberry (cultivated 74 mg/kg, wild 146 mg/kg), cranberry (cultivated 83 mg/kg, wild 121 mg/kg), chokeberry (89 mg/kg), sweet rowan (85 mg/kg), rowanberry (63 mg/kg), sea buckthorn berry (62 mg/kg), crowberry (cultivated 53 mg/kg, wild 56 mg/kg),[14> and the fruit of the prickly pear cactus. A recent study found that organically grown tomatoes had 79% more quercetin than "conventionally gr own".[15>
A study[16> by the University of Queensland, Australia, has also indicated the presence of quercetin in varieties of honey, including honey derived from eucalyptus and tea tree flowers.[17>"
In a study with rats, "... consumption of pistachio as 20% of daily caloric intake leads to significant improvement in HDL and TC/HDL ratio and inhib its LDL cholesterol oxidation. These results suggest that pistachio may be beneficial for both prevention and treatment of coronary artery disease."
PON 1 HDL activity increase: EVOO 6%, EVOO-GT 10% > What is PON1 ? Pon1 is paraoxonase, an HDL enzyme that enhances the benefits of HDL, making it more effective, essentially an invisible rise in your HDL count.
HDL-mediated macrophage cholesterol efflux: EVOO 42%, EVOO-GT 139 % !!!! That means blockage size regression, plain and simple.
Atherosclerotic lesion size of mice was significantly reduced by: EVOO 11%, or EVOO-GT 20% . Well of course, that is a measure of the efflux above.
Olive Oil is beneficial in atherosclerosis, and Olive Oil enhanced with Green Tea polyphenol extracts is even better.View Thread
Oxidized LDL is not only directly involved in expanding foam cells and arterial blockages, but does its own direct damage to arterial cells (endothelium). Its presence apparently helps induce arterial calcification, disturbs mitochondria, and reduces Nitric Oxide availability which which in turn reduces arterial flexibility.
Ginkgo Biloba extract helps turn the tide against all these ox-LDL negative results, and the more one takes, the more the better it counteracts the ox-LDL.
Of course, if you can bring down your LDL, and keep your anti-oxidants high throughout the day, then the need for the Ginkgo Biloba extract is reduced or eliminated.
If you have high LDL, then the Ginkgo Biloba is much more important because getting enough anti-oxidants is much more difficult.View Thread