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Season 3, Episode 27: How To Prevent Cardiovascular Disease and Maintain A Healthy Heart with Dr. Jack Wolfson

By Jodi Cohen

Cardiovascular disease refers to many conditions that affect the heart and blood vessels. It’s the leading cause of death worldwide and can be influenced by many factors such as high blood pressure, high cholesterol, poor diet, etc. Maintaining a strong and healthy heart is crucial for your overall well-being.

Dr. Jack Wolfson is a board-certified cardiologist who specializes in nutrition, lifestyle changes, and natural supplements to prevent, treat, and even reverse heart disease. His “Eat Well, Live Well, Think Well” method has helped thousands of people from all over the world! In this episode, Jodi is joined by Dr. Jack Wolfson to discuss his holistic approach to preventing cardiovascular disease.

Tune in to learn more about:

  • [02:26] – What you should know about mainstream cardiology
  • [03:38] – Cardiovascular disease in women
  • [07:50] – A message about risk factors in men
  • [10:53] – Eat well, live well, think well!
  • [15:49] – The benefits of natural light
  • [19:20] – Every symptom can be explained by mold

About Dr. Jack Wolfson

Jack Wolfson D.O., F.A.C.C., is a board-certified cardiologist who uses nutrition, lifestyle, and supplements to prevent and treat heart disease. He completed a 4-year medical degree, 3-year internal medicine residency and, 3-year cardiology fellowship. He served as the Chief Fellow of his cardiology program, managing all of the other cardiology trainees.

Dr. Wolfson then joined the largest cardiology group in the state of Arizona and spent 10 years as a hospital-based cardiologist performing angiograms, pacemakers, and other cardiac procedures. He was the Chairman of Medicine, Director of Cardiology and, Director of Cardiac Rehabilitation.

He was selected by his peers as one of the Arizona “Top Docs”” in 2011.

In 2012, Dr. Wolfson founded Natural Heart Doctor to offer patients the ultimate in holistic heart care. People worldwide consult with Dr. Wolfson, traveling to Arizona or virtually for natural heart care.

Dr. Wolfson has appeared on every major news station and major newspaper along with hundreds of appearances at live events, podcasts, and online interviews. He has taught medical doctors and practitioners from all over the world.

Dr. Wolfson was recognized as one of the Top 50 Holistic Medical Practitioners.

The Paleo Cardiologist, The Natural Way to Heart Health is the first book by Dr. Wolfson and is an Amazon best-seller. He is also a contributing author to The Textbook of Integrative Cardiology.

If you would like a copy of A Paleo Cardiologist visit freeheartbook.com.

If you’re enjoying the Essential Alchemy podcast, please leave Jodi a review on iTunes.


Jodi:  Hello, I’m Jodi Cohen, your host, and I’m so excited to be joined by one of my favorite, most brilliant friends, Dr. Jack Wolfson is a board-certified cardiologist who uses nutrition, lifestyle, and supplements to prevent and treat heart disease. He completed a four-year medical degree, three-year internal medical residency, three-year cardiology fellowship and serves as a chief fellow of his cardiology program managing all other cardiology trainees.

Dr. Wolfson then joined the largest cardiology group in the state of Arizona and spent 10 years as a hospital based cardiologist performing enneagrams, pacemakers, and other cardiac procedures. He was selected by his peers as one of Arizona’s top docs in 2011, and he has appeared in every major news station, a major newspaper, along with hundreds of appearances at live events, podcasts, and online interviews. 

He is the paleo cardiologist and has a natural way to heart health. It’s his first book, and he is an Amazon bestseller, and he’s also a contributing author to the textbook of integrated cardiology.

Jack: Thank you so much, Jodi. It’s a pleasure to be on. And ever since I met you at the Nutritional Therapy Association, I just felt such a great resonance with you and I love the work that you’re doing. And of course, love your vibrant blue oils. We sell a ton of them. We recommend a ton of them and it’s helping so many people in a way that certainly standard cardiology is not.

