Metabolic cardiology: an integrative strategy in the treatment of congestive heart failure

Altern Ther Health Med. May-Jun 2009;15(3):44-52.


Congestive heart failure (CHF) and dilated cardiomyopathy are life-threatening conditions in which the heart muscle is so weak that effective pulsatile action is compromised. Pulmonary vascular congestion and swelling in the lower extremities as well as in the liver and lining of the gastrointestinal tract frequently cause overwhelming symptoms and disability. Millions of Americans suffer from CHF, and more than 500,000 cases are diagnosed annually. Cardiovascular diseases such as hypertension with left ventricular hypertrophy, valvular heart disease, coronary artery disease, myocarditis, and various cardiomyopathies can lead to the progressive onset of CHF. The purpose of this communication article is to introduce metabolic cardiology as a vital therapeutic strategy utilizing nutritional biochemical interventions that preserve and promote adenosine triphosphate (ATP) production. Treatment options that incorporate metabolic interventions targeted to preserve energy substrates (D-ribose) or accelerate ATP turnover (L-carnitine and coenzyme Q10) are indicated for at-risk populations or patients at any stage of CHF. The integration of these metabolic supports provides the missing link in CHF treatment that has been eluding physicians for decades.

MeSH terms

  • Adenine Nucleotides / metabolism
  • Cardiology / methods
  • Cardiomyopathy, Dilated / drug therapy*
  • Cardiomyopathy, Dilated / metabolism
  • Carnitine / metabolism
  • Carnitine / therapeutic use*
  • Energy Metabolism
  • Heart Failure / drug therapy*
  • Heart Failure / metabolism
  • Humans
  • Ribose / metabolism
  • Ribose / therapeutic use*
  • Ubiquinone / analogs & derivatives*
  • Ubiquinone / metabolism
  • Ubiquinone / therapeutic use
  • Vitamin B Complex / metabolism
  • Vitamin B Complex / therapeutic use*


  • Adenine Nucleotides
  • Vitamin B Complex
  • Ubiquinone
  • Ribose
  • coenzyme Q10
  • Carnitine