Beetroot Juice May Lower Blood Pressure
Maintaining a healthy blood pressure level is an important part of keeping your heart healthy. A recent study suggests that drinking beetroot juice every day may lower blood pressure by as much as 5 mmHG in healthy male adults.
Previous studies have indicated that the beetroot juice’s high nitrate content may help relax blood vessels.
Participants in the study included 30 adults (15 men and 15 women) between the ages of 23 and 68. Half of the group drank 500 g of beetroot and apple juice while the other half drank apple juice as a placebo. After consuming the beverage, researchers took their blood pressure every hour for 24 hours.
Two weeks later, the researchers repeated the intervention, but switched the groups. They noted that six hours after drinking the beetroot juice, all of the participants showed slightly lower systolic blood pressure. However, when they examined the data by gender, they discovered that for men systolic blood pressure was lower by 4 to 5 mmHg.
A reduction in systolic blood pressure of 5 mmHG has been linked with a 10% reduction in risk of cardiovascular mortality.
The study was conducted by researchers from Baker IDI Heart and Diabetes Institute in Australia. It was published online ahead of print on December 11, 2012 in the Nutrition Journal.
The heart health benefits seen here could be the result of the high nutrient content of beetroot. Some of the nutrients found in these colorful vegetables include vitamin C, vitamin K, folate, fiber and polyphenols. All of these have been shown in previous studies to have a beneficial effect on cardiovascular health.
Previous studies have shown that beetroots may also improve brain health and digestive health, as well as boost stamina and combat liver problems.