Blueberries might have incredible health benefits on the well functioning of the arteries and keeping a lower blood pressure.
Study shows that women eating frozen or dried blueberries for a month had lower blood pressure and higher levels of a substance that relaxes the walls of the blood vessels, which means that blueberries improved the state of the blood vessels apart from reducing the blood pressure, explained a nutrition researcher and leader of the study, Sarah Johnson, from the Florida State University in Tallahassee.
The positive benefits of blueberries shouldn’t replace hypertension medication. The berries might be involved in balancing the rising blood pressure and decrease the stiffening of blood vessels in women after menopause, which increases the risks of heart diseases.
Previous studies, published in the Journal of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, have also suggested that blueberries may have an implication in lowering blood pressure.
The flavonoids contained by blueberries along with other healthy compounds, may help the boosting of nitric oxide, a substance that changes the cells that line the walls of the blood vessels.
The study was conducted on a number of 48 women, who had past menopause, with an average age of 55 and alarming high blood pressure. For the duration of eight weeks, half of the women ate 22 grams, around one and a half tablespoons of frozen-dried blueberries powder, which stands for a cup of res blueberries.The other half ate, a powder that looks identical, but it didn’t contain blueberries.
Researchers have measured their blood pressure and stiffness of arteries, at the start of the study, and after four and eight weeks.
The American Heart Association, states that a blood pressure under 120 mg Hg, for the top number and less than 80 mm Hg for the bottom number was in the healthy range.
At the beginning of the study, the average blood pressure of the participants, for both groups was 138/79 mm Hg. After a month, the situation hasn’t changed in none of the groups. However, after the passing of eight weeks, the women who consumed blueberry powder presented an average blood pressure of 131/75 mm Hg, a decrease of 5 to 6%. The group of women eating the fake powder didn’t show any improvements.
Another discovery, was the fact that the level of the nitric oxide in the blood, went up with 68% within the women consuming the actual blueberry powder, which could have been linked to the lowering of the blood pressure.
People have different reactions to drugs and some might prove less efficient than blueberries, other may work better but could have severe side effects
Further studies in understanding the link between blueberries and arterial health are needed. This study, has been the first step in opening new doors for other foods and medication that could lower the blood pressure based on the same system.
Image Source: Health Fitness Revolution
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