This test is used to assess risk of cardiovascular and peripheral vascular disease.
C-reactive protein (CRP) is a protein found in the blood, the levels of which rise in response to inflammation (an acute-phase protein).
A level above 2.4 mg/l has been associated with a doubled risk of a coronary event compared to levels below 1 mg/l.
In January of 2003, the Centers for Disease Control and the American Heart Association presented guidelines for the use of inflammatory markers in cardiovascular disease and recommended for the first time the use of high-sensitivity C-reactive protein (hs-CRP) as a risk factor particularly among those deemed at intermediate risk by traditional screening tools such as the Framingham Risk Score.
Clinical studies have shown that Vitamin E, Fish Oil, Flaxseed, exercise and low fat diet could lower C-reactive protein level and reduce the risk of heart attacks.
1) Vitamin E and Coenzyme Q10 were found to lower CRP by an average of 30% in research with baboons fed a high fat and high cholesterol diet.
2) Vitamin C (1000 mg daily) in human research reduced CRP levels by 25%.
3) Krill oil (300 mg daily) taken for two weeks in human research reduced CRP by 30%. Krill are marine crustaceans (similar to tiny shrimp) whose oil is a rich source of omega-3 fatty acids, eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA), vitamins A and E, and the antioxidant astaxanthin.
4) Eating plenty of vegetables and fruits daily can lower CRP levels by an average of 30%.
5) Regular, small amounts of dark chocolate can reduce CRP levels by an average of 20%.
C-reactive protein (CRP) has been discovered to be an important marker in cardiovascular disease.