About Gundry MD Heart Defense

By HighYa Staff
Published on: Oct 17, 2017

Using a precise, powerful blend of cocoa flavanols and anti-aging nutrients, Gundry MD Heart Defense is a dietary supplement that promises to protect your cardiovascular system, support heart health and longevity, and optimize your weight.

Specifically, the website reports the supplement works to dilate blood vessels and improve circulation, leading to healthy blood vessels and a strong heart. We’re told this could also result in boosted energy, physical stamina, and mental clarity, along with effective appetite control for weight management.

To experience these benefits, Gundry MD indicates you'll need to mix one scoop of Heart Defense with six to eights ounces of water (hot or cold; your choice) and drink, with or without a meal. If continued daily, the site advertises that most users report a noticeable increase in energy within an hour of use, with decreased appetite and cravings for unhealthy foods within the first two weeks.

Despite all these benefits, the company claims that the supplement is 100 percent safe with no known side effects, and that the formula is tested for content and purity at an independent, third-party facility.

Is cocoa really this good for your health? Even then, is Gundry MD’s Heart Defense formula the best way of achieving these benefits? Does it provide a high level of value?

You need answers to important questions like these before handing over your hard-earned money. Give us a few minutes, and we'll help you find some answers, starting with the basics.

What’s the Link Between Flavanols & Heart Health?

According to the Cleveland Clinic, the cocoa beans used to create chocolate contain high levels of a plant nutrient classification known as flavonoids.

In their natural environment, they report that flavonoids help protect plants from environmental toxins, as well as help to repair damage. And when humans consume these nutrients, they similarly act as antioxidants; i.e., they can help “protect the body from damage caused by harmful molecules called free radicals.”

These free radicals can also cause an increase in the formation of low-density lipoprotein (LDL), or "bad" cholesterol, on artery walls, which could eventually lead to heart disease.

Thus, as frequently promoted on the Heart Defense website, the National Institute of Health’s PubMed reflects hundreds of studies linking cocoa flavanols with improved cardiovascular health. According to Dr. Miguel Alonso-Alonso, a neuroscientist at Harvard-affiliated Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, 200mg of cocoa flavanols are recommended, along with a balanced diet.

However, he also emphasizes that “flavanols are often destroyed in the production of chocolate,” so highly processed foods like candy bars often don’t have a lot of flavanols remaining; at least in relation to their sugar and fat content.

For this reason, the Cleveland Clinic article emphasizes that you should “enjoy moderate portions of chocolate (e.g., 1 ounce) a few times per week, and don't forget to eat other flavonoid-rich foods like apples, red wine, tea, onions, and cranberries.”

What about the Heart Defense supplement? Does it represent a better way of obtaining heart-healthy cocoa flavanols, without the sugar or calories?

Taking a Closer Look at Heart Defense’s Ingredients

Per the supplement facts label listed on their website, Gundry MD Heart Defense contains the following ingredients:

  • Vitamin D3 (Cholecalciferol) 200IU
  • Calcium 9mg
  • Iron 2mg
  • Sodium 68mg
  • Cocoa (Theobroma cacao) 2.5g
  • Flaxseed (Linum usitatissimum)(seed)(BevGrad) 1g
  • NeuroFactor Whole Coffee Fruit Extract 100mg
  • Inulin (from Chicory (Chichorium intybus)(root) Extract (Frutafit)) 10mg

According to resources like the Natural Medicines Database, WebMD, and Examine.com, vitamin D3, calcium, iron, and sodium are all important vitamins and minerals for optimum health. However, they also indicate that unless you’re deficient, supplementation won’t provide meaningful benefits for otherwise healthy individuals.

We contacted customer service and learned that while each dose of Heart Defense contains 2.5g of cocoa, it only contains 100mg of flavanols.

These sites also report that 40-50 grams of flaxseed daily could help reduce LDL cholesterol, although the supplement in question only delivers 1g per dose.

