President Clinton made headlines in September 2004 with the discovery of too much heart arteries cholesterol.
At the young age of fifty-eight, four arteries to his heart were clogged. Some of them were nearly 90% blocked.
One commentator attributed the problem to going off of his cholesterol-lowering drug. Another suggested it was President Bill’s love of southern fried cooking and fast food restaurants that caused his plumbing to stop up.
One cardiologist commented that this publicity had middle-aged men scurrying to his office for checkups.
Not a bad idea. The first sign of a problem for 30% of heart attack victims is sudden death. This problem is not limited to men. Fifty percent of the heart attacks now occur in women.
As the former president lay in the hospital awaiting the surgeon’s knife he commented that he was "a little scared."
I'm Gene Millen, and I can empathize with him. Although it's been nearly 21years ago, it seems like yesterday that a skilled heart surgeon, sawed open my chest and stitched in bypasses to six of my heart arteries cholesterol.
Six bypasses isn't a record but it’s not bad for a 59-year-old non-smoker with normal cholesterol and blood pressure and no weight problem.
So what went wrong?
Even my favorite detectives, Hercule Poirot and Sherlock Holmes would have an impossible task in solving this crime.
Some would say that my genes were responsible and that I would have been wise to chose healthier parents.
Stanford University researcher and author, Walter Bortz, MD, disagrees. "Heredity has little to do with how long you live," says Bortz. Many scientific studies, including those, which study longevity records of twins, conclude that inherited genes are responsible for only about 20% of our health. It’s not what's in the genes but how we wear them.
The human body is an amazingly complex machine that was designed by our Creator to operate with minimum problems for 100 years or more when given the proper care.
The problem is that most of us maintain our automobile better than we do ourselves.
The conventional wisdom is that high heart arteries cholesterol is the primary cause of clogging the vital arteries that deliver oxygen and nutrients to the heart.
This view is highly promoted by the makers of cholesterol lowering drugs that spend more than 200 million dollars annually for TV and print advertising. In addition they spend several times this amount for drug company representatives visits to doctors and advertising in medical journals.
It would be nice if we could just take a pill and our heart worries would disappear. Maybe someday, but for now the reality is that there are a dozen or more characters who play leading roles in "The Heart Attack Melodrama."
The chief villains are trans fats, sugar, inflammation and oxidation. The hero is good HDL cholesterol and a strong supporting cast includes whole food natural vitamins, heart exercise and omega 3 oils.
To learn how to control
President Clinton and I were fortunate. We beat the odds.
You can do it too!