Nitric oxide is a gas that regulates the nervous, immune and cardiovascular systems. Most importantly, this signaling molecule made up of one nitrogen and one oxygen molecule, is important for vasodilation: where the arteries expand for increased blood flow. Nitric oxide is produced in the lining of the arterial walls, or endothelium. With the proper levels of nitric oxide, the endothelium remains healthy, supple and elastic. This enables proper blood flow throughout the arterial system.
With nitric oxide in the endothelium prompting vasodilation, your body also regulates blood pressure. People are just becoming more familiar with this molecular gas in the body and how important it truly is.
Commonly, nitric oxide is confused with nitrous oxide. But, the latter is what you get in the dentist office; laughing gas, to be precise!
EECP And Nitric Oxide
Enhanced External Counterpulation (EECP) is a circulatory therapy mostly known for cardiovascular disease. This makes sense because the circulatory system includes the arterial system, too. How blood flows and circulates through the body is the core of EECP therapy. The mechanics of EECP are actually very interesting. Nitric oxide is part of the mechanics of EECP, and here’s how:
- When you’re hooked up to the EECP machine with three blood pressure-like cuffs wrapped around calves, thighs and buttocks, the cuffs inflate and deflate rapidly in sequence to the rhythm of your heart. This is passive exercise and EECP is like a second heart pumping while yours is at rest. When EECP inflates the cuffs around your lower extremities, nitric oxide is produced within the endothelium.
- More nitric oxide means improved circulation with supple and elastic arteries that vasodilate. Remember, vasodilation means increase in blood flow and circulation. Imagine this: when your heart pumps, it forces blood to flow throughout the body’s organs and arteries. A healthy heart means perfect blood pressure. The blood can flow properly with the right velocity throughout the body. Nitric oxide is produced to aid in vasodilation and a healthy endothelium with low inflammation and improved blood pressure.
- Now imagine what happens with your body is hooked up to EECP therapy. When your heart is resting, EECP takes over like a second heart. For one full hour daily you have two hearts ‘pumping’ like passive exercise and also contributing to production of nitric oxide, improved circulation, less inflammation, and lower blood pressure.
- Studies show that EECP reduces hypertension. It’s a complementary benefit of the therapy. EECP is also known to be like a natural bypass. During the therapy, new collaterals form to bypass blockages. While most people have this ability to bypass blockages in the arterial system, EECP actually is clinically proven to bypass arterial blockages with formation of new collaterals.
Nitric Oxide and Sports Enhancement
In 1996, Sara Soulati began to study the effect of EECP on elite athletes. She worked with the U.S. Olympic Sprint Team to see how EECP would affect endurance, stamina, reduction in lactic acid, and quicker recovery from injury. She was able to prove in her non-scientific study that EECP can help athletes in a variety of ways via EECP methodology.
Nitric oxide, according to Extraordinary Health magazine, “In summary, for sport, in addition to delivering fuel and oxygen to muscles, NO improves work production, helps regulate blood sugar and helps to remove waste products such as lactic acid.
For athletes, companies like Garden of Life are creating entire categories of sports nutrition products. Nitric oxide is being included in pre-workout formulas. Whole foods like organic kale, spinach and beets put more nitrates into the body. These natural plant nitrates also produce nitric oxide which we now know fuels and oxygenates the arterial system and musculature.
Look into nitric oxide and how it helps so many aspects of your health. Then, come in for your complimentary program experience at Global Cardio Care and get on the EECP bed and learn more about how EECP reverses cardiovascular disease and prevents other diseases.