Indication: Blood pressure
Source: Am J Clin Nutr, February 2011;93(2):338-47.
Research: Dietary flavonoids have beneficial effects on blood pressure in intervention settings, but there is limited information on habitual intake and risk of hypertension in population-based studies. Researchers examined the association between habitual flavonoid intake and incident hypertension in a prospective study in men and women. A total of 87,242 women from the Nurses’ Health Study (NHS) II, 46,672 women from the NHS I, and 23,043 men from the Health Professionals Follow-Up Study (HPFS) participated in the study. Total flavonoid and subclass intakes were calculated from semi-quantitative food-frequency questionnaires collected every four years by using an updated and extended USDA database.
Results: During 14 years of follow-up, 29,018 cases of hypertension in women and 5629 cases of hypertension in men were reported. In pooled multivariate-adjusted analyses, participants in the highest quintile of anthocyanin intake (predominantly from blueberries and strawberries) had an 8% reduction in risk of hypertension compared with that for participants in the lowest quintile of anthocyanin intake. Researchers believe anthocyanins and some flavone and flavan-3-ol compounds may contribute to the prevention of hypertension. These vasodilatory properties may result from specific structural similarities (including the B-ring hydroxylation and methyoxylation pattern).