Forget blood pressure medications like beta-blockers, renin inhibitors, calcium channel blockers, angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitors and angiotensin II receptor blockers...
A new study led by Dr Mark Filipovic, a researcher at the University of Zurich and Cantonal Hospital of Baden in Switzerland, has found that a diet rich in omega-3 fatty acids may also help young adults keep their blood pressure at a healthy level!
Study links a diet rich in omega-3 fatty acids to healthy blood pressure in young adults
To reach their findings, Dr Filipovic and his team looked at over 2,000 healthy young adults.
“We divided people into four groups,” Dr Filipovic said, ranging from the lowest to the highest levels of omega-3 fatty acids in their blood. “We found adults in the highest quarter [group] had about 4 millimetres of mercury [mm Hg] lower systolic pressure and 2 mm Hg lower diastolic pressure, compared to those with the least omega-3 fatty acids in their blood.”
A small reduction in blood pressure
, such as 5 mm, may seem like nothing, but according to Dr Filipovic even a reduction this small can help prevent a great number of strokes and heart events in the general population.
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For your information (if you weren’t sure), systolic blood pressure measures the pressure that’s exerted against the artery walls when the heart beats and is the top number on a blood pressure reading.
Diastolic blood pressure, on the other hand, measures the pressure that’s exerted when the heart rests and is the bottom number on the reading. A healthy blood pressure reading is under 120/9.
Study author concludes that omega-3-rich foods may help prevent high blood pressure
“This suggests that promoting diets rich in omega-3 foods could be a strategy to prevent high blood pressure
,” Dr Filipovic said. Top food sources of omega-3 include fatty fish like sardines, mackerel and salmon, as well as spinach, flaxseed, chia seeds, walnuts and soybeans.
The same goes for omega-3 supplements like fish oil
. Dr Filipovic suggests these supplements may work by reducing inflammation in the body and improving blood vessel function.
Whether you get your omega-3 fix by eating lots of fatty fish and seeds or by taking a supplement, make sure you keep your levels optimal to keep your blood pressure healthy!