Healthy Living

High Blood Pressure Solution: Eating Walnuts Lowers The Risk

A new study suggests that following a diet that is low in saturated fats and adding walnuts to the equation help reduce the risk of cardiovascular diseases by lowering blood pressure. Researchers claimed that the study was the first of its kind to assess how walnuts affect the cardiovascular system.

The research published in the Journal of the American Heart Association found that the alpha-linolenic acid (ALA) in walnuts lowers blood pressure. Their goal was to assess the components of the plant-based omega-3 and some of the walnut contents such as polyphenols in reducing the risk of cardiovascular diseases caused by high blood pressure. They were also driven to find favorable results since cardiovascular disease causes the most deaths among adults amounting to 840,000 in the United States last 2016.

They assessed 45 30- to 65-year-old participants who were overweight or suffering from obesity. The participants underwent a run-in diet which only contained a 12 percent calorie content in two weeks before starting the study. They were then categorized into three diet groups. One included whole walnuts while the two groups had none but replaced the same amount of ALA with polyunsaturated fatty acids from other ingredients while the other substituted ALA with oleic acid.

All participants had lower blood pressure. Thus, the researchers concluded that replacing saturated fat with unsaturated ones contained in walnuts and other vegetable oils decreased the risk of cardiovascular diseases that result from lower blood pressure.

According to Medical News Daily, hypertension, otherwise referred to as high blood pressure, increases the risk of cardiovascular diseases that lead to stroke or even death. A healthy person’s normal blood pressure is at 120 over 80 mm of mercury (mmHg). Those with hypertension are at 130 over 80 mmHg.

The common causes of hypertension are stress and underlying conditions such as kidney disease. The highly recommended treatment of lowering blood pressure is following a healthy diet. The study found that eating walnuts helps in achieving this goal. Furthermore, avoiding stress and refraining from following unhealthy habits such as smoking also reduces your risk of developing hypertension. In fact, giving up smoking helps you reduce the risk of respiratory issues as well.