Lifestyle changes (like quitting smoking, eating a healthy diet, and exercising) can positively impact cardiovascular health
Consider taking heart health supplements—such as CoQ10, Fish Oil, and CholestOff®—to support cardiovascular health
Take a proactive approach to support your cardiovascular health—including a look at heart health supplements you might be considering.
From kicking the nicotine habit and eating a healthy diet, to exercising regularly and maintaining a healthy weight, you can make a variety of lifestyle changes that positively impact your cardiovascular health. One simple tool to add to your heart healthy toolbox? Heart health supplements or supplements that support a healthy heart.
Ideally, eating healthy food is the best source for getting the key nutrients you need. That means a diet rich in fruits, vegetables, whole grains, low-fat dairy, healthy oils, and lean meats. For heart health, in particular, the American Heart Association recommends eating a variety of fish—preferably fish containing Omega-3s, like salmon, herring, and trout—at least twice a week.1
But sometimes, life happens: you’re busy, you skip a meal, or you simply make less-than-healthy choices. Plus, some people don’t eat fish, which means they’re likely not getting enough omega-3s. That’s where heart health supplements come into play. Like other vitamins and supplements, those designed specifically to support heart health help you stay ahead of your nutrition.
But what are the best supplements for heart health? Are there specific vitamins good for the heart, especially those that might support the heart? Read on to learn more.
What Are The Best Supplements for Heart Health?†
Here’s a list of the key supplements that help support heart health and maintain healthy functioning.†
A great supplement to help support a healthy heart, Coenzyme Q10 (CoQ10) is a vitamin-like compound found in nearly every cell in your body. As a coenzyme, it helps facilitate important reactions.†
What are the benefits? Helps support heart function and cellular energy production.†
Who should take it? Although your body naturally produces CoQ10, its production decreases as you age. Plus, some statin drugs can also decrease its production. If you’re taking statin drugs—or just want to support your heart as you age—consider taking CoQ10 daily.♦
How does it work? CoQ10 works in the body in a variety of ways. CoQ10 helps support cellular energy production.† CoQ10 exists inside the energy-producing part of cells called the mitochondria where it facilitates the production of cellular energy from the food you eat.† The highest concentrations of cell mitochondria are found in the hardest working cells in the body, such as the heart, making CoQ10 an important nutrient to support heart function.†
♦CoQ10 is not intended to serve as a replacement for statin drug therapy.
For another heart health supplement, consider fish oil.† This supplement provides key eicosapentanoic acid (EPA) and docosahexanoic acid (DHA) omega-3 fatty acids.
What are the benefits? EPA and DHA omega-3 fatty acids are primarily found in fatty fish, such as salmon, halibut, and sardines and help support a healthy heart.† Omega-3s also help support cell membrane flexibility.†
Who should take it? If you don’t regularly eat fish but you want to reap the heart-healthy benefits of fish oil, consider a fish oil supplement.†
How does it work? Supportive but not conclusive research shows that consumption of EPA and DHA omega-3 fatty acids may reduce the risk of coronary heart disease.(See nutrition information for total fat, saturated fat, and cholesterol content). Omega-3 fatty acids also help support the structural integrity for cells by being incorporated into cell membranes.†
Made with Reducol™ (a proprietary mix of plant-based compounds), CholestOff® offers another option if you’re considering heart health supplements.† The Reducol™ compounds (called sterols and stanols) are structurally similar to cholesterol.
What are the benefits? CholestOff® helps lower dietary cholesterol with plant sterols and stanols.*
Who should take it? If you want to lower your LDL (“bad”) cholesterol, this heart healthy supplement is a good option.†
How does it work? Plant sterols and stanols help block the absorption of dietary cholesterol in the small intestine, inhibiting absorption of dietary cholesterol and reducing total cholesterol and LDL cholesterol. As part of the Therapeutic Lifestyle Change (TLC) Guideline recommendations from the National Institute of Health, those with elevated cholesterol levels should consume two grams of plant sterols and stanols per day. Many Americans consume as little as 200 mg of plant sterols and stanols a day. Nature Made CholestOff® supplies 900 mg of plant sterols and stanols per serving for a daily intake of 1800 mg to help supplement your diet to meet TLC recommendations.
