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Safe Alternatives to Avoid Blood Clotting

April 3, 2009 by  

Safe Alternatives to Avoid Blood Clotting

All seniors need to be aware of their blood clotting mechanism. If our blood clots too fast or too slow, we could have a medical emergency. It happens all the time.

When our blood sludges (thickens), we may not be able to get it thin fast enough to ward off a stroke or heart attack. It is better to err on the side of thin blood.

There are many natural blood thinners, but none of these have been known to cause overly thin blood. Each day I take fish oil, cod liver oil, Viobin, natto, garlic and gingko.

If you’re under the care of a doctor, they prescribe Heparin®, Warfarin® (Coumadin), streptokinase, and T-PA (tissue plasminogen activator.) And after most any heart procedure, Plavix® is the doctor’s drug favorite. They don’t tell us what Plavix® does to the skin. Coumadin increases the risk of bleeding under the skin and depletes the body of vitamin K which has an important natural blood clotting action.

Streptokinase has a very short-lived action and over time becomes less effective. Heparin® must be injected and it can lead to allergic reaction, high potassium blood levels, osteoporosis, low blood platelets and even hair loss. And a number of Heparin® batches were recalled last year. T-PA is only administered as an IV, is effective for a relatively short period and is very expensive.

Natural nattokinase (natto) is a favorite because it is packaged in very small capsules with no taste. It is a rich source of protein, vitamin B2 and vitamin K2. Mainly, it contains the enzyme natto. The enzyme natto has the ability to dissolve blood clots. This is known as fibrinolysis. The body produces an enzyme called plasmin which has fibrinolytic properties. But for a variety of reasons, its activity appears to diminish as we age. So the effect of natto is similar to plasmin, but research shows that it is four times more potent. It is a relatively safe clotbuster for most people. I love it because it has been used for at least a thousand years in Japan.

We need to be aware if we have an overactive clotting mechanism. It’s dangerous! It leads to a host of cardiovascular problems such as hardening of the arteries, heart attack, stroke, intermittent claudication (leg pain upon exerting), varicose veins and high blood pressure. It is also thought that an overactive clotting factor contributes to senility, infertility, impotence, hemorrhoids, eye conditions involving the retina and fibromyalgia.

The enzymatic activity of natto is not only fibrinolytic (dissolves blood clots), but also it is homeostatic. That is, not only does it break down existing clots, but it also works to prevent the formation of excessive amounts of fibrin and reestablish a healthy coagulation mechanism of the body.

Natto is a clotbuster but unlike pharmaceutical clotbusting agents, natto does not reduce the capacity of the body to form clots appropriately and quickly to stop bleeding. Pharmaceuticals thin blood to the point of hemorrhage—causing huge black bruised-looking places on the skin.

Coumadin depletes the body of vitamin K and therefore limits the capacity of blood to clot when it needs to.

Natto can be taken orally in capsule form that has a longer lasting action, costs less and has no negative side effects. In fact, it has positive side effects such as increased energy, new and better circulation, better vision, less joint and muscle pain and has been used to manage migraine headaches.

You can find natto at a natural supplement company.

Bob Livingston

is an ultra-conservative American and author of The Bob Livingston Letter™, founded in 1969. Bob has devoted much of his life to research and the quest for truth on a variety of subjects. Bob specializes in health issues such as nutritional supplements and alternatives to drugs, as well as issues of privacy (both personal and financial), asset protection and the preservation of freedom.

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  • Dave Neff

    A simple reading of a book by Nobel laureate, Dr. Louis J. Ignarro reveals so much more related to the ‘thinning of blood’ naturally! In fact, in his book, “NO More Heart Disease – How Nitric Oxide Can Prevent – Even Reverse – Heart Disease and Strokes,” he details the facts about reversing heart disease. Using a good quality liquid L-Arginine, L-Citrulline, Anti-oxidant, Vitamin D and other nutrients preparation such as “Cardio Cocktail” or “Nobel” or “Argenix” from ForMor International 1 does the job wonderfully well.

    • Andrew Mackenzie

      My wife got leg cramps in both legs after taking Natto, What can I do to help her.. she is 58 years and gets leg cramps and that is why I gave her natto.

      • Martha

        I had the same problem. I switched to Health Resources’ The Circulation Solution” and had not had leg cramps since.

