Beetroot 'may cut blood pressure'

Drinking 500ml of beetroot juice a day can significantly reduce blood pressure, UK research suggests.

The key beneficial ingredient appears to be nitrate, which is also found in green, leafy vegetables. The researchers found that in healthy volunteers blood pressure was reduced within an hour of drinking the juice.

The study, by Barts and the London School of Medicine and the Peninsula Medical School, could suggest a low-cost way to treat hypertension. Previously the protective effects of vegetable-rich diets have been attributed to their antioxidant vitamin content.

While it took less than an hour to note a reduction in blood pressure in the beetroot juice tests, it was more pronounced after three to four hours and a degree of reduction continued to be observed for up to 24 hours, the report published on the online journal Hypertension said.

Source - BBC

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