Jodi:  I love that you’re taking a natural approach to cardiology. It’s not just once you have the heart attack, you react, you’re being really proactive. 

Can you talk a little bit about what is mainstream cardiovascular disease?

Jack:  Mainstream cardiology, they just take the pharmaceutical model first, they think of pharma first, they think of surgery first, when pharma and surgery should be thought of as last. And there is a much better way to heart health and what mainstream is doing and it’s not that they’re not intelligent people, they’re very intelligent people, but they’re just trained one way. They’re trained in the pharmaceuticals. That’s the way that I was trained and we’re not trained in causation. So we have to think about the cause of why people have high blood pressure, coronary disease, why they had a stroke or cardiomyopathy. 

There are so many reasons why, and if we can address the why, that’s how we really make an impact on people. The pharmaceuticals, they don’t work. The surgical procedures don’t work. There’s a time and a place for emergency medicine, of course, but for prevention, they have nothing.

Jodi:  Before we kind of get into some of the root causes, you said something interesting before we started. I was kind of asking that men are more likely to have heart attacks than women. And you said something about after menopause. Can you talk a little bit about what the risk factors are for men and women and what early symptoms might be?

Jack:  The risk factors for anybody are quite simply violations of eat well, live well, think well. When we deviate from that methodology of eating the right foods and we now eat the wrong foods or we live the right lifestyle or now don’t live the right lifestyle, even emotions such as anger, anxiety, stress, depression, social isolation, all those are are linked to increased risk with cardiovascular disease.

And it hits it hits women a little bit later. So there’s something protective about being a menstruating woman that keeps them on the healthier side, although more and more of them are suffering. In fact, there’s two conditions that are seen. And menstruating women are younger women. One is called SCADs, Spontaneous Coronary Artery Dissection. Number one cause of heart attacks in younger women. 

Number two is stress-induced cardiomyopathy, otherwise known as broken heart syndrome. It’s a broken heart syndrome. A woman who’s under a lot of stress and then suffers a massive heart attack and it could be deadly very commonly. It’s all about how do we eat well, live well, think well, and then we test, don’t guess, evidence-based supplements, biohacking strategies, but a lot of times women get the short end of the stick. When they’re being interviewed, their complaints may be different. So a male classically has chest pain or shortness of breath and they’re having a heart attack. A woman may come in and have those same symptoms, but she may also say I just don’t feel right or I’ve been more tired lately, and certainly those things can be a lot of other things more commonly with cardiac, but we still have to pay attention to make sure that it’s not something threatening, like an acute cardiac event.

Jodi:  When you were talking about broken heart, stress-related heart conditions, does that have to do with the vagus nerve that people are kind of stuck in sympathetic, and so the heart is overworking?

Jack:  Most definitely. I think what happens in that scenario, there’s two possibilities, and it may be a combination of the above.

One is that you have a spasm of one of your coronary arteries, so that artery, that tube or hose that’s supplying a part of the heart all of a sudden clamps down. And that can definitely be compounded by sympathetic overdrive, high sympathetic tone, low parasympathetic tone, that autonomic imbalance. It could also be because of a clot that happens in that particular area. So we get sudden blood clots in that particular part of the heart. And yes, that kind of clot or what would be what’s known as a hypercoagulable state can be stress induced

When our bodies are in the fight or flight mode, we think we’re about to get injured. So in preparation for injury, we are producing all of these different immunologic and then also coagulation factors, right? If we think if our body knows we’re about to bleed, it’s going to ramp up all those things that are going to help us from bleeding to death 

And that’s not beneficial in a 21st century human. And I think it definitely impacts the autonomic imbalance. And I think to that point your specialty really comes in, I believe in so many different ways is achieving that autonomic balance, which would be preventing a first event and of course, preventing subsequent events.

Jodi: Before we get into eat well, live well, think well, I’d love to unpack for the listeners who might be worried about their husband or significant other or their father, what are some of the early symptoms for men? A lot of men snore. Is that a concern? What are things that we can look out for so that we can intervene early?

