Protein and High Blood Pressure: Time for More Legumes, Less Lisinopril?

A new study done by Boston University concludes that people who consume more protein (animal or plant source) reduce their risk for developing high blood pressure. This insight into health consequences of proper nutrition could be useful if you have clients who are coping with high blood pressure.The researchers tracked 1,361 people for over 11 years. The test subjects were middle-aged, both men and women, and there was a mix of normal weight and overweight individuals. Regardless of gender or weight, the results were about the same: the folks that reported a higher amount of protein in their diet had a 40% less chance of developing high blood pressure than the folks who ate less protein.

How much protein makes the difference?

The high protein group consumed approximately 102 grams/day while the low protein group was eating only about 58 grams/day.

A high-five for high-fiber

They also discovered that within the high protein consumption group, those that ate a high fiber diet saw an even greater reduction in their risk for developing hypertension – a whopping 59% lower risk (19% more than the high protein diet alone).

The study authors have various hypotheses as to exactly how protein affects blood pressure, and you can see the study results here.

There’s probably more research needed, but this could be helpful news for clients who are battling hypertension.