Nattokinase is a powerful enzyme that has fibrinolytic health benefits. That’s right. It is a clot-bluster!
Back in the 1980’s if you were suffering from a heart attack, the only option to open the blocked vessel was the clot-buster, streptokinase. Angioplasty and stents weren’t available. Streptokinase intravenous worked well. Sometimes too well, leading to severe bleeding and even stroke.
Streptokinase is an enzyme that breaks clots. Nattokinase does the same thing, just not to the extreme and is not given intravenous. You can learn more about what a kinase enzyme is here.
Can you harness the clot-busting effects of nattokinase without the risk? I believe so. In fact, I have yet to see a bleed with nattokinase, yet patients describe how they bruise a little easier or bleed longer after a cut.
Natto, a fermented soybean product, has been consumed as a traditional food in Japan for thousands of years. Could this food be the secret to the longevity of the Japanese? On average, people in Japan live 4.5 years longer than people in the U.S.!
Nattokinase (NK), a potent blood-clot dissolving protein used for the treatment of cardiovascular diseases, is produced by the bacterium Bacillus subtilis during the fermentation of soybeans to produce Natto. NK has been extensively studied in Japan, Korea, and China. Recently, the fibrinolytic (anti-clotting) capacity of NK has been recognized by Western medicine.
How does nattokinase thin the blood?
Mechanism of Clot-busting Action
1) Degrades fibrin
2) Degrades PAI-1 (plasminogen activator inhibitor)
3) Increases TPA (tissue plasminogen activator)
4) Activates urokinase- a clot buster that activates plasmin
5) Inhibits platelet function
Here is a recent study about nattokinase and its effects on blood coagulation factors.
We know that streptokinase works IV. Here are four studies proving that nattokinase works when consumed orally:
I use nattokinase for patients with the following issues:
1) Atrial fibrillation- calculate your CHADSVASC.org score. If 2 or less, I think nattokinase is a great option. 3 and above, make sure you check with your holistic doctor.
2) Coronary artery disease
3) Elevated Lp(a)- Lp(a) is a lipid that leads to hypercoagulability (sticky blood). It interferes with the clot buster that nattokinase ACTIVATES. Read more about Lp(a) here.
4) Hx of stroke
5) Hx of blood clot and prevention of blood clots. An enzyme supplement similar to nattokinase was studied on people travelling on long airline flights. A dramatic difference was seen in the supplement group versus placebo. source
6) Dementia and dementia prevention- source
We created a combination product containing two proven clot busters. We call it Flow. The suggested dosage is 1-2 capsules 2x per day on an empty stomach. I call it a “nightstand” nutrient. Keep it on the nightstand and take it first thing in the morning and last thing in the evening, two times when your stomach should be fairly empty. Some people may seek to benefit from a midday dosage. Depending on your risk factors, I like the 3x per day dosing.
CYA moment: This article is for information purposes only. Check with your doctor to find out if nattokinase is right for you. Check with your doctor before stopping any prescription pharmaceutical.
Nattokinase is not recommended in anyone on prescription blood thinners. This warning also includes aspirin, unless working with a skilled holistic practitioner.
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