Jack:  Snoring in men and women is a sign of a potential obstructive sleep apnea. People who snore, they don’t live as long. They don’t live as well.

And of course, same thing with sleep apnea. So those people should be looked at very carefully and tested. There’s outpatient tests for sleep apnea. We’ve got a device that we sell called the WatchPat. And we send it to someone’s home. They put it on their wrist, they put it on their finger and they put a lead on their chest. And then you send the kit in to the company. And we get the results and go over there. I think in general, men more commonly than the reverse, men just don’t listen to their wives regarding health. They don’t. I’m not exactly sure why. And for any men who’s listening, let me just say, it sucks that they’re always right, but they, they are. 

The sooner we admit that, the longer and better we’re going to live in many different ways, literally and figuratively. You know, we really want to make sure that we are listening to our spouses, one way or the other. But if I can be a sounding board, or if I can be like a third party or a second opinion, we’re like, you’re the woman, you’re telling your husband to do all these things. And he’s like, yeah, whatever. You never got a medical degree. Check out my stuff on my website or my social media or get a copy of my book. And give it to your spouse and say, I would phrase it this way, I would really appreciate it if you read this article, really appreciate it if you read this book, I really care about you and I want you to live a long time. And I’m worried. I want you to take a look at this here. I know I’ve been telling you to eat organic food and to meditate and take these various supplements and get better sleep and lose some weight. I’ve been telling you to do that, but maybe if you heard it from a cardiologist, you’d think differently.

Jodi:  Or if you’re witnessing snoring or, what is it when their heart races?

Jack:  People who complain of palpitations, it’s very common. This is very common that women are struggling from, the classic example, 25-year-old woman, heart races, flips, pounds, flutters. 

She’s got a lot of symptoms, but that could be symptoms in a 70-year-old man as well. Any medical problem that you have, I definitely suggest seeking out a second opinion of a holistic natural provider. If you’ve got cancer, speak with a natural cancer doctor. If you’ve got cardiovascular concerns, then speak with a natural cardiologist.

Jodi: And if you don’t have concerns and you just want to prevent concerns, let’s start to unpack the eat well, live well, think well. Everyone should get your book, say the name and where they can find it. 

Jack: It’s called A Paleo Cardiologist, The Natural Way To Heart Health. You can get it at FreeHeartBook.com. Get it there, get a copy for free. All you do is pay a few bucks for shipping. When it comes to eat well, live well, think well, eating well is about eating the right foods, and avoiding the wrong foods, a lot of debate in the food story. So let me just say this, Jodi, and I know you agree that no matter what diet you follow, just make sure it’s organic. Just get the chemicals out of your food. 

And again, that’s what I love about your oils. The purity of what that is. And that’s why we’re big fans for multiple different reasons. And we’ll talk about that in a little bit. Eating the right foods, just getting the chemicals out of your food is huge. I’m a big seafood fan, a big fan of free-range grass-fed meats, including the organs, liver, and heart, and kidney.

Those are the most nutrient dense foods in the world. People who eat the most amount of seafood have the highest levels of Omega-3, and they live the longest, live the best. And then also, I’m gluten-free as well. I don’t find a purpose for eating gluten found in wheat, barley, and rye. I don’t need it. I drink organic coffee and I drink high-quality water. And that’s how we roll with the food story. But everyone loves to debate the food story. But what about the live well part of the story and the think well, they’re just as important.

Jodi:  Let’s unpack that a little bit. How do you recommend what are your, you know, obviously move and sleep? What do you tell people to do to live?

Jack:  Sleep is the most important, I think of all. No matter what version of the story you believe in – the biblical version or the evolutionary version or a combination thereof, like first there was darkness, which means that life evolved under the pretense of first there was darkness and then there was light and that circadian cycle or circadian rhythm of dark and light is the most important thing that we can do for our health. So we need to really look at that as well. The light aspect of even that biblical story about light. And we think about, it was dark and then there was the sun and maybe that’s the most literal thing, but also the light, the light is also the spark of life

When a sperm and an egg meets in the womb, there is actually a light that is emitted from that union. And that is, again, that spark of light that occurs at that particular moment. You mentioned the movement. The movement’s an important part and certainly something that I’m very passionate about is avoiding the environmental chemicals and pollutants as much as possible, and good detox strategies. I think that’s critical.

