Hide this
 

Lower Your Blood Pressure With Vitamin C

January 24, 2009 | 205,121 views
Share This Article Share

vitamin C, blood pressure, hyper tension, high blood pressureA study has linked high blood levels of vitamin C with lower blood pressure in young women.

The study involved almost 250 women. They entered the trial when they were 8 to 11 years old, and over a 10-year period, their plasma levels of ascorbic acid (vitamin C) and blood pressure were monitored. Both their systolic and diastolic blood pressure readings, were found to be inversely associated with ascorbic acid levels.

Previous research had already linked high plasma levels of vitamin C with lower blood pressure among middle-age and older adults.

What Are GMOs?

From April 19th through April 25th we launch GMO Awareness Week. We set aside an entire week dedicated to providing you with information on GMOs and labeling initiatives.

GMOs are a product of genetic engineering, meaning their genetic makeup has been altered to induce a variety of “unique” traits to crops, such as making them drought-resistant or giving them “more nutrients.” GMO proponents claim that genetic engineering is “safe and beneficial,” and that it advances the agricultural industry. They also say that GMOs help ensure the global food supply and sustainability. But is there any truth to these claims? I believe not. For years, I've stated the belief that GMOs pose one of the greatest threats to life on the planet. Genetic engineering is NOT the safe and beneficial technology that it is touted to be.

Help Support GMO Labeling

The Grocery Manufacturers Association (GMA)—Monsanto’s Evil Twin—is pulling out all the stops to keep you in the dark about what’s in your food. For nearly two decades, Monsanto and corporate agribusiness have exercised near-dictatorial control over American agriculture. For example, Monsanto has made many claims that glyphosate in Roundup is harmless to animals and humans. However, recently the World Health Organization (WHO) had their research team test glyphosate and have labeled it a probable carcinogen.

Public opinion around the biotech industry's contamination of our food supply and destruction of our environment has reached the tipping point. We're fighting back. That's why I was the first to push for GMO labeling. I donated a significant sum to the first ballot initiative in California in 2012, which inspired others to donate to the campaign as well. We technically "lost the vote, but we are winning the war, as these labeling initiatives have raised a considerable amount of public awareness.

The insanity has gone far enough, which is why I encourage you to boycott every single product owned by members of the GMA, including natural and organic brands. More than 80 percent of our support comes from individual consumers like you, who understand that real change comes from the grassroots.

Thankfully, we have organizations like the Organic Consumers Association (OCA) to fight back against these junk food manufacturers, pesticide producers, and corporate giants.

Internet Resources Where You Can Learn More

Together, Let's Help OCA Get The Funding They Deserve

Let’s Help OCA get the funding it deserves. I have found very few organizations who are as effective and efficient as OCA. It’s a public interest organization dedicated to promoting health justice and sustainability. A central focus of the OCA is building a healthy, equitable, and sustainable system of food production and consumption. That's why I'm proud to announce I will be matching donations up to $250,000 this week.

Please make a donation to help OCA fight for GMO labeling.


Donate Today!

 

Dr. Mercola's Comments:

Uncontrolled high blood pressure (hypertension) is a serious health concern that can cause heart disease and increase your risk of having a stroke. It is especially danger­ous because hypertension often has no warning signs or symptoms.  Amazingly, the risk of becoming hypertensive is greater than 90 percent for indi­viduals in developed countries, according to research published in the Lancet two years ago.

But the really great news is that over 85 percent of those who have hypertension can normalize their blood pressure through lifestyle modifications, whereas statistics show over half of people taking multiple medications for high blood pressure are still not able to manage their condition.  

So if you have hypertension, or hope to avoid it, know that there are simple steps you can take to balance your blood pressure without harmful and/or ineffective medications! 

Vitamin C and Your Blood Pressure

Several studies have examined the impact of vitamin C on blood pressure. Vitamin C is an antioxidant, which helps neutralize cell-damaging free radicals. Research has shown that antioxidants can help to reduce high blood pressure, possibly by protecting your body's supply of nitric oxide, a molecule that relaxes blood vessels.

The current study, published in the Nutrition Journal, found that both the systolic and diastolic (top and bottom) readings were inversely associated with ascorbic acid levels.

Specifically, women with the highest levels of ascorbic acid had a decline of about 4.6 mm Hg in systolic and just over 6 mm Hg in diastolic blood pressure, compared with women with the lowest ascorbic acid levels.

Previous research has also confirmed that adding vitamin C to your diet can help to reverse the degenerative process caused by free radicals, resulting in lower blood pressure levels.

