Blueberries have long been known as a “superfood” because they contain high levels of antioxidants which help prevent the two leading causes of death in the U.S.: heart disease and cancer.
But a major study shows that they have another important benefit. Blueberries can lower blood pressure as much as prescription drugs. And the effect is almost instant…
They improve blood vessel function right after you eat them.
The Blueberry Blood Pressure Solution
The research was conducted by a team at King’s College London. They recruited 40 subjects. At random, they gave some of the volunteers a daily drink that contained seven ounces (200 grams) of blueberries. They gave the remaining subjects a control drink with no blueberries.
Over a month’s time, the researchers monitored the volunteers in three ways:
- The chemical content of their blood and urine.
- Their blood pressure.
- The flow-mediated dilation (FMD) of their brachial arteries.
This gauges how wide the artery expands when blood flow increases. It’s an important heart disease marker.
These were the two most important findings:
- Within two hours of consuming the blueberry drink, subjects had improved blood vessel function. Their blood vessels were able to open wider, improving blood flow.
- The blueberry group’s systolic (upper number) blood pressure dropped by average of 5 points. That’s comparable to the effect of some blood pressure medications.
Dr. Ana Rodriguez-Mateos was the lead researcher. She said that if the changes in blood vessel function seen in the blueberry group were “sustained for a person’s whole life, it could reduce their risk of developing cardiovascular disease by up to 20%.”
Get on the Blueberry Bandwagon
Other research shows that blueberries can improve your health in many ways:
Diabetes: People who eat blueberries have a 26% lower risk of diabetes.
Brain health: Seniors who eat blueberries show a reduced risk for cognitive decline.
Obesity: Eating blueberries is linked to lower levels of body fat.
It can be difficult and expensive to find fresh blueberries year round.
But frozen blueberries are a good alternative. They actually have more antioxidants than fresh, according to a 2015 study published in the International Journal of Molecular Sciences.
Blueberry supplements are another option. Just a couple capsules are the equivalent of a large quantity of blueberries.
Editor’s Note: There is a heart attack risk factor that is 10 times more dangerous than cholesterol. But mainstream doctors don’t test for it. And statins actually make it worse.