*Products containing at least 400 mg per serving of plant sterols and stanols, eaten twice a day with meals for a daily intake of at least 800 mg as part of a diet low in saturated fat and cholesterol, may reduce the risk of heart disease. One serving of Nature Made CholestOff® supplies 900 mg of plant sterols and stanols for a daily intake of 1800 mg.
You might be surprised to learn that potassium is an important mineral to support heart health.†
What are the benefits? Potassium helps support nerve, muscle, and heart function.†
Who should take it? Your best source of potassium lies in eating fruits and vegetables such as bananas, potatoes, grapefruit, tomatoes, prunes, and spinach. However, if you don’t eat a balanced diet or if you take medications or have certain health issues, talk with your preferred health care provider about your individual potassium needs.
How does it work? According to the National Institutes of Health, “your body needs potassium for almost everything it does, including proper kidney and heart function, muscle contraction, and nerve transmission.”2
Flaxseed Oil & Krill Oil
Finally, consider these heart supplements—flaxseed oil and krill oil. While flaxseed comes from plants and krill oil comes from small shrimp-like crustaceans called krill, they both share similar benefits.
What are the benefits? Flaxseed oil includes the omega-3 alpha linolenic acid (ALA) and krill oil is a source of omega-3 EPA and DHA. Plus, krill oil contains astaxanthin, which is known to have antioxidant activity.† Large population-based studies suggest that consuming both plant and marine sources of omega-3 fatty acids help support a healthy heart.†
Who should take it? If you’re looking for a plant-based source of omega-3, but you don’t eat flaxseed (or tofu or walnuts), then you might consider a flaxseed oil supplement. If you don’t regularly eat krill but want to reap the heart-healthy benefits of their oils, consider a krill oil supplement.†
How do they work? Both flaxseed oil and krill oil support heart health, thanks to the omega-3s they contain.†
You’re smart to think about the ways you can support your heart—including taking heart healthy supplements like CoQ10, Fish Oil, and CholestOff®. As always, it’s best to eat a balanced, healthy diet to get the important nutrients you need. But if you’re not sure whether you’re getting enough of certain nutrients, talk with your health care provider about taking a heart health supplement to fill the gap. Don’t forget to ask your doctor if a supplement will interfere with any medications you might be taking.†
Continue to check back on the Nature Made blog for the latest science-backed articles to help you take ownership of your health.
This information is only for educational purposes and is not medical advice or intended as a recommendation of any specific products. Consult your health care provider for more information.
† These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. These products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.
References 1. American Heart Association. “Vitamin Supplements: Hype or Help for Healthy Eating.” 2014. Accessed on: February 1, 2021. https://www.heart.org/en/healthy-living/healthy-eating/eat-smart/nutrition-basics/vitamin-supplements-hype-or-help-for-healthy-eating
2. National Institutes of Health. “Potassium: Fact Sheet for Consumers.” 2019. Accessed on: February 8, 2021. https://ods.od.nih.gov/factsheets/Potassium-Consumer/
Lisa Beach is a seasoned journalist whose work has been published in The New York Times, Good Housekeeping, Eating Well, Parents, AARP’s Disrupt Aging, Optimum Wellness, and dozens more. She also writes for a variety of health/wellness-focused brands. Check out her writer’s website at www.LisaBeachWrites.com.
As a member of the Medical and Scientific Communications team, Sandra educates healthcare professionals and consumers on nutrition, supplements, and related health concerns. Prior to joining Pharmavite, Sandra worked as a clinical dietitian at University of Chicago Medicine in the inpatient and outpatient settings. Sandra received her Bachelor of Science degree in Nutritional Science, with minors in Spanish and Chemistry from the University of Arizona in Tucson, AZ. She earned her Master of Science degree in Clinical Nutrition from RUSH University in Chicago, IL. As part of her Master’s program, Sandra performed research on physical activity participation and correlates in urban Hispanic women.
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