Interestingly, vitamin C can also give extra oomph to other antioxidants, such as catechins, which are naturally occurring antioxidants found in green tea.

Green tea has been linked to heart- and cardiovascular health as it improves both blood flow and the ability of your arteries to relax. One 2007 study discovered that complementing green tea with either citrus juices or vitamin C increases the amount of catechins available for your body to absorb.

The possibility of a natural agent being able to lower blood pressure and help prevent heart disease is certainly worth noting, especially when you consider the damage that many, if not most, drugs can do.

For example, beta-blockers -- a class of drugs frequently prescribed to manage high blood pressure and as cardioprotection after a heart attack -- have been found to cause type 2 diabetes by decreasing your insulin sensitivity.   This, as you will see in the next section, is actually promoting the very problem you’re trying to solve.

Your best bet is to focus on getting a moderate amount of fruits and plenty of vegetables in your diet; the types and amounts being adjusted based on your nutritional type.

But if you decide to supplement with vitamin C, it is important to remember that it is a water-soluble vitamin and ideally should be taken at least three times a day. It is also best taken with bioflavanoids, which further enhance its benefits. 

Please note that if you are highly sensitive to vitamin C, you may experience diarrhea. This is an indication that you need to lower your dosage.

That said, something else may have a far greater impact on your blood pressure than vitamin C and antioxidants, although they may help alleviate high blood pressure to a certain degree. It should be perfectly clear to everyone that these nutrients are not the cure for high blood pressure, but they can provide some protection while you address the main causes of your problem.

Insulin – A MAJOR Player in Regulating Blood Pressure

Groundbreaking research published in 1998 in the journal Diabetes reported that nearly two-thirds of the test subjects who were insulin resistant also had high blood pressure. This crucial connection between insulin resistance and hypertension is yet another example of how wide-ranging the debilitating effects of high insulin, leptin and blood glucose levels can have on your body. 

Additionally, previous research has revealed that if your blood pressure doesn’t drop notably overnight, you run an increased risk of having cardiovascular problems. Here, the connection is also elevated blood sugar (glucose) levels as elevated blood sugars can result in diabetes and other diseases which increase cardiovascular problems. 

Hence, if you have hypertension, chances are good that you also have poorly controlled blood sugar levels. The two problems often go hand in hand.

And if your hypertension is the direct result of an out-of-control blood sugar level, then normalizing your blood sugar levels will also bring your blood pressure readings into the healthy range.

How to Reduce Your Blood Pressure Without Dangerous Drugs

Typically, optimizing your diet -- which will normalize your insulin levels -- is the most effective route to return your blood pressure to normal levels.

Cardiovascular exercise and tools like the Emotional Freedom Technique (EFT), which helps negate the effects of stress on your life, are also important.

Other recommendations that can help bring your blood pressure under control include:

  • Eliminate or limit grains and sugars from your diet – This alone will lower insulin levels and normalize blood pressure in about 75 percent of people
  • Eliminate or limit caffeine
  • Consume healthy omega-3 fats, such as krill- or fish oil
  • Get a daily dose of sunshine to optimize your vitamin D levels -- Sun exposure causes your body to produce vitamin D. Lack of sunlight re­duces your vitamin D stores and increases parathyroid hormone produc­tion, which increases blood pressure. Vitamin D deficiency has also been linked to insulin resistance, which can raise your blood pressure
  • Get a good night’s sleep
  • Get plenty of exercise

In addition to vitamin C, other natural supplements that can help improve your blood pressure include:

  • Grape seed extract – another powerful antioxidant that has been shown to reduce blood pressure by an average of 8-12 millimeters. The antioxidant capacity of grape seed extract comes from proanthocyanidins. Scientific studies have shown that the antioxidant power of proanthocyanidins is 20 times stronger than vitamin C and 50 times stronger than vitamin E.
  • Olive leaf extract – One recent study found that supplement users taking 1,000 mg of olive leaf extract per day showed a substantial dip in their blood pressure, in addition to lowered levels of LDL cholesterol. The active agent responsible for the hypotensive action of the olive leaf is oleuropein, which acts as an antioxidant and helps relax and dilate your blood vessels

Thank you! Your purchases help us support these charities and organizations.

Food Democracy Now
Mercury Free Dentistry
Fluoride Action Network
National Vaccine Information Center
Institute for Responsible Technology
Organic Consumers Association
Center for Nutrtion Advocacy
Cornucopia Institute
Vitamin D Council
GrassrootsHealth - Vitamin D*action
Alliance for Natural Health USA
American Holistic Veterinary Medical Foundation
The Rabies Challenge Fund
Cropped Catis Mexico