The Benefits of Taurine On Your Heart – InVite Health Podcast, Episode 189
Invite Health Podcast, Episode hosted by Jerry Hickey. Ph
Today we’re discussing the benefits of taurine on your heart, blood vessels, and blood pressure.
What is taurine?
Taurine is a unique amino acid. When you eat protein, it is broken down into amino acids, which are then arranged in chains in different combinations and used for the structure and function of our organs and systems in our body. Amino acids are combined to create enzymes, neurotransmitters, some hormones such as insulin, and also structural components of the body. Taurine is different. It is not combined with other amino acids. It works alone. Taurine is a free amino sulfonic acid found in many of our tissues. For instance, it is used in our bile to break down fats from food so we can absorb them. We also use taurine also to detoxify chemicals in our kidneys and liver. It also plays an important role in the functioning of our heart, our muscles, our eyes, our brain, and certain blood cells called platelets.†
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There are certain foods that contain the nutrient. Here are some options:
- The dark meat of chicken and other poultry
- Fish and shellfish, like mussels
You can also make taurine. It can also be synthesized in our body from the commonly-absorbed amino acid L-Cysteine. Vegetarians and vegans can have lower levels of taurine due to their diet. I commonly recommend some taurine to vegetarians along with several other supplements they may be lower in. Taurine is guilty by association because it is often added as a protective ingredient to energy drinks. It helps protect the body from the jittery effects of excessive caffeine intake. It is not a stimulant.†
Heart Health Benefits
A lot of data from all over the globe indicates that taurine helps lower our risk of developing heart disease or suffering with a stroke or heart attack. Studies performed in overweight or obese patients indicate that it may reduce triglycerides and improve lipid metabolism, increase adiponectin levels, and decrease inflammation and lipid peroxidation. In diabetics, it may help reduce the risk of kidney damage, also known as diabetic nephropathy.†
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Taurine is a conditionally essential amino acid, meaning we can usually make enough to meet our body’s needs. Under certain circumstances, however, we cannot make enough, so supplementing becomes important. This is true in people with high blood pressure and in patients with congestive heart failure. Studies show it reduces blood pressure in people with hypertension. It may reduce blood pressure by decreasing the levels of plasma epinephrine, also known as adrenaline, which is the fight or flight neurotransmitter. When you release epinephrine, it squeezes your blood vessels and makes your heart beat faster, which then raises your blood pressure. Taurine can help block excessive release of epinephrine.†
Research strongly links higher taurine levels and significantly lower rates of dying from heart disease or suffering with a stroke or heart attack. Taurine seems to work very well with the addition of the mineral magnesium for heart health and blood pressure control. Tune into the full podcast episode for more details about how taurine can help the body.†
Questions about how this important nutrient can benefit the health of your heart? Leave us a comment below to join the discussion now!
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