Impressive Lowering of Blood Pressure with Flaxseed
Adding flaxseed to the diets of patients with peripheral arterial disease resulted in large drops in blood pressure of around 10 mm Hg systolic and 7 mm Hg diastolic after six months, according to the results of a double-blind, placebo-controlled study.
“This reduction after administration of dietary flaxseed is the largest decrease in BP ever shown by any dietary intervention,” said Dr Delfin Rodriguez (University Hospital Holguin, Cuba) speaking at the American Heart Association 2012 Scientific Sessions. Such reductions would be expected to result in around a 50% fall in the incidence of stroke and a 30% reduction in heart attack.
The researchers chose to study flaxseed because animal studies have shown it has antiatherogenic, anti-inflammatory, and antiarrhythmic effects and may reduce circulating cholesterol and trans-fatty acid levels.
They randomized 110 patients to milled flaxseed (30 g/day) in the form of bagels, muffins, and buns (n=58) or placebo products (n=52), made from wheat with a similar flavor.
The results out to one year are in the process of being analyzed and will be presented at a future date. Stay tuned.