Vitamin C and High Blood Pressure By Mrs Vera West

     Again, the usual disclaimer for these sorts of articles, that this is not medical advise in any way, but journalistic reporting on news sources, for health problems see a qualified practitioner etc. etc. That said, there are reports in the literature that vitamin C lowers blood pressure and has benefits to the cardiovascular system, claims made since at least 1954 when Noble Prize winner biochemist Linus Pauling first began to make his claims about the health benefits of vitamin C. 

“Our research suggests a modest blood pressure lowering effect with vitamin C supplementation, but before we can recommend supplements as a treatment for high blood pressure, we really need more research to understand the implications of taking them,” says Edgar “Pete” R. Miller III, M.D., Ph.D., an associate professor in the division of general internal medicine at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine and leader of the study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition. Miller and his colleagues reviewed and analyzed data from 29 randomized, controlled, previously published clinical trials that reported systolic and/or diastolic blood pressure values and also compared vitamin C intake to a placebo.

What they found is that taking an average of 500 milligrams of vitamin C daily — about five times the recommended daily requirement — reduced blood pressure by 3.84 millimeters of mercury in the short term. Among those diagnosed with hypertension, the drop was nearly 5 millimeters of mercury. By comparison, Miller says, patients who take blood pressure medication such as ACE inhibitors or diuretics (so-called “water pills”) can expect a roughly 10 millimeter of mercury reduction in blood pressure. Five hundred milligrams of vitamin C is the amount in about six cups of orange juice. The recommended daily intake of vitamin C for adults is 90 milligrams.”

     There are other informative discussions of the benefits of vitamin C:

     The reductions may not be enough for many people, so don’t contemplate going off any medication without medical advice that you can trust. Get a second opinion if necessary, or a third. The emerging rational strategy for optimal health seems to be life style control, using a variety of foods and exercise, within the framework of conventional medicine. In other words, use every means at your disposal to maximise your health benefits. Most importantly, people need to be proactive about health and actually start thinking about what they put into their bodies. After all, the human body is the temple of the Holy Spirit, and you are not your own: 1 Corinthians 6:19.



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