Nattokinase is an enzyme derived from natto, a traditional Japanese soybean dish that is made by boiling or steaming soybeans and then fermenting them. This process yields a dish that Westerners don’t find particularly appealing; however, taste aside, natto is probably one of the world’s healthiest foods and certainly deserves a place within any good cardiovascular nutrition program due to its ability to improve blood circulation in the body.
Nattokinase helps address one of the most overlooked problems in the development of coronary artery disease: Hyperviscosity, which refers to thick and sticky blood that moves slowly through the circulatory system. Hyperviscosity feeds the inflammatory process that damages arteries and sluggish blood flow also makes it difficult to prevent blood clots from forming.
Enter nattokinase. It reinforces the actions of plasmin, which is your body’s own enzyme that breaks down the body’s clotting agent called fibrin, thereby preventing abnormal thickening of the blood in order to improve blood circulation.
Because of its clot-busting and blood-thinning properties, nattokinase is used to treat coronary artery disease and prevent heart attack and stroke. I also recommend it to any of my patients with high blood pressure levels. I have seen it result in such significant improvements in blood pressure levels that patients are usually able to cut down, and sometimes even cut out, their blood pressure medication. Typical results are reductions of 10–20 systolic points and 5–10 diastolic points.
Recommended Dose of Nattokinase to Improve Blood Circulation: Start at 50 mg of nattokinase a day and increase the daily dosage to 100 mg after a week.
Caution: You should not combine nattokinase with Coumadin, a blood thinning drug, because it may result in you having too little fibrin to form any clots at all, putting you at risk for bleeding events.