High blood pressure: Doctor explains benefits of hibiscus tea
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Hypertension is diagnosed when the pressure exerted against the arterial walls surpasses a certain threshold. At this point, blood clots can form and become lodged in the brain, triggering a stroke. A number of studies have set out to establish which teas have lowering effects on the condition. Findings have shown that a couple of herbal teas may cause an acute increase in blood pressure shortly after intake.
While tea consumption is widely recognised as an aid to good health, some studies have shown that certain brews could cause transient increases in blood pressure, due primarily to their caffeine concentrations.
In an early study published in the journal Hypertension, researchers observed acute increases in blood pressure shortly after intake.
They said: “An acute pressor response to caffeine was observed. Relative to caffeine, there were further acute increases in systolic and diastolic blood pressure at 30 minutes among those drinking green tea and black tea.
“Contrary to our initial hypothesis, tea ingestion caused larger acute increases in blood pressure than caffeine alone.
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“However, any acute effect of tea on blood pressure did not translate into significant alterations in ambulatory blood pressure during regular tea consumption.”
The researchers noted that changes in blood pressure were not significant within 60 minutes of ingestion.
The findings suggest both beverages could be beneficial for individuals with low blood pressure, according to the health body Rxlist.
It states: “Drinking green tea might help increase blood pressure in elderly people who have low blood pressure after eating.
“The caffeine in green tea might increase blood pressure in people with high blood pressure.
“However, this does not seem to occur in people who regularly drink green tea or other products that contain caffeine.”
Indeed, evidence around the effects of green tea on blood pressure is conflicting, as prior studies have highlighted lowering effects after prolonged use of green tea.
Research conducted on Chinese populations has shown that regular consumption of green and Oolong tea could significantly lower the risk of hypertension.
In fact, the findings of the study found that drinking two and a half cups of tea per day slashed the risk of high blood pressure by a staggering 65 percent.
The polyphenols in green tea, which are responsible for many of the beverage’s benefits, are powerful antioxidants known to manage hypertension over time.
How to lower blood pressure
According to the NHS “high blood pressure can often be prevented by eating healthily, maintaining a healthy weight, taking regular exercise, drinking alcohol in moderation and not smoking”.
Regular exercise can help knock 10 points off a blood pressure reading, as well as prevent the onset of hypertension.
Diets that comprise high volumes of fruits, vegetables, wholegrain, poultry, fish and nuts, are also beneficial for managing the condition.
Some vegetables contain higher levels of potassium, which is beneficial for blood pressure control because it increases the amount of sodium excreted in the urine.
Too much salt, which contains high levels of sodium, causes the body to hold extra water, causing blood pressure to hike.
What’s more, mental and emotional stress are both recognised as contributors to high blood pressure, so deep breathing is encouraged to manage this.
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