It’s not really often talked about. Yet, it’s something that could quite literally save your life down the road.
Here’s something you probably have never had your doctor measure:
The thickness of your blood.
Unless you’ve been put on a blood-thinning medication, chances are you’ve never thought about it.
But here’s the thing …
Having thick blood is just as big of a risk factor for heart attack and stroke as having high-cholesterol and being overweight.
And one of the biggest causes of having thick blood is high levels of fibrinogen.
It’s a protein that helps your blood coagulate. This is great when you’ve been cut or wounded, and need the blood loss to stop as quickly as possible.
The problem starts when your body makes too much, causing your blood to be too thick.
When your blood is too thick, it moves slower through your body. It takes longer to get vital nutrients and oxygen to your cells and vital organs, like your heart and brain.
Finally, the risk for heart attack and stroke is much greater. That’s because if any of your blood vessels are partially blocked by plaque, thicker blood could spontaneously clot as it passes through, completely stopping the flow of blood.
In one study, published in The Journal of the American Medical Association, researchers looked at data from more than 150,000 people.
Not surprisingly, they found a link between high levels of fibrinogen and increased risk of heart attack, stroke, and overall mortality. 
Another study in the Journal of Thrombosis and Haemostasis, had similar findings.
Researchers found that subjects who experienced an ischemic stroke had higher levels of fibrinogen than their healthy counterparts. 
So what can you do to make sure fibrinogen stays at healthy levels in your body?
For starters, you’ve got to keep inflammation in check. In many cases, chronic inflammation in the body leads to elevated fibrinogen levels.
This is probably due to the fact that inflammation is an immune system response – your body is trying to protect itself.
Unfortunately, being overweight, having diabetes, or even just leading a sedentary lifestyle can trigger chronic inflammation.
That said, make sure to eat a healthy, balanced diet and stay active.
If you think you might have thick blood, you can ask your doctor to do a blood test that checks C-reactive protein (a measure of inflammation in the body), along with your fibrinogen levels.
In the meantime, you can use these all-natural supplements to keep “thick” blood in check
(Note: Make sure to talk with your doctor before taking any of the supplements below, especially if you’re already on blood-thinning medications of any kind).
Omega 3 Fats: These healthy fats help reduce inflammation and have a mild effect on your blood’s viscosity (how “thick” it is). You can take it in capsule form or get it naturally from fish like salmon, eating whole eggs, and grass-fed beef.
Gingko Biloba: Not only will it help thin the blood, but it will keep you better focused and alert. It’s been shown to help increase blood flow to the brain.
Nattokinase: This is perhaps nature’s most potent blood thinner. It’s made from a popular Japanese food called natto – boiled soy beans that are later fermented. You can get the anticoagulant effects by eating natto on a regular basis, though I hear it has a very potent smell, and will most likely be an “acquired” taste. Fortunately, you can also get nattokinase in supplement form.
So there you have it. Keep your ticker happy, by making sure your blood isn’t too thick.
It’ll also keep the rest of your body happy!
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 Danesh J, et. al. Plasma fibrinogen level and the risk of major cardiovascular diseases and nonvascular mortality: an individual participant meta-analysis. JAMA. 2005 Oct 12;294(14):1799-809.
 van den Herik EG,et. al. γ’/total fibrinogen ratio is associated with short-term outcome in ischaemic stroke. Thromb Haemost. 2011 Mar;105(3):430-4. doi: 10.1160/TH10-09-0569. Epub 2010 Dec 6.