  • Jim Hunt

    I use many of these supplements too. A year ago, following hip replacement surgery, I developed massive pulmonary embolisms. My doctor prescribed Coumadin (rat poison) but it did not thin my blood even on high doses. I was concerned that if it ever did kick in, I would have bleeding problems.

    My naturopath recommended the nattokinase and another product not mentioned here called lumbrokinase. The normal period for clot dissolution was six months. Mine were gone in 6 weeks, as shown on a ct scan, with the products mentioned here, without the side effets of Coumadin.

    I take most of the supplements listed by Bob for blood health maintenance. Good article!

    • George Zentner


      What is your age now and have you served in US Army ?
      Are you, by chance, a twin ?

      I think I may try to have my Dr. recommend this to get rid of the effects of Coumadin (Warfarin ).

      (former 97th Sig Bn)

  • Martha


    I’m a 75 year old woman who does forget things like what I was going to do when I go into a room, have senior moments, etc. I have taken Natto Clear from Vibrant Life 1-800-216-1379 because they advertised that it was good for varicose veins. I took it, but it gave me leg cramps. Therefore, I hesitate taking natto. Have you heard of others with this experience?

    • Erna

      Sometimes I get leg cramps while in bed. Many years ago a doctor gave this advise: put one or two magnets under the bedsheet below the legs, which I tried. Just little ordinary magnets and found out in a few minutes the cramps go away.It may take only 1 to 4 minutes. at the time I got this advise my age was in the mid thirties, now I am 85 and it still works every time.

  • alfred

    what is the best way to control triglyceroids?

    • Dave Neff

      As mentioned in the first post above, Dr. Louis J. Ignarro reveals so much more related to the ‘thinning of blood’ naturally! In fact, in his book, “NO More Heart Disease – How Nitric Oxide Can Prevent – Even Reverse – Heart Disease and Strokes,” he details the facts about reversing heart disease. Another book that also addresses triglycerides is, “The Arginine Solution – The First Guide t America’s New Cardio-Enhancing Supplement” by Drs. Robert Fried and Woodson C. Merrell. We have done what they explain and have used a very high quality form of fiber which has both soluble and insoluble fiber from multiple sources in it. The soluble absorbs lots of toxins including bad cholesterol from the colon and the insoluble scrubs off the walls of the colon to keep it healthy and allow improved ability to absorb nutrients into the cells of the body. Sincerely for better health, Dave

    • Dick Mann


  • http://personalliberty Jefferson

    Hello All, Serrapeptase & Resveratrol are also very good for blood vessel health. -Jeff

  • Kent

    Since natto is a product of soybeans, should men be taking it? Soy is very high in estrogen

    • V.Mayes


      Any soybean products that have been naturally fermented as in Miso, Natto, Naturally fermented soy sauce is very healthy. It is the
      products that are made from the unfermented soybean which should be avoided, eg. soybeans, products made from the beans, soyburgers and other like products.

      • Kent

        Thanks for info V. Everybody else I talked said there were no known side effects to natto….which was not my question.

    • Hart Stringfellow

      I survived a pulmonary embolism and am now on coumadin for life. I want to eliminate coumadin and use nattokinase for thinning my blood, but need the assurance that I can safely stop the coumadin. Can you advise me on this? Would taking both be the answer to my blood viscosity problem? How do I measure blood viscosity to insure safe levels? I can measure the concentration of coumadin(INR index), but is this also a measure of blood viscosity?

      • Bob Willey


        My situation same as Hart, so have same interst.
        Thanks, Bob Willey

  • Rob

    Kent asked a very pertinent question. “Since natto comes from soy, should men be taking it?”
    I have just begun taking nattokinase because of the clot factor. I would appreciate a
    definitive answer to Kent’s question, as I am sure he would too.

  • jennice

    Our son age 45 has had two strokes, a year apart. Heart and hypertension runs very high one both parents and family. He is on Crestor (statin) Plavix. His first stroke came one week after he was hospitalized for one day and released, placed on meds for heart. The second stroke came one year later. His left leg and arm has some movement. His speech is slow when he gets tired. What natural vits. could him take to help his body heal.
    Thank you.

