Reduce Your Levels Naturally
Although prevention is always preferable to cure, once elevated homocysteine has been diagnosed, the next step is a simple examination of your diet. A healthy, balanced diet containing at least five servings of fruits and vegetables a day will help to lower your homocysteine level and keep it within the ideal range.
Folic acid and vitamins B-6 and B-12 have been shown to have the greatest effect at breaking down harmful homocysteine from within the body.
Foods rich in folic acid, vitamins B6 and B12 include:
Green leafy vegetables such as spinach, savoy cabbage, curly kale, Brussels sprouts, broccoli and asparagus.
Citrus fruits particularly oranges and grapefruits
Pulses such as black-eyed beans and chickpeas
Whole grain cereals
So does it work?
From mid-1998, the USA and Canada have been adding folic acid to basic foods including flour. The result: 31,000 less deaths due to strokes per year and 12,800 less due to heart attacks. Furthermore from data presented at the 4th Conference on Hyperhomocysteinemia, elevated homocysteine increases the risk of cardiovascular disease by over 10%.
Reduction of homocysteine levels has also been shown to have a positive effect on cognitive performance in the elderly. However, the earlier elevated homocysteine levels are detected, the better.
Many studies have also shown that vitamin supplementation may help to slow the development of cardiovascular disease, in particular the thickening and narrowing of artery walls. Your doctor should always be consulted before any vitamin treatment is started.