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Vegetable Protein Reduces Blood Pressure

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According to a new study, vegetable consumption may be linked to lower blood pressure due to the presence of a specific amino acid.

The compound in question is glutamic acid, and according to the work conducted at the Feinberg School of Medicine at Northwestern University in Chicago, boosting its intake may contribute to better health of the circulatory system.

The researchers analyzed data from the International Study on Macro/Micronutrients and Blood Pressure which involved 4,680 people aged between 40-59 in rural and urban populations in China, Japan, the UK and the U.S.

Increasing the consumption of protein-rich vegetables by 4.72 percent resulted in a 1.5 to 3 millimeters of mercury (mm Hg) decrease in systolic blood pressure and a 1 to 1.6 mm Hg reduction in diastolic pressure.

“It is estimated that reducing a population’s average systolic blood pressure by 2 mm Hg could cut stroke death rates by 6 percent and reduce mortality from coronary heart disease by 4 percent,” says Dr. Jeremiah Stamler, professor emeritus of the Department of Preventive Medicine in the Feinberg School.

In view of these results, the alkaline diet—which is rich in citrus fruits, vegetables, tubers, nuts and legumes—may also be beneficial for those at risk of high blood pressure.

Source: Better Health Research. Oct. 26.’09

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