By Jim English
High blood pressure (hypertension) is one of the most common forms of cardiovascular disease, afflicting an estimated 25 percent of North Americans. Hypertension is associated with atherosclerosis, hypertensive renal failure, stroke, congestive heart failure, and myocardial infarction. Although hypertension has been extensively studied, over ninety percent of all cases are referred to as “essential hypertension,” meaning the cause of the elevated blood pressure is unknown.
For years, hypertension was thought to represent a single disease, but by the early 1980s it became apparent that patients with high blood pressure could be grouped by various metabolic characteristics. One group of patients, in particular, was known to have low blood calcium levels but increased levels of parathyroid hormone (PTH) – the hormone responsible for maintaining blood calcium.
Calcium is closely involved in smooth muscle contraction. Excessive contraction of arterial smooth muscles can cause an elevation in blood pressure. It is known that cells of hypertensive animals and patients often contain higher levels of calcium than what is considered normal. High dietary calcium has been shown in some studies to reduce high blood pressure – especially in individuals in whom blood pressure is affected by salt.
Parathyroid Hypertensive Factor
A number of recent studies demonstrated that certain substances in the blood could play an important role in the onset of hypertension. One such substance – parathyroid hypertensive factor, or PHF – was isolated in serum by a team of Canadian researchers. They discovered that when the parathyroid glands were removed from hypertensive animals, blood pressure decreased and PHF levels could no longer be detected in the blood. Conversely, when the parathyroid glands from a hypertensive animal were transplanted into a healthy animal, blood pressure in the healthy animal shot up, and PHF would appear in the blood.
PHF has since been measured in a number of human hypertensive patients – namely, those with lower calcium and higher PTH levels. This group of patients also represents the salt-sensitive patients – and comprises about 40% of all people with high blood pressure.
Lowering PHF Naturally
Canadian researchers realized that any substance that could lower PHF levels would help to control hypertension and other diseases related to elevated intracellular calcium levels. After screening numerous potential agents, the Canadians focused on two that possessed well-documented anti-tumor effects – shark cartilage and the Chinese herb, Cordyceps sinensis.
Shark cartilage has been shown through extensive research to contain a substance that inhibits tumor growth. Tests conducted by the researchers found that a special water-soluble extract of shark cartilage was effective in blocking PHF and normalizing cellular calcium levels. Continuing research revealed that cordyceps sinensis was also effective at blocking the hypertensive effects of PHF.
On the basis of their findings, the Canadian team evaluated the anti-hypertensive effects of Pressure-FX™, a proprietary formula that combines 180 mg of a highly purified, water-soluble shark cartilage extract with 20 mg of cordyceps sinensis extract. One hundred and two patients with mild to moderate arterial hypertension were treated for 3 to 6 months with Pressure-FX. In addition to the proprietary formula, all patients received calcium, magnesium and potassium supplements, along with vitamin C and a multivitamin-mineral supplement.
Significantly, all patients were able to reduce their dosage of classical anti-hypertensive drugs to half of their previous dosage. And within 3 to 4 weeks, 63 of the 84 patients (75 percent) who were taking anti-hypertensive drugs at the start of the test were able to completely eliminate their drugs and be maintained using only the proprietary formula.
At the conclusion of the study, eighty-nine patients (88 percent) reported a complete lack of hypertension for the last eight weeks of the study. Significantly, the patients reported no side effects from the formula.
Safety of Pressure-FX
Toxicology tests conducted by an independent laboratory at the University of Alberta found that dosages at 500 times the human dose produced no side effects.
Control of blood pressure is known to promote good cardiovascular health and reduce the risk of stroke, heart problems and kidney damage. Research has shown that the proprietary formula of water-soluble shark cartilage extract and cordyceps sinensis extract contained in Pressure-FX acts to reduce the effects of PHF and promote healthy blood pressure levels.