Daily probiotic reduces blood pressure


Taking a probiotic every day for at least 8 weeks, either as a food or supplement, can lower your blood pressure, according to a new meta-analysis of all the evidence to date. Writing in the prestigious Hypertension journal of the American Heart Association, researchers from Griffith University in Australia analyzed 9 studies including 543 people. They found that probiotics lowered systolic blood pressure (the top and usually higher number on your blood pressure reading) by an average of about 3.6 mmHg, and lowered diastolic blood pressure (the bottom number) by an average of about 2.4 mmHg. The greatest benefit was seen in people who had an elevated blood pressure to start with and who took at least 100 billion “colony forming units” or CFUs (a standard measure of bacteria) per day. However, studies in which people took probiotics for less than 8 weeks found no effect. (Source: Hypertension, 2014; doi: 10.1161/HYPERTENSIONAHA.114.03469)

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