The NIH’s PubMed references 30 clinical studies looking at some aspect of whole coffee fruit, although none made a direct correlation between its consumption and improved cardiovascular health.

The manufacturer of the proprietary NeuroFactor whole coffee fruit ingredient advertises that it’s been clinically researched to “deliver support for naturally declining neuroprotein levels in humans.” However, they don’t provide any of this evidence for third-party review.

Next, 10-14g of inulin daily is reported to help lower triglyceride levels by up to 19 percent after eight weeks of treatment.

Finally, while Gundry MD’s Heart Defense might not contain all the same ingredient dosages found in supporting clinical trials or professional recommendations, it only contains 35 calories, 1g of fat, and 68mg of sodium (the recommended limit is 1,500-2,300mg per day), so it certainly seems to represent a healthier way of ingesting flavanols than via processed chocolate.

Will Gundry MD Heart Defense Cause Any Side Effects?

According to the Natural Medicines Database and WebMD, these ingredients, when taken in the dosages above, likely won’t cause any side effects. And if they do, it likely won’t be worse than mild digestive upset (no specific circumstances noted).

However, they indicate that inulin could have a moderate interaction with diabetes and anticoagulant medications. This is why it’s always a smart idea to speak with a healthcare professional before taking any new dietary supplement, Heart Defense or otherwise.

How Much Does Gundry MD Heart Defense Cost?

Gundry MD has priced Heart Defense as follows:

  • 1 Jar: $49.95 (8.99oz, 30-day supply)
  • 3 Jars: $134.85 ($44.95 per jar)
  • 6 Jars: $259.70 ($43.28 per jar)

All orders come with free shipping and a 90-day money back guarantee, less S&H. In order to request one, customer support can be reached at (800) 852-0477.

What Can We Learn From Heart Defense & Gundry MD Online Customer Reviews?

The only site we encountered any online feedback for the Heart Defense supplement at the time of our research was on Amazon, where one customer gave it a five-star rating due to their experience with increased energy, without jitters.

However, Gundry MD has been in business since 2016 and has released many popular supplements and skincare products in that time, including Vital Reds, Primal Plants, Dark Spot Diminisher, and Correct + Calm Redness Relief Cream.

And among well over 1,000 HighYa readers, their products have nearly a five-star overall average rating, with common compliments citing effective results, despite sometimes-higher prices than the competition.

From a company perspective, Gundry MD held an A rating with the Better Business Bureau, based on nine customer reviews (56 percent of which were negative) and 24 closed complaints, as of 10/17/17. When details were available, most of these appeared to revolve around customer service issues.

However, it’s important to point out that a company representative responded in each instance with a resolution.

How to Choose a Chocolate Flavonoid Supplement

Searching online marketplaces like Google Shopping and Amazon.com, we found dozens of chocolate flavonoid supplements competing with Heart Defense; some of which were also powdered, while others came in capsule or chewable form.

Price-wise, some could be purchased for as little as $3, while others exceeded $70. So, at $50 for a single-order option, Heart Defense certainly seems to be on the upper end of the price spectrum. How can you decide if it’s right for you?

While we didn’t test Heart Defense ourselves to provide any firsthand feedback, according to ConsumerLab’s testing (note: membership required for full study access), many cocoa supplements are “contaminated with cadmium at several times established limits,” so be sure to thoroughly research this aspect, or even contact any manufacturers you’re considering to learn more.

Related: Can Cacao Replace Your Morning Cup of Coffee

They also emphasize that most companies don’t list their flavanol content (as we learned with Heart Defense), although customer support should be able to provide this information. If not, you might want to consider a competitor.

Finally, they note that you should make sure the cocoa powder hasn’t been dutched, or alkali processed, which could reduce flavanol content by anywhere between 60 and 90 percent. Again, this isn’t typically something advertised by companies, so you might need to contact them directly when researching.

How does all of this add up?

