Blueberries may help to control blood pressure
A new study has found that women who ate freeze-dried blueberries for two months had lowered blood pressure and increased levels of a chemical that relaxes blood vessel walls.
“This tells us that blueberries may improve the health of blood vessels in addition to reducing blood pressure,” said Sarah Johnson, a nutrition and exercise researcher at Florida State University in Tallahassee who led the study.
Johnson and her co-authors do not suggest that blueberries should replace hypertension medications. But they say the berries might help offset a tendency toward rising blood pressure and stiffening blood vessels after menopause that raises women’s heart disease risk.
Past research has suggested that blueberries may help lower blood pressure, the authors write in the Journal of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. Some studies have also indicated that the flavonoids and other healthy plant compounds in blueberries may help to boost nitric oxide, a chemical that affects the cells that line blood vessel walls. -Web Report