Children may benefit from diets rich in fruit, vegetables,and low-fat dairy products to help lower bloodpressure. The study followed children, initially aged 3to 6 years, in the Framingham Children's Study for 8years. The families were asked to keep records periodicallyof what children ate, and blood pressure readingsfor the children were taken every year.
Reporting in Epidemiology (January 2005), the researchersfound that children who consumed 4 or moreservings of fruit or vegetables a day and 2 or moreservings of dairy products showed smaller gains in systolicpressure. Fewer differences were found in diastolicpressure. The researchers concluded that childrenwho consumed the most from all 3 groups benefitedgreatly. The children who consumed more of only 1group had more modest benefits. The investigatorssaid that paying attention to what children eat at ayoung age can have a positive effect in decreasing theodds of hypertension as they get older.