    • Dick Mann

      I replaced Statins after I had a Total Black out while driving! I had read one of the health reports from a Doctor who had the same reaction! and he wrote that when he stopped the Statin he was normal and that. I stopped and that was was about 4 month ago! with No side affects and NO BLACK OUTS SINCE. I have since entered in the Hospitals Computer a drugs list that I am allergict to including Statins. To prvent my Dr from Perscribing these MEDS!
      I also use ACIA purple berry and I loose weight, and control my sugar level with Cinnomin. Any Purple Fruit or Vegatables have a great deal of Anti-oxidents.

      • Dick Mann

        For Leg Cramps I find that I need (K) Potasium and the cramps go away! I am on HemoDyalsis ad that process takes potsium from my blood as it is being cleaned as a result I am more tired and get cramps in my legs when I walk after a K dose I am OK!

  • Donna

    I’d like to know…
    Four years ago I ended up in the hospital with blood clots in my legs. They told me I had such big clots a large portion of them would never dissolve even after taking Heparin and Warfarin.
    What I’d like to know is will this nattokinase help get rid of the blood clots that have been there for so long and if it does start dissolving them, will there be pieces breaking off the clots big enough to cause problems elsewhere?

  • Alf

    About 1and1/2 years ago, I had an event that caused me to pass out while running a short distance. The local hospital thought it was a heart deficiency, but cardiac catherization indicated no problem. It was determined that I had apulmonary embolism resuting from the break-up of a blood clot in my lower leg. I was on heparin
    andlovonox for a few days and then on 7 to 10 mg. of warfarin for about six months. After that experience, I have noticed a recent rise in BP from 130/30 to 152/41. On that note , I have decided to lightly medicate or naturally medicate this condition as I am concerned with the possibility of a replay. My doctor has prescribed lisinopril. Does anyone have any experience with this med?

  • maureen Shultis

    Iam a 70 yr. old woman with chari malformation. My doctor put me on plavix , because he feels Iam susceptable to strokes and heart attack because of the chari. I want to get off it. I would like to hear more about this natural solution and how do I go about it. I would also like to hear what plavix does to the skin. thank you.

  • Mike Stafford

    Mike on April 6, ’09 @ noon

    My suggestion to nearly all of the above complaints – especially for those with clotting problems, vascular problems and arthritis/muscle pain – is to take .5 teaspoon daily of ground ginger. It has an incredibly long history of use world wide (5000 years) for a huge array of diseases. The reason it works on so wide an array of conditions is that it hits the base of our physiological problem – oxidation/reduction damage and chronic inflammation. It is as strong or stronger than all the NSAID-type meds yet has never been shown to have any side effects except gentle improvement. It is far superior to baby aspirin for blood thinning and less expensive. Get it at local Gordon Food Stores in the herb section in one pound bottles. Start slowly to see how you tolerate it, but it has been used to obliterate rheumatoid arthritis at dosage of fifty grams per day for up to 120 days without side effects. The book on ginger was written by Paul Schulick.

  • Marie

    In reply to a statement made in the beginning of this article implying that none of the blood thinners thins blood too much.

    I almost died from thin blood due to prescribing too much Warfarin, and was hospitilized for a week.

    I can tell when my blood is too thin, I get blood in the eyes. I’m having the problem as I write this and will try the fish oil capsules and if it works, will get off the Warfarin..

  • Resveratrol Benefits

    Hmmmm that’s cool.

  • Joey

    My Dad had a Aorta valve replacement in 2006, and since he has had intestinal bleeding which has been corrected. Now, he has had urinary bleeding and is currently in the hospital for the third time trying to stop it and the clotting. Prior, they did a biopsy on his prostate and bladder and now he can’t heal from the procedure. Once he gets back on the coumadin he bleeds and they take him off for a few days then he clots and can’t urinate. We need help! I feel that this rat poison is bad news for my father. He is getting discourage sinse he has been so active. Can anyone help?


  • DaveW

    It appears that many are afraid to give solutions they’ve read about for fear of being accused of practising medicine. The solution to this to say you took this remedy even if you didn’t but feel your source is reliable. I take coumadin. To experiement I discontinued it for two weeks prior to an INR test and took vitamin E, natto, vinpocetine and ginko biloba. The test still read my blood as being below 2.5 or too thick. This has me questioning wether the electronic gadget reads blood thickness or the amount of coumadin in the blood.

