Vitamin-D deficiency is quite prevalent, estimated to occur in 30% to 50% of the general population. There is growing evidence that vitamin-D deficiency or insufficiency adversely affects the cardiovascular system.
In a large population study, the third National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHNES III), a sufficient level of 25 hydroxylvitamin D (over 80 nmol/L) helped reduce the age-related increase in systolic blood pressure by 20%. There is only one high-quality study that demonstrates the blood-pressure-lowering effect of vitamin-D supplements:
The study was conducted in postmenopausal women (146 women, with an average age of 74), who took either 1,200 mg of calcium with 800 IU vitamin D3 or just the calcium alone. They studied the effects of these supplements on blood pressure, heart rate, and vitamin D levels. The changes in blood pressure were as follows:
— Vitamin D and calcium dropped systolic levels from 144 to 131 mmHg. Calcium alone dropped them from 141 to 135 mmHg. Vitamin D and calcium dropped diastolic levels from 85 to 77 mmHg. Calcium alone dropped them from 83 to 76 mmHg.
Overall, 81% in the vitamin D + calcium group (vs. 47% in the calcium group) showed a drop in systolic blood pressure of at least 5.0 mmHg. A vitamin D and calcium combination is more effective in lower systolic blood pressure than calcium alone.
Nine Other Supplements
There are many exciting preliminary studies that show that the following dietary supplements may be effective in lowering blood pressure, mainly in those with hypertension:
— Vitamin C: Drops systolic levels by 9.9 and diastolic levels by 4.4 mmHg
— Linolenic acid: Systolic by 10 and diastolic by 8.0 mmHg
— Garlic: Systolic by 8.4 and diastolic by 7.3 mmHg
— L arginine: Systolic by 5.4 and diastolic by 2.7 mmHg
— Flaxseed oil: Systolic by 3.1 and diastolic by 6.3 mmHg
— Seaweed: Systolic by 14 and diastolic by 5.0 mmHg
— Alpha lipoic acid: Systolic by 9.0 mmHg
— Taurine: Systolic by 9.0 and diastolic by 4.1 mmHg
— Pycnogenol: Systolic by 7.2 mmHg
A leading expert on diet and supplements in hypertension came to a conclusion in a recent article. It was found that certain steps will help control blood pressure in 62% of people with high blood pressure over a period of six months. First, you fix any deficiencies you might have in all vitamins, biotin, folate, pantothenate, calcium, magnesium, zinc, copper, alpha lipoic acid, coenzyme Q10, cysteine, glutathione, selenium, chromium, oleic acid, choline, inositol, asparagines, glutamine, serine, and carnitine. Second, you use selected supplements and nutraceuticals, like those I’ve investigated in this article. Third, you incorporate diet, exercise and weight management. This can help as well with no longer needing to use prescription medications to reduce blood pressure.
Here are the previous parts of this blood pressure series:
What You Need to Understand About Blood Pressure
The Doctors’ Solution for Hypertension
DASH to Lower Your Blood Pressure
Four Minerals to Combat High Blood Pressure
The Protein to Lower Blood Pressure
Two Red Foods That Will Drop Blood Pressure
Can This Sweet Treat Drop Your Blood Pressure?
This Drink Has Interesting Effects on Blood Pressure
The Blood Pressure Solution from the Sea
Two Nutrients That Help Lower Blood Pressure