Fiber Combats Hypertension

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Adding more fiber to a diet may help lower blood pressure and may help enhance healthy blood pressure levels. For the investigation, the researchers used a meta-analysis study, which combines information from many studies to look for trends that otherwise may not be noticed. The study evaluated data on 1500 adults in 25 studies. The researchers found that consuming between 7 and 19 g of fiber daily resulted in a reduction in both systolic and diastolic blood pressure.

"We performed a comprehensive analysis of data from 25 clinical trials, and all the data pointed to one strong conclusion—adding fiber to a person's diet has a health effect on their blood pressure," according to lead author and medical student Seamus Whelton. He further explained why the researchers chose a meta-analysis study. "Analyzing a large number of studies lends strength to the conclusions of clinical trials that involved too few participants [individually] to show an effect of dietary fiber on blood pressure."

The researchers suggested that individuals incorporate fruits and vegetables into their diet in order to increase their intake of dietary fiber. They noted that additional changes in diet and exercise can help lower blood pressure and should be discussed with a physician.