Lights, camera, action – your heart wants to be IN THE LIGHT

heart dancing in the lightAn oxygen shortage is often the end for a heart…..

This is the fundamental problem when someone suffers a heart attack. A blockage suddenly deprives the heart tissue of oxygen – no oxygen causes among other things, serious energy shortages.

Oxygen is necessary to burn fuel, any fuel. But the body has two fuel supplies – the low octane version (glucose) and the high octane version (fat). The heart can use both, but prefers sugar because it is a lot easier to use and requires less oxygen to burn.

Saving a heart under attack

Saving a heart, in the midst of a heart attack, is all about restoring that supply of oxygen, so the heart cells can burn enough energy, to keep going.

Treating a heart attack involves a two prong approach

  • First doctors kick starting the muscle using resuscitation techniques, and then
  • They focus on clearing the pipes, to get the oxygen flowing, by using clot busting drugs.

But fueling the heart muscle’s power factories is also important.

Fuel shortages lead to melt downs

Heart attack victims tend to be insulin resistant, which means heart muscle cells are already facing difficulties getting fuel.

The double whammy of very little oxygen and no food is clearly catastrophic.

Researchers from the University of Colorado School of Medicine have shined the spot light on feeding tired heart muscles.

Lighting up the heart

The team discovered, a dose of strong light, is all that it takes to get the glucose flowing into the starving muscles. Animal heart attack victims (man-made heart attacks) ,had less damage to their heart’s and better survival stats, when they received a little light therapy.

Regular readers will know, I am a big fan of soaking up the sun, because of it’s ability to switch on vitamin D synthesis. Too little vitamin D upsets body chemistry big time.

But the benefits of shining a little light on the heart – don’t seem to be coming from vitamin D directly. The team discovered it has to do with a protein called Period 2.

Circadian rhythm sets the feeding schedule

The body can and does tell time – it uses the sun as its reference point, not your alarm clock. The body’s Greenwich Mean Time is set in the brain, but individual organs, keep time with their own clock, sometimes not as efficiently as they should.

Period 2 is one of the protein’s involved in controlling the timing of things in the heart. Period 2’s release is stimulated by light, so it controls what happens during the day. One of the things period 2 influences is which fuel source is used by the heart.

As a rule, we tend to use glucose during the day and burn fat at night – this is why getting enough sleep is so important if you’re trying to lose weight that is fat, not muscle. Period 2 is the control switch for daytime sugar burning – it is mobilizing the day shift.

Put your heart under the spot light

Most heart attacks happen in the middle of the night, this would correspond with the time when Period 2 levels are at their lowest, lending support for the idea that your heart may also appreciate a little soak in the sun.

If you’re indoors all the time – shine the spot light on your heart, so it can enjoy a little sugar action and charge up the fuel supply of the heart battery.

NOTE : If you know someone recovering from a heart attack – encourage them to add a soak in the sun to their daily dose of baby aspirin and other heart meds.

Adora2b-elicited Per2 stabilization promotes a HIF-dependent metabolic switch crucial for myocardial adaptation to ischemia. Nature Medicine (2012) 18:774-782. Tobias Eckle, Katherine Hartmann, Stephanie Bonney, Susan Reithel, Michel Mittelbronn, Lori A Walker, Brian D Lowes, Jun Han, Christoph H Borchers, Peter M Buttrick, Douglas J Kominsky, Sean P Colgan, Holger K Eltzschig.  

Interested in learning more about the chemistry behind better heart health ? 

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Further reading

cholesterol for heart attack rescue heart stem cells doing repairs hearts and christmas lights
Should you feed a heart attack a high fat meal ? All it takes to heal a heart is a piece of heart Your lifestyle turns the lights off in your heart

The 7 Big Spoons™…. are master switches that turn health on.

balance eicosanoids rein in insulin dial down stress sleep vitamin D microflora think
Balance Eicosanoids Rein in insulin Dial down stress Sleep ! Increase Vit D Culivate microflora Think champion

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  1. By » Blog Archive » Round up 28 May – 1 June on June 1, 2012 at 6:50 pm

    [...] Lights, camera, action – your heart wants to be IN THE LIGHT [...]

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