Hypertension beaten by beetroot juice
Hypertension is the number one cause of death in the world.
“Given that approximately 50% of treated hypertensive subjects fail to achieve their target BP, an additional strategy, based on intake of nitrate-rich vegetables, may prove to be cost-effective, easily achievable, safe, and favorable for public health”
Amrita Ahluwalia, PhD, of Queen Mary University of London.
What did this simple little study about drinking more vegetable juice find?
- Drinking just one cup of nitrate-rich beetroot juice significantly lowered blood pressure in those with hypertension
- Three to 6 hours after a single cup, systolic BP decreased by a mean 11.2 mm Hg in patients with hypertension
- At 24 hours, systolic BP remained significantly lower in those drinking beetroot juice compared to those who did not
- The theory is that fruits and vegetables increase inorganic nitrate (NO3), which is particularly high in beetroot and leafy vegetables. NO3 is bioactivated by conversion to inorganic nitrite (NO2), which in turn is reduced to nitric oxide (NO), resulting in vasodilation
- Vasodilation is “the widening of blood vessels” (the opposite of the narrowing of the blood vessels)
- All the study participants tolerated the regimen well
Study by Amrita Ahluwalia, PhD, of Queen Mary University of London, and colleagues, et al “Enhanced vasodilator activity of nitrite in hypertension: critical role for erythrocytic xanthine oxidoreductasse and translational potential” as funded by the British Heart Foundation and published in Hypertension: Journal of the American Heart Association.2013; DOI: 10.1161/HYPERTENSIONAHA.111.00933. As reported by MedPage Today on April 15, 2013.