Our Final Thoughts About Gundry MD Heart Defense

The bottom line is that organizations like the Natural Medicines Database, the National Institutes of Health’s PubMed, Harvard Health, and the Cleveland Clinic report that ingesting 100-200mg of cocoa flavanols per day could provide a variety of antioxidant and cardiovascular benefits, if consumed on a regular basis.

However, outside of verifying cadmium and flavanol levels, as well as ensuring the powder hasn't been dutched, none of these sites reported that customers would obtain meaningfully better results by paying a higher price.

Note: We contacted customer support, who advised that Heart Defense isn’t tested for cadmium, and (even after speaking with a supervisor) they didn’t have any information as to whether or not the cocoa powder is dutched.

With this said, Gundry MD’s products come with highly positive online customer ratings—including here on HighYa, and the company stands behind them with a 90-day refund policy, which should be more than enough time to decide if Heart Defense is right for you. Just remember that if you’re not satisfied, you’ll have to pay a few bucks to return the supplement to the manufacturer.

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14 Consumer Reviews for Gundry MD Heart Defense

Average Consumer Rating: 4.6
Rating Snapshot:
5 star: 11 4 star: 2 3 star: 0 2 star: 0 1 star:  1
Bottom Line: 93% would recommend it to a friend
Showing 1-11 of 14
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  • 1 out 1 people found this review helpful

    Lower blood pressure, better digestion, weight loss, more energy, makes great tasting shakes.

    • Hideaway, TX,
    • Jan 7, 2019
    • Verified Reviewer

    I just turned 74 and have used Dr. Gundry's Vital Reds product for over a year. Great product for your gut. I bought the Heart Defense product about the same time; but, found it less than delicious.

    Recently, I started combining the Vital Reds and the Heart Defense in a delicious shake: 1 big scoop of Heart Defense and 1 scoop of Vital Reds in a blender. Add a .7 oz packet of Stevia, and half to a three-quarter liter of Silk unsweetened vanilla almond milk. I use the low, puree setting on the blender for 2 to 3 minutes. Wow! Just about the best thing that you've ever had. It's hard to wait until the next day to have another.

    Three years ago I had a triple bypass and an artificial aortic heart valve replacement. Recently, my daily blood pressure has been much better and I am off of all medication for blood pressure or cholesterol. Thanks, Dr. Gundry, for your research and caring.

    Regards.

    Bottom Line: Yes, I would recommend this to a friend

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  • 1 out 1 people found this review helpful

    Improved vascular health

    • New Paris, IN,
    • Jan 1, 2019
    • Verified Reviewer

    Taking Dr. Gundry's Heart Defense has improved our vascular health bloodwork numbers without statins. Our physician asked what we were doing differently and we told her about the Gundry products. The products we use have improved our energy, decreased our achiness, and improved our overall health.

    Bottom Line: Yes, I would recommend this to a friend

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  • Great

    • Corvallis, OR,
    • Dec 29, 2018
    • Verified Reviewer

    I love the chocolate taste, it works into a great smoothie. I’ve only used the product a few months but at age 66 am looking to do whatever I can to protect my heart. I know Dr. Gundry has a great reputation for quality products!

    Bottom Line: Yes, I would recommend this to a friend

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  • How I like Heart Defense

    • Sioux Falls, SD,
    • Dec 17, 2018
    • Verified Reviewer

    Hi. I like how my heart feels since I have been using this product. My heart does not skip beats or beat fast like it used to. I take it every day. I do not like the taste or the texture of this product, but I force myself to drink because of the way the product makes my heart feel. I wish they could make it taste better.

    Bottom Line: Yes, I would recommend this to a friend

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  • Heart Defense

    • Indiana,
    • Dec 14, 2018
    • Verified Reviewer

    Heart Defense is not only delicious, but it is energizing, and my blood pressure is always normal. I've been using it for a couple of years and really feel better than before. I have recommended it to several friends who also swear by it.

