Relief for High Blood Pressure: Beetroot Juice & Green Leafy Vegetables

By Stephen T. Sinatra, M.D., F.A.C.C., F.A.C.N., C.N.S., C.B.T.

Researchers in England have found for the first time that a daily dose of beetroot juice can significantly reduce high blood pressure. Their striking results were presented in a 2015 article in the journal Hypertension. In the study, 68 hypertensive non-medicated patients (ages 18 to 85) were randomly divided to take either 250 ml (just over 8 oz.) daily of beetroot juice or a placebo (inert) drink over a 4-week period…

The researchers used three different measuring methods, including 24-hour ambulatory monitoring, which resulted in an impressive average reduction of 7.7 mm Hg systolic and 5.2 mm Hg diastolic.

The researchers also found that endothelial function among the beetroot drinkers improved by about 20 percent and arterial stiffness was reduced. There were no such changes among the placebo drinkers. “This is the first evidence of durable blood pressure reduction with dietary nitrate supplementation in a relevant patient group,” the researchers said, and suggests a role as an “affordable, readily-available, adjunctive treatment in the management” of hypertension.

 My Viewpoint: Beetroot is a source of dietary nitrate, previously found to reduce blood pressure in healthy individuals with normal blood pressure. Nitrates are broken down in the body and promote the production of nitric oxide (NO), a critical compound made in the inner surface of blood vessels (the endothelial lining). NO serves an important function in maintaining the proper dilation of blood vessels. A deficiency is associated with endothelial dysfunction and elevated blood pressure.

 What This Means to You: This is a significant finding because for each 2 mm Hg increase in blood pressure there is a 7 to 10 percent increase in mortality caused by cardiovascular disease. This research should spark interest for further investigation of dietary nitrates, also found abundantly in green leafy vegetables, as a natural aid in the fight against hypertension.

 Recommendation: If you have high blood pressure, check out drinking beetroot juice on a routine basis. It may also help reduce the risk of diabetes. Here, as well, is another good reason to make sure you eat or drink plenty of green leafy and root vegetables. However, be careful with consumption of green leafy veggies if you have a history of kidney stones.

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© 2015 HeartMD Institute. All rights reserved.

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  1. John Garner

    on April 10, 2015 at 8:56 pm

    In the past I had high Iron, Iron Binding, Ferritin and Iron Binding, now it is okay. Beets have
    high iron and I love them. Would taking Carrot Juice with the Beet Juice be better?
    Please respond.

  2. Katherine Rees

    on October 1, 2016 at 9:40 am

    I recently have started drinking 5 g of beet juice a day ( powder form) and have noticed a more consistent lower blood pressure reading, which is good. I also have started exercising more. I was wondering, should I continue to take L-Arginine L-citrulline complex in addition to beet juice? I am 68 years old. Thank you.

  3. Nicolas Martin

    on March 26, 2017 at 3:59 pm

    Drinking 8 ozs. of beet juice a day would cost over $700 a year. Most people can’t afford that. Consuming a cup of beet juice would also add 16 gms. (4 tsps) of sugar to one’s diet each day. A much better strategy is to blend smoothies with lots of green leafy vegetables (along with some fruits (high is nitrite and nitrate), consuming the fiber as well.

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