Heart disease is the leading cause of death for humans in industrialized nations. However, the disease is virtually nonexistent in most animals. According to Dr. Matthias Rath, author of Eradicating Heart Disease, it isn’t impossible for animals to get heart disease, but it is a very rare occurrence, regardless of the animal’s diet, activity level, or other factors.
Dr. Rath, a colleague of two-time Nobel prizewinner Dr. Linus Pauling, explains that the reason behind this phenomenon is that most animals are able to synthesize their own vitamin C, whereas humans don’t have this ability. Vitamin C plays a major role in producing collagen, a protein that provides strength and stability to all of our tissues, including the arteries. Collagen forms into fibers that are stronger and more resilient than iron wire.
A severe vitamin C deficiency can cause scurvy, characterized by a complete breakdown of body tissues. This disease was common among sailors of the 18th century, who were required to eat a diet severely lacking in vitamin C for prolonged periods of time. In 1757, British Navy physician James Lind discovered that when these sailors were supplied with limes, lemons, and oranges, they didn’t get scurvy. Soon after this discovery was made, Captain James Cook ordered that every British sailor be given lemons and limes so that they could be deployed on long voyages without contracting the disease. Later, after the British government began requiring that staple foods be fortified with vitamin C, scurvy virtually disappeared.
Dr. Owen R. Fonorow, scientific journalist and founder of the Vitamin C Foundation, suggests that heart disease may be a misnomer and that the correct terminology is chronic scurvy. According to Dr. Pauling, humans now obtain enough vitamin C from their diets to prevent all-out scurvy; however, we aren’t consuming enough to preserve the strength of our artery walls. Pauling suggests that the walls of the arteries surrounding the heart are the most susceptible to continual stress, more so than any other tissue in the body. Each time our heart beats, these arteries are stretched and flattened, and without sufficient collagen reinforcement, the arteries become inflamed and develop tiny lesions and cracks.
When our bodies do not have sufficient collagen, the body attempts to repair our arteries by using alternative substances. These include cholesterol and other substances that attach to the artery wall. This replacement is not an ideal long-term solution because after several years, the repeated cholesterol deposits cause the arteries to become inflamed and narrow. This condition leads to a very high risk for heart attack and stroke, which is usually triggered by either a clot formed at the narrowed artery site or a piece of plaque breaking off and blocking the artery downstream.
When this biochemical process is thoroughly examined, it becomes clear that high cholesterol is not a leading cause of heart disease. Cholesterol levels in bears and other animals that hibernate naturally rise to more than three times the amount present in the average human. The difference is that these animals also produce high levels of vitamin C, which stabilizes their artery walls. As a result, they do not develop plaque or cholesterol deposits.
Although heart disease is more dangerous and life-threatening to elderly people, it affects people of all ages. After examining the bodies of American soldiers who were killed in the Korean War, scientists found that 77 percent of them already showed signs of advanced heart disease. The average age of these soldiers was 22.
According to Dr. Pauling, the disease process is slowed or halted once we begin taking high amounts of vitamin C. Pauling found that when we do this, our existing arterial plaques may begin to be broken up and taken from the arteries. He discovered that this removal process is more rapid if the vitamin C is taken in conjunction with the amino acid lysine, which helps to loosen the deposits from the arteries. Pauling recommended at least 3,000 milligrams of vitamin C daily as a preventative measure, and higher levels of vitamin C combined with lysine for those with preexisting heart conditions.
Lower doses have been shown to be ineffective, but a single high dose once a day is also ineffective. A few hours after taking a large dose, most of the vitamin C is excreted or used up. Animals make vitamin C on a continuous basis throughout the day. Their bodies produce an enzyme that converts glucose to vitamin C, and they produce hundreds of times more of the vitamin than humans can get from food, and thousands of times more when they are ill. The Vitamin C Foundation proposes taking 500 milligrams every four hours to protect against the development of heart disease.
Every person has a different physiological identity, and the effectiveness of vitamin C varies from person to person. An adequate dosage can be determined by examining “bowel tolerance,” or taking just under the amount that causes diarrhea. If we get sick, our bowel tolerance may increase by ten to one hundred times. For this reason, the Vitamin C Foundation recommends 6,000 to 18,000 milligrams daily in combination with 2,000 to 6,000 milligrams of lysine. This dosage may seem high, but when we look at the amounts that animals naturally produce, it is comparatively low.
Michael Locklear is the cofounder of The Global Peace Project, and has served as its President since 1986. He is the author of The Ultimate Guide to Total Health, and he has conducted more than thirty years of research into the science of the mind, health and nutrition, human behavior, and emotional well-being. He exposes the lies propagated by the government, medical professionals, the food industry, and the media and unveils the truth about what it takes to break the hypnotic trances that block our ability to achieve total health, wealth, and happiness.
For information on Michael’s research, visit his site, Natural-Remedies-for-Total-Health.com, which provides well-researched and scientifically supported advice on how to achieve a balance of the mind, brain, and body, resulting in total health.