    Bottom Line: Yes, I would recommend this to a friend

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  • Energy, yes

    • Easton, CT,
    • Dec 7, 2018
    • Verified Reviewer

    In order of action, revving up or energy production, Vital Reds is first, then Heart Defense, then Energy Renew, and finally Primal Plants.

    The order of my personal preference is the reverse order. Primal Plants lowered my blood pressure 10 points in one test. Energy Renew also gives a calm feeling. I use the red and brown for heavy work activities. I like them all for different reasons.

    Bottom Line: Yes, I would recommend this to a friend

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  • Amazing supplement

    • Los Angeles, CA,
    • Nov 18, 2018
    • Verified Reviewer

    I’ve been using Vital Reds on a daily basis for about a year now and recently added a 1/2 scoop of Heart Defense to my daily routine. I really enjoy the flavor combination of these two products mixed together (like a chocolate covered cherry), my digestion and overall energy levels continue to improve, and my skin is clear and less prone to redness and irritation. I’m extremely pleased and grateful for these two products!

    Bottom Line: Yes, I would recommend this to a friend

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  • 1 out 1 people found this review helpful

    Gives energy and tastes good too

    • Tampa, FL,
    • Nov 9, 2018
    • Verified Reviewer

    I used the Heart Defense in the mornings before running on my treadmill. I felt the difference in my energy level. My best test was how I felt on the days that I didn’t take it. I did really notice the difference in my performance. It also tastes really good, especially for those like me who love chocolate.

    Bottom Line: Yes, I would recommend this to a friend

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  • 2 out 2 people found this review helpful

    Heart Defense

    • Roanoke, VA,
    • Nov 7, 2018
    • Verified Reviewer

    Gundry MD Heart Defense is a wonderful product for me. I originally purchased Heart Defense because a product I drank daily was no longer offered in my local stores and I wanted a replacement. So, since I was already familiar and purchasing Dr. Gundry products online, I searched out all the products offered on the site and found Heart Defense.

    While it was not a protein mix, per se, Dr. Gundry convinced me through his thorough breakdown in member emails he sends that it would satisfy my "need" for a tasty drink with health benefits.

    My budget is limited, my health is diagnosed terminal, and my status changes from day to day. But, since taking Heart Defense (and Primal Plants) daily, I feel more energy and somewhat "cleaner." I honestly don't know for sure, but the timing seems right, since taking these two products that I enjoy very much, things with me are better. Actually, much better feeling.

    I have recommended this product to a couple of friends who are concerned about their heart and health conditions, and they have recently ordered. I personally enjoy Heart Defense and don't feel guilty about it, and have eliminated cravings for other chocolate, cappuccino or ice cream like treats that are not good for me. It satisfies all these type cravings and actually fills my stomach too.

    It's hard to choose just one item from Dr. Gundry each month due to limited income, but it works itself out for me through the discounted offers sent to me as a member. Hallelujah!

    Bottom Line: Yes, I would recommend this to a friend

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  • 1 out 1 people found this review helpful

    Feeling younger

    • North Hills, CA,
    • Oct 29, 2018
    • Verified Reviewer

    I use many of the Gundry MD products and Heart Defense is one. I am feeling so much younger now. I can walk further, and I can use the two flights of stairs at my work and skip the elevator.

    Bottom Line: Yes, I would recommend this to a friend

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  • 1 out 1 people found this review helpful

    I love this product

    • Loveland, CO,
    • Oct 16, 2018
    • Verified Reviewer

    I LOVE this product. I feel more energy, and I love the taste (I add a tad more Stevia and some liquid coconut MCT oil). I also daily take their Vital Reds, Primal Plant, PrebioThrive, Total Restore, M Vitality, Energy Restore, and sometimes Peak Mobility, Omega Advanced, and Lectin Shield. Of them all, my favorites (won't live without) are the Vital Reds, Heart Defense, Total Restore, and PrebioThrive.

    Bottom Line: Yes, I would recommend this to a friend

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