    • Mark

      DaveW and Janie,

      I’m new to this as my wife recently received a mechanical mitral valve and is now on Coumadin. But I have been reading articles and books for about a year now that recommend natural supplements over patent medicines.

      I think the INR measures how long it takes for your blood to clot. (Double-check this). So that is a good measure for Dave’s experiment. Generally, supplements take a long time to kick in. They work with your body to enhance your body’s health, but this takes time. This contrasts with drugs which often inhibit a body function right away.

      For example, warfarin works by inhibits vitamin K. Vitamin K is necessary for clotting blood. As a result more warfarin means less K, which means less clotting. So the drug works to reduce clots and it works pretty darned quick too.

      The problem is that vitamin K has many benefits. So suppressing vitamin K may have long term side effects. It seems that vitamin K drives calcium to the bones and out of blood. Suppressing vitamin K may, over time, lead to osteoperosis and to hardening of the blood vessels.

      DaveW, I think the problem with your experiment was that the supplements did not have the time to kick in. I think you would have better chances of a good outcome if you slowly added supplements, and waited for the doctors to tell you that you could scale back on the Coumadin. Perhaps one day, they could take you off Coumadin altogether. I applaud you taking control of your health, but perhaps you need to be more patient.

      By the way, my wife’s INR goal is between 2.5 and 3. So your 2.5 does not sound so bad to me.

      I have the same concerns as you two. I want to find a doctor who thinks like we do so as to safely work my wife off of Coumadin and onto a natural supplement, under his supervision.

      By the way, a generic recommendation I read was 2 to 3 tablespoons of cod liver oil each day along with 800-1,000 IU of vitamin E. But it seems to me that this should vary with the person and their medical condition. I haven’t seen even a generic recommendation for Natto. So the only way to proceed would be to adjust diet/supplements then track INR test results, etc.

  • Janie Upchurch

    That is the question that I keep asking and never getting an answer to.
    Since my husband has been upping his nutritional suppliments, many of the ones mentioned above, he keeps getting prescribed higher and higher wayfarin. So while his blood theoretically is getting the nutrients it needs to function better and clot well only when it needs to while flowing freely when it does not need to clot, I think they must be measuring something else in order to keep giving the meds, indeed to keep upping the meds. I think the more good and beneficial K my husband has in hes body that should be making him more healthy and balanced, the more they up the meds to irradicat the K. They seem to thing the K is the issue because they do not seem to under what K does past the clotting factor and they do not seem to understand that K actually regulates clotting/not clotting for a balance in our bodies.
    Who can and will answer this quandry for Dave and for me?

  • Mark Levin MD


    Drug-food and drug-vitamin interactions can be deadly, especially in the case of anticoagulants. I ran across this article and after reviewing the comments, I just had to inject a comment from a medical professional. Coumadin / Warfarin and other anticlotting/antiplatelet therapies can require frequent testing, but they are the best medications to safely avoid DVT/stroke/pulmonary embolism.

    As for supplements and vitamins, I recommend the NutraSafe brand of liquid and pill vitamins. They are specifically formulated to be safe for cancer patients and those on anticoagulants. Make sure your vitamins are clinical grade and take care to avoid ones with Vitamin K, which directly interfere with blood clotting and INR levels needed to dose warfarin/Coumadin.

  • clementi1111

    are there any safe alternatives to coumadin? doesn’t seem so, unless you need minor anticoagulation- maybe nattokinase ,plavix, or aspirin would work. seems like dabigatran and new generation anticoags would be safe and improved alternatives, provided they are approved by fda.
    am on coumadin for heart valve and pray new generation anticoags will be approved for heart valves. the effect of coumadin on the elderly is
    scary so I will need reoperation (this is scary also!) so coumadin won’t kill me in old age. hope doctor sees this as necessary.

  • Hermine Wallie

    I don’t get it

  • Rasin

    All Medical Doctor know coumadin/heparin

    Nattokinase works but on another cascade in the clotting mechanism. It does not effect the pt/inr. Just do the research go to

  • Mike

    I just had three stent in coronary arterie and been on effient and switched to plavix. Bad side effects from both mostly headaches pains and anxiety and nausea. Can I stop and just take natto withfish oil…I also have gastritis and hiatal hernia…My doctors pa doesn’t know what to do with me

  • Fitness

    Very good article! We are linking to this particularly great content on our website.
    Keep up the great writing.


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