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5 Surprising Herbs to Support Heart Health

Updated: Feb 10


% surprising herbs to support heart health


February is all about matters of the heart, be it love or heart health. It is also American Heart Health Month, a time when everyone is encouraged to focus on their cardiovascular health. At a time when many of us spend more time looking at screens and eating packaged or processed food, prioritizing heart health has become essential. The good news is that amidst the chaos of the modern world, nature has kindly provided us with a variety of plant partners and herbs to support heart health naturally. Join us as we journey through the natural world and take a closer look at some heart-healthy herbs that have long been recognized for supporting, nourishing, and protecting our hearts.


Why Heart Health is Important

During your lifetime, your heart will beat approximately 2.5 billion times, pumping millions of gallons of blood to every part of your body. This steady flow of blood carries oxygen, nutrients such as vitamins, minerals, proteins, enzymes, fuel, hormones, and other compounds, and a host of essential cells. Poor lifestyle, diet, and sleep habits can all have an effect on the heart, leading to heart disease, the leading cause of death in the U.S.


How Can You Support Your Heart Naturally?

Some factors that contribute to heart disease, such as age, gender, and family history, are unavoidable. However, there are also several controllable risk factors that you can work to improve in your life. 


Three of the major manageable risk factors for heart disease are high blood pressure, high cholesterol, and smoking. Leading a heart-healthy lifestyle, managing blood pressure and cholesterol levels, and making healthy choices through diet and exercise can significantly reduce one's risk of heart disease. 


Ease your nervous system and calm your heart with meditation and mindful breathing practices. Make time to exercise daily, even if it is only a short walk or other slow-paced activity. The important part is to get moving. For the sake of your heart, find time to prioritize self-care, even if only for a few minutes a day. 


5 Surprising Herbs to Support Heart Health


1 - Dandelion

I could write a whole book based just on my love of the dandelion. In our home, we use it for everything from food to medicine and skincare. Dandelions are probably among the most easily recognized “weeds” around, but they weren’t always considered weeds. Long before the invention of laws, the dandelion was prized as both food and medicine, and every part, from its flowers to its roots, is edible. This powerhouse plant contains compounds that may have cardioprotective effects, including decreasing triglycerides and reducing cholesterol levels. Dandelions are also rich in potassium, vitamin C, vitamin E, iron, calcium, and folate.


How to Use It: 

You can add the fresh green leaves to salads or cook them like spinach, dry and grind the roots to add to your morning coffee, place the root powder in capsules, or use the whole plant to make a dandelion tincture. 


Dandelion Tincture

2 - Turmeric

There’s no mistaking the rich gold hue of turmeric, and while this spice is commonly found in Indian cuisine, it’s also a powerful protector of heart health. Turmeric’s active ingredient is curcumin, which not only gives the spice its rich, yellow hue but provides potent soothing, anti-inflammatory, and antioxidant properties. It can help soothe scar tissue, prevent blood clots, support healthy heart tissue, and help maintain the heart wall's thickness, a vital component in maintaining proper heart function. Additionally, turmeric can also support healthy levels of LDL cholesterol and triglycerides. 


How To use it: 

As a cooking spice, toss it with roasted vegetables or add it to rice, noodle, or soup dishes. Take it as a capsule, drink it in a tea, or make a tincture. It’s important to note that you should always combine turmeric with black pepper to increase its bioavailability. 


3 - Rosemary

Beyond its culinary appeal, rosemary is a powerful guardian of heart health. This common kitchen herb is known to be high in anti-inflammatory and antioxidant compounds. Rosemary has a history of cardiovascular benefits and is praised for its ability to improve circulation, encouraging better blood flow by gently coaxing blood vessels to relax. It has been shown to decrease blood pressure significantly.  


How To use it: 

Use it on meats and salad dressings, brew it into tea, infuse it into oils for cooking, or create a rosemary tincture. 


4 - Motherwort

Motherwort is unique in the way that it cares for the heart because it contains compounds that not only support the cardiovascular system but also help to reduce tension and anxiety. This powerful herb contains the alkaloidal constituent leonurine, which acts as a vasodilator, relaxing the heart muscle. It also promotes healthy blood circulation and controls cardiac rhythms. As a heart tonic, motherwort is used to support the treatment of heart failure, tachycardia, irregular heart rhythms, and hypertension. It also relaxes the heart muscles and helps to reduce the formation of blood clots that can cause a heart attack. 


How To use it: 

Enjoy it in a cup of motherwort tea, or take it daily as a heart-supporting tincture.


Rose

I bet you didn’t know that the rose, often thought of as a symbol of love, also offers a powerhouse of therapeutic benefits, particularly to the cardiovascular system. Rose petals contain a treasure trove of flavonoids and antioxidants that work to improve blood vessel health and reduce inflammation. The extracts, oils, and essences have been found to help decrease systolic blood pressure as well as mean arterial pressure. They also strengthen the heart muscles and assist in balancing the emotions.


How To use it: 

Roses make a lovely addition to tea blends, or they can be infused into oils, oxymels, and tinctures. A note of caution: never use commercially purchased roses for medicinal purposes, as they are sprayed with pesticides, fungicides, and other toxic chemicals to ensure they look lush and lovely in your bouquet. 


A Quick Disclaimer:

Remember that just because something is “natural” does not always mean it is safe for every person. When it comes to herbal medicine, many plants should be avoided when pregnant or nursing, and some that can cause extreme interactions with prescription and over-the-counter medicine. Before using herbal preparations, always do your research, speak to a professional regarding any significant concerns, and never fail to seek medical advice when needed.


Keep Your Heart Healthy

When it comes to heart health, small steps, combined with plant allies, can make a significant impact on your wellness journey! What are your favorite herbs for heart health? Tell us all about them in the comments below, and as always, until next time, 


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Surprising herbs to support heart health

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