Beneficial Supplements for Atrial Fibrillation That May Improve Symptoms
No one likes to take medication, but for many people, medication is necessary to stay healthy. However, if there are natural supplements that could help their illness, many patients will try them, such as those with atrial fibrillation.
Natural supplements can be used to strengthen your body and improve the rhythm and overall function of your heart. If you suffer from AFib, the following supplements may be beneficial; however, you should talk to your doctor before using them, as they may interfere with any medication you currently use.
Natural treatment for atrial fibrillation can range from herbs to other supplements. The following could help with your AFib symptoms:
Magnesium plays a key role in the function of the heart, and a deficiency of this nutrient is well known to cause rhythm disturbances. Magnesium may be helpful when taken as a supplement in oral form. High doses of magnesium can interfere with prescriptions drugs like antibiotics, blood pressure medication and diabetes medications.
Most people can get enough magnesium in their diet in the following foods:
- Whole grains
Vitamin C can also help AFib patients, according to research studies. Supplementation with this nutrient was found to reduce the risk of the recurrence of AFib in patients who received cardio version (a procedure that sends electric shocks to the heart to restore normal rhythm), suggests a 2005 study featured in the International Journal of Cardiology.
Vitamin C can also decrease inflammation of the heart associated with AFib. High doses of vitamin C (more than 1,000 mg daily) can interfere with a variety of prescription drugs including blood thinners, aluminum based anti-acids, and some non-steroid anti inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs).
Keep eating those bananas! If you don’t have enough potassium in your system, you are at risk for AFib — this electrolyte helps keep your heart from beating too fast.
You can get potassium from potassium-rich foods or take it as a supplement. The suggested dosage is 1,500 to 2,000 mg a day.
Coenzyme Q10, or CoQ10, is available in the vitamin aisle of your supermarket and available in many dosages. It is a natural substance in every cell of the body.
It helps the mitochondria produce energy within the cell. All in all, it works to maintain your heart’s functioning. It is advised to take 100 and 300 mg of CoQ10 each day.
Fish oil may help decrease abnormal rhythm associated with AFib. Several studies found this supplement beneficial in reducing the risk of heart diseases, cancer and arthritis.
The omega-3 fatty acids found in abundance in fish oil are the key ingredients responsible for these health benefits. Fish oil influences the heart function by improving the cholesterol levels, blood pressure, decreasing the risk of heart attacks and strokes, as well as abnormal heart rhythm (especially in those who already had a heart attack). Fish oil also prevents stiffness and hardening of the arteries and prevents blood clots.
Fish oil can heighten the effects of blood thinners like aspirin and warfarin since it has blood thinning qualities. It can also interact with diabetes medications, immune suppressant drugs like cyclosporine and steroids. Adding fish oil to cholesterol medication and NSAIDs appears to increase the effectiveness of this medication.
A randomized 2013 controlled study published in the Journal of American College of Cardiology evaluated the benefits of supplementation with omega-3 fatty acids, vitamins C and E for the prevention of atrial fibrillation following heart surgery. The incidence of AFib was significantly lower in the participants who took this supplement (9.7 percent) versus placebo group that received dummy pills (32 percent). The patients who took omega-3 combined with vitamins C and E also showed less inflammation.
Other Things That Can Reduce AFib Symptoms
- Avoid beverages with caffeine, such as coffee, some herbal teas, or other products with this stimulant
- Get enough sleep
- Reduce stress
- Practice yoga, ideally three times a week
- Avoid excessive alcohol consumption