High blood pressure is hardly noticeable, except for the health complications that can arise from it. Keep your blood pressure in check. Which cheese could help to lower your reading?
Published in the Journal of Hypertension, researchers from the Guglielmo da Saliceto Hospital, in Italy, investigated the link between cheese and hypertension.
Hypertension is the medical term to describe high blood pressure, which is 140/90mmHg or higher.
The first number represents the systolic blood pressure – the highest amount of blood pressure exerted.
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And the second number represents the diastolic blood pressure – the lowest amount of blood pressure exerted.
The study observed 30 hypertensive adults over a two-month period.
During this time, the participants were given either a placebo or an ounce of Grana Padano cheese every day.
Their blood pressure was also monitored throughout the study.
Data reveals that those who consumed Grana Padano cheese experienced between 7-8mmHg reduction in systolic blood pressure.
And they also had a 5-7mmHg drop in diastolic blood pressure. This means those who ate the cheese had an overall lower blood pressure reading.
No changes in blood sugar, BMI (body mass index) or blood lipids were noted.
The research team believes the reduction in blood pressure readings is linked to a particular amino acid found in the cheese.
Dr Giuseppe Crippa observed: “The effects are similar to what you would expect with antihypertensive medications.”
He added: “Adding a little Grana Padano to a healthy diet may provide clinically significant blood pressure lowering benefits.”
Further research is planned to discover whether the age of the cheese has any influence on the levels of the beneficial amino acid.
Grana Padano cheese
The origin of Grana Padano dates back to the Cistercian monks of the Chiaravalle Abbey, northern Italy.
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The hard, full-bodied cheese takes a minimum of nine months to mature.
It has a mild, nutty flavour and flaky texture, and the cheese can be eaten on its own or accompanied with other dishes.
The American Heart Association states that “by adopting a heart-healthy lifestyle, you can reduce high blood pressure”.
The charity suggests to eat a well-balanced diet that is low in salt.
This means indulging in fruits, vegetables, whole grain, nuts and legumes.
With variety being the key factor in gaining various nutrients and minerals.
It also means limiting saturated and trans fats, salt, red meat and sweets.
Trans fats can be found in frozen pizzas, frozen pies, and fried fast foods.
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