Firm introduces beetroot juice to beat hypertension
A UNITED Kingdom (UK) company, James White Drinks in partnership with a Nigerian firm, Vizuri Limited, have introduced organic beetroot liquid dietary supplement or rather beetroot juice in a bottle, BEET IT, to beat rising cases of hypertension and its associated complications.
Chief Executive Officer of Vizuri Limited Surulere, Lagos, Olumide Onabolu, who was at The Guardian said: “The original Beet It is a blend of 90 per cent beetroot and 10 per cent apple. Beet It is used by nearly 200 universities and research institutes around the world for research into the benefits of dietary nitrate.
“It is a natural source of dietary nitrate. According to American Heart Association, dietary nitrate provides sustained blood pressure lowering in hypertensive patients. Beetroot juice is packed full of natural dietary nitrate. But drinking beetroot juice may turn your urine pink; this is perfectly normal.”
The Guardian had reported that eating foods rich in leafy vegetables, beetroot, fruit, nuts and legumes reduce the risk of heart failure and depression.
A study had demonstrated how muscle power improves in patients with heart failure when they adopt a diet high in nitrates – found in abundance in beetroot juice.
Researchers from Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis, MO, United States, publishing in the journal Circulation: Heart Failure, wanted to know if patients with heart failure could get the kind of benefits athletes find in beet juice.
This study builds on the team’s previous work that suggests using dietary nitrates improves muscle performance in the world of elite sport.
Nitrates are the active ingredient in beet juice, as well as spinach and other leafy vegetables, including arugula and celery.
During exercise, these nitrates are converted into nitric oxide, with various beneficial effects on blood pressure and cardiovascular health. The benefits are most commonly found during aerobic exercise – that is, when breathing is increased to bring more oxygen into the body, for example, in walking, cycling or swimming.