Make sure you’re under the care of a chiropractor and also a dentist, and that’s the live well and then the think well component is just as we said where people are struggling with stress, anxiety, and depression, and worry, and fear, especially over the last few years where they were just selling us fear, fear, fear, fear, fear.

Jodi: Look at all the school shootings. Every time you turn on the TV, it’s something new.

Jack:  It is, well, and exacerbated by media since the dawn of media, really, and really even control of populace, back for the last few thousands of years regarding the people in control and in charge using fear to subjugate the population. And it’s certainly the last three years where it’s just exploded. And we’ve seen an explosion of cardiovascular disease. So getting people to find their sense of spirituality, finding their sense of purpose, finding their sense of self-acceptance and self-worth and gratitude and finding a sense of community

And Jodi, you know, you’ve lost a lot of friends over the years because your positions. I’ve lost a lot of friends over the years. A lot of my MD and DO buddies I’ve lost over the years, but I’ve gained so many new friends. I have a new community. That’s a holistic health and wellness community. I’m glad you and I are part of that together. Those are the three main categories and they’re all super important and the cardiologists just miss it. They just miss it because they were never trained in it. And it’s a problem with the medical training

This goes back to the control by Flexman reports, the Rockefellers, JP Morgan’s back in the early 1900s, where they just brought in the pharmaceutical model of health care, and it’s not health care. It’s sick care.

Jodi: I was really struck when you were talking about light. I was kind of thinking about like, plants are really receptors for light, right? It’s the sunlight that allows them to grow. I was actually just in my garden before we got on and the weeds are going crazy because it’s so sunny now. It’s kind of like the plants metabolize the sunlight. And I think that that’s part of the benefit of consuming for plants, consuming animals that eat the plants, and even the oils, is it’s kind of liquid light.

Jack:  Light is so impressed about what it is and I think the flip side of that too is how detrimental artificial light is, so people who are struggling with health concerns because they’re just addicted to technology, especially at night. I mean, I know you’re looking at tech. I’m looking at tech, but we’re recording this in the morning, when it gets dark out, our family does not use any tech. We try and go to sleep as soon after sundown as possible to minimize our exposure to artificial light. A leaf or a plant is essentially a solar panel, right? It was the first solar panel built to collect light. And as you said, the plants use the energy from the light and the water that comes up through its roots. And it can, along with carbon dioxide, it turns it into food, which is the plant itself. 

And the oxygen gets released, and of course we breathe in the oxygen. So we are actually the mirror image of a plant. The plant does one thing and then we do the exact opposite to utilize all that would work in total congruence with that model. And what is the purpose of our skin? Our skin is not just to hold together a bag of bones. As much as I love the vibrant blue oils, the skin is not just a vehicle of delivery for our essential oils. The skin is a solar panel built to collect light. And when we do so, magical things happen. We crank up our levels of melatonin, we increase levels of nitric oxide, which does so many things.

Including preventing that coronary vasospasm that people suffer from. And then also, as we get sunshine, the sun turns cholesterol in the skin into vitamin D. Therefore, cholesterol goes down, vitamin D goes up. Elevated cholesterol is a sunshine deficiency syndrome.

Jodi:  I’ve never heard anyone articulate that way. I loved that.

Jack:  Well, thank you, Jodi. I’m glad to be able to entertain you and teach something to the audience. And what’s great about all this stuff is that this is common sense type of thing. And we’ve just lost the common sense method out methodologies a hundred years ago. It’s really a shame, but, uh, it’s an exciting time. It’s an exciting time. The truth is coming to you very soon.

Jodi:  When it’s so inspiring to like, I mean, I’m 54 and I’m one of almost everyone I know when they turn 50, they’re on all these drugs and what you’re basically saying is all we need to do is go out in the sunshine and eat organic nutrient-dense whole food.

