Heart Disease and the chemical TMAO connection - Part 4

Heart Disease and the TMAO connection – Part 4

What does this all mean?

If you eat meat regularly then the gut bacteria and microbiome alters, and your genetic expression changes.  People eating a plant-based wholefood diet do not have the gut bacteria needed to make TMAO, so this is why a plant-eater does not get the negative effects.  It is cumulative.  The more meat you eat, the higher the TMAO you produce after eating meat.  Meat-eaters could be ingesting 100 times more carnitine than plant-eaters daily, therefore creating the chemicals in their gut to grow and produce TMAO.  This in turn creates atherosclerosis and heart disease.

Big belly = heart disease and stroke risk
We know that one of the many signs of heart disease is a large protruding gut or a ‘beer belly’.  Other recent research shows the incredible influence that the gut bacteria play in the health of your heart and the effect of the gut microbes on keeping your arteries clean.  Different mixes of intestinal microbes can determine heart attack or stroke risk.  People on the modern animal-rich, low fibre, constipating, processed, sugar-rich diets carry fewer microbes that make anti-inflammatory compounds, and they have more inflammation-triggering bacteria.

So the people with heart problems are making more bad inflammatory bacteria and less good anti-inflammatory bacteria. Hence, this is another explanation as to why heart disease patients, who have suffered coronary disease of some sort, get such radical and powerful results when switching to a plant-based wholefood diet and making positive lifestyle changes.

Ironically, the original Latin word for carnitine is ‘carnis’, which is also the root name for ‘carnivore’… 

This is a very interesting twist on the meat-eaters get more heart disease and cancer cliché, eh?

Study by Robert Koeth from Cleveland Clinic Lerner College of Medicine of Case Western Reserve University; et al. “Intestinal microbiota metabolism of L-carnitine, a nutrient in red meat, promotes atherosclerosis”, and Dr Stanley Hazen, Ph.D., Chairman of the department of cellular and molecular medicine, Vice Chair of Translational Research for the Lerner Research Institute, and section head of Preventive Cardiology and Rehabilitation in the Miller Family Heart and Vascular Institute at Cleveland Clinic, as published in Nature Medicine, April doi:10.1038/nm.3145.   This research looked closely at the clinical data of 2,595 patients undergoing elective cardiac evaluations.  As reported by The New York Times on April 7, 2013. Also, study by F.H. Karlsson et al “Symptomatic atherosclerosis is associated with an altered gut metagenome” as published on December 4, 2012 in Nature Communications.  Also studies by T. Hesman Saey “Gut bacteria come in three flavors” as published in Science News, Vol. 179, May 21, 2011, p. 14., and “Gut microbes may foster heart disease” as published in Science News Online, April 7, 2011.  As reported by Science Daily and The New York Times, on April 7, 2013, The New York Daily News, The L.A. Times, The Telegraph, The New Straits Times and gizmodo.com on April 8, 2013, care2.com on April 10, 2013, Voice of America on April 9, 2013, The Global Post on April 11, 2013, theeconomist.com on April 13, 2013, The Daily Mail on April 15, 2013. 


Posted: Sunday 16 February 2014