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Fiber as a Blood Pressure Lowering Medication?

Fiber as a Blood Pressure Lowering Medication?A study published in this month’s American Journal of Clinical Nutrition finds that eating 3 servings of whole grains per day can decrease the incidence of heart attack by 15% and stroke by 25%.

The study was designed and conducted by researchers from the Rowett Institute of Nutrition and Health, College of Life Sciences and Medicine, University of Aberdeen, Scotland and included over 200 healthy, middle-aged subjects.

Following a 4-week introductory period on a refined diet, subjects were randomized to a 12-week diet consisting of either:

  • Refined diet (control group)
  • Wheat containing diet
  • Wheat + oats diet

At the study’s conclusion, the researchers determined that the whole grain consumption groups (wheat or wheat + oats) experienced a 5-6 mm Hg drop in systolic blood pressure. According to study director Dr. Frank Thies, this is about the amount you would expect to see on conventional hypertension medication regimens. The study is registered here at clinicaltrials.gov.

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