Jack:  That’s really a large part of what it is but there’s a lot of different components of the eat well, live well, think well. My presentation recently at the conference was about mold, mycotoxins, and cardiovascular disease. Mold is very, very sinister, and everybody needs to know if they’re living in mold, if they are trying to mitigate that, trying to get out of it, trying to remediate, and then coming up with good detox strategies to deal with that. And I know that you guys have a lot of fantastic products.

Jodi:  We do support drainage. Mold is so alarming because some people half the time don’t even realize that they’re living in mold and half the time. They don’t equate the symptoms that they’re having with mold. It can affect everything. It can affect mood. It can affect mental function. Obviously respiratory, heart.

Jack: It can affect every symptom can be explained away by mold. A lot of times, just the women have the symptoms and the man says he feels fine. So the woman, she’s got brain fog, she’s got skin issues, she’s got gastrointestinal issues, nobody could figure it out. And then somebody mentions mold and the husband’s like, Oh, but I feel fine. And when we want the husband’s on three meds for blood pressures on high cholesterol meds, he’s got erectile dysfunction and he uses Viagra and he’s got low T and he’s looking for testosterone

The man always has something, although he refuses to equate the fact that mold could be causing a lot of these symptoms, but it’s critically important to spread the truth about this and raise awareness about this for people, and that way they can start getting help with it. But again, that whole concept equilibrium, then we do the most advanced testing in the world, which is much more in depth than what the medical doctors are doing by far and away and then the evidence based supplements and those biohacking strategies. 

And I consider the essential oils as far as biohacking strategies. To give you shameless plugs here. It really is fantastic. What I love about your stuff is that actually has a label on as far as like, what it’s for, because if people, me personally, there’s so much on my brain and I’m like, okay, well, what are the oils that I would use for parasympathetic? Oh, I would use this combination of this, this, and this. I love that you’ve done it already for us.

This is the organic, wild-crafted blend that you’re going to use for heart or lymphatics or parasympathetic or circulation or fascia and makes it simple for guys like me, and for patients in general, I think it’s really great, but I think it’s a penultimate biohacking strategy that can really help people along the way.

Jodi: We intentionally put the positive outcome, when my kids were little, I remember we’re at the pool and you’re like, don’t run. And someone’s like, don’t say that because all they hear is run, say walk. Just give them the positive outcome that they’re looking for. So I’m sure there are going to be a lot of listeners who either want to see you themselves or want to send their husband to see you. How can people work with you? And what does that look like in terms of what tests do you run?

Jack:  Thank you for that advice about the children, because I always tell my little girls not to run. So I will say going forward, Hey, make sure you walk by the pool. 

There’s so many different tests to run intracellular vitamins, minerals, toxic metals, pesticides, phthalates, parabens, PVCS, and mold, mycotoxins, and these intracellular vitamins and minerals and proteins and fats and markers of inflammation. There’s so many exciting things that we could do that mainstream is not doing and that’s what we do over at Natural Heart Doctor. So for anyone interested, it’s on our website, NaturalHeartDoctor.com. You can follow us on social media. We’re all over TikTok and Instagram. I think that a lot of social media can be stressful. We want to make sure we want to limit it during the day. We don’t want to do it at night. I think there’s some good, valuable information to be found on there, but try and stick to it.

I would suggest there’s better forms of entertainment. Like FreeHeartBook.com.

Jodi:  I still read old school. You can see I’m a book girl, but thank you so much for your time. Was there anything that we didn’t touch on that you’d like to add?

Jack: No, I appreciate you and your time. And I am a big fan of the old-school books. Thank you for your time. Thank you for your products. Thank you for your support. And we just love what you’re doing, Jodi. So keep up the good work.

Jodi:  Mutual love fest. I love everything you’re doing too. Thank you.

About The Author

Jodi Cohen

Jodi Sternoff Cohen is the founder of Vibrant Blue Oils. An author, speaker, nutritional therapist, and a leading international authority on essential oils, Jodi has helped over 50,000 individuals support their health with essential oils.