What is blood pressure?
The pressure of blood on your artery walls is referred to as hypertension, also known as high blood pressure.
Over time, blood vessel damage brought on by high blood pressure can result in heart disease, renal disease, stroke, and other issues.
Since hypertension has no symptoms and can go unreported and untreated for years, it is sometimes referred to as the silent killer.
Approximately 75 million Americans are thought to have high blood pressure, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)Trusted Source.
Age, family history, gender, and race are just a few uncontrollable risk factors for high blood pressure.
But there are other things you can influence, like your food and exercise routine. A diet high in potassium, magnesium, and fiber can help manage blood pressure. It should also be lower in sodium.
Flavonoids, which are organic substances, are abundant in berries, particularly blueberries. Consuming these substances, according to one study, may help prevent hypertension and decrease blood pressure.
Strawberries, raspberries, and blueberries are simple fruits to include in your diet.
Keep frozen berries on hand for an easy and nutritious treat, or add them to your cereal or granola in the morning.
Blood Pressure and Berries:
In the study participants who were 60 years of age or younger, the risk decrease from consuming blueberries and strawberries was most pronounced. This may be because the resulting damage over several decades exceeds the capacity of flavonoids to favorably impact (blood vessel) functioning and blood pressure in older persons, according to the study.
The berry relationship was not only a result of the fact that healthier people generally consume better food.
The results persisted even after the researchers considered several dietary, family history, body mass index, physical activity, and other risk factors for high blood pressure.
The recent study did contain certain restrictions. For instance, researchers did not take precise measurements of food intake or blood pressure. Instead, study participants self-reported their blood pressure and diet.
The study’s authors however state that “these results demand further exploration. Including intervention studies designed to assess adequate doses of anthocyanin-rich foods for the avoidance of hypertension and to underlie guidelines for the avoidance and treatment of hypertension.
The results reinforce the value of dietary intervention strategies for blood pressure control before middle age, the researchers added.
Do blueberries help in lowering your blood pressure?
According to a recent study, consuming a bowl of blueberries each day may lower blood pressure.
According to the findings, which were released online on February 16, 2019, by The Journals of Gerontology, Series A: Biological Sciences and Medical Sciences, eating 200 grams of blueberries (or one cup) per day can enhance blood vessel health and lower systolic blood pressure (the top number in a blood pressure reading).
Every day for a month, researchers administered either a drink containing 200 grams including whole wild blueberries, or a control drink (which appeared and tasted identical) to a group of 40 healthy men.
The researchers also kept an eye on the men’s blood pressure and flow-
mediated brachial artery dilatation in their upper arms. This evaluates the artery’s enlargement in response to increased blood flow and serves as a risk indicator for lower cardiovascular disease risk.
After that, the scientists discovered that the blueberry drink increased flow-mediated dilation by 2% within two hours and that the benefit persisted after daily ingestion for a month. Additionally, the average systolic blood pressure dropped by 5 millimeters of mercury. Over the same time, the effect was comparable to that of popular blood pressure medications.
The high anthocyanin content of blueberries was cited by the experts as a potential explanation. The antioxidants called anthocyanins are what give blueberries their deep color.
(While anthocyanins are present in many berries, blueberries contain one of the most significant concentrations. Anthocyanins enhance endothelial cells’ capacity to function.
These cells, which line the inside of blood vessels, aid in controlling blood pressure and blood flow. Blueberries may not only help regulate high blood pressure, but they may also help people from developing hypertension, the researchers concluded.
Blood pressure and anthocyanins
The study’s 40 healthy participants were divided into two groups at random. One group received a daily beverage containing 200 grams (g) of blueberries, while the other party received a control beverage.
The participant’s blood pressure and the flow-mediated dilation (FMD) of their brachial arteries were evaluated to assess the effects of the blueberries.
Using FMD, which evaluates how much the brachial artery widens when blood flows more quickly, one can determine cardiovascular risk.
In the second section of the trial, the scientists contrasted consuming blueberries with either purified anthocyanins or a control beverage that contained amounts of fiber, minerals, or vitamins that were comparable to those in blueberries.
Reduced blood pressure of 5 mm Hg
Only two hours after the volunteers had taken the blueberry drinks did the researchers note any positive benefits.
According to the authors’ findings, purified anthocyanins exerted a dose-
dependent improvement of endothelial function in healthy adults, as evaluated by [FMD]. Inside the heart and blood vessels, there is a type of membrane called the endothelium. It has endothelial cells that regulate the arteries’ expansion and contraction.
Additionally, endothelial cells are essential for blood clotting and assist regulate blood pressure.
The authors say the effects were comparable to those of blueberries with comparable levels of anthocyanins, “whereas control drinks including fiber, minerals, or vitamins had no discernible effect.
It is possible to lower your risk of developing high blood pressure, a significant risk factor for heart disease and stroke, by eating just 1 cup of strawberries or blueberries each week.
The new findings are published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition.
The new study comprised 23,043 males from the Health Professionals Follow-up study, 46,672 women from the Nurses’ Health Study I, and 87,242 women from the nurses’ Health Study II.
Over the subsequent 14 years, 29,018 women and 5,629 males both experienced high blood pressure.
According to the study, men and women who consumed the most anthocyanin from blueberries and strawberries had an 8% lower chance of developing high blood pressure than those who consumed the least of these anthocyanin-rich berries. The bright color of blueberries and strawberries is due to the potent antioxidant anthocyanin.
Additionally, it might aid in widening blood arteries, which facilitates smoother blood flow and reduces the risk of high blood pressure.
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