Blood clots are a huge danger because they can cause strokes.
So, many men take blood thinners such as warfarin.
But these blood thinners cause other problems.
They increase hardening of the arteries, cardiovascular diseases, and can cause an early death themselves.
This study from Harvard shows us how.
Warfarin induces widespread vascular calcification in rats.
In fact, you might think that vitamin D would help, but that was not the case.
Vitamin D combined with warfarin increased calcification dramatically.
It is not just the arteries either.
Warfarin causes calcification of the heart valves and probably also in the penile tissues.
A small computed tomography study found that warfarin use was associated with both valvular and coronary calcification.
So now we’ve talked about warfarin and blood clots.
But there is another cause of blood clots that they just discovered.
Dietary supplements that include choline are just as dangerous.
Choline in the diet seems fine, but choline supplement seems to be very dangerous.
Choline is an important chemical and essential to our bodies.
However, we can make a lot of the choline we need in our liver.
But we generally can not make enough, so we must get some choline in our diets.
We can always get some choline if we are regularly consuming foods such as eggs and calves liver.
In fact, eggs are a great choline source, especially the egg yolk.
And it’s a good thing too because if you don’t eat enough choline, your liver is likely to become fatty and dysfunctional.
But don’t supplement choline and make sure your supplements do not have choline in them.
This is critical — it’s far more important than you may realize.
It’s important because it turns out that microbes in our gut can turn dietary components into the blood clotting compound, Trimethylamine N-oxide (TMAO).
Gut microbial production of TMAO from dietary nutrients like choline, lecithin, and L-carnitine is linked to the development of cardiovascular diseases.
Gut bacteria turn choline and lecithin and l-carnitine into TMAO.
TMAO then enters the body and:
plasma TMAO levels are associated with incident thrombotic event risk in subjects.
They discovered this in a study done with human subjects consuming probiotics.
The researchers found that supplements that include choline, lecithin, and l-carnitine can actually be very unhealthy.
Gut microbes turn the compounds into TMAO.
And TMAO causes the platelets to clot in the bloodstream, which can cause stroke and other problems.
Studies like this are another reason why I am a huge believer in real food rather than supplements.
And I think it’s important that if you’re on blood thinners, consider if your doctor will put you on some vitamin K2.
Vitamin K2 seems to help prevent damage from blood thinners.
And vitamin K2 does not counteract the effects of the blood thinners either.
Also make sure your supplements do not include choline, lecithin, or l-carnitine.
You need to be especially careful if you are at risk of blood clots and strokes.
Gut Microbe-Generated Trimethylamine N-Oxide From Dietary Choline Is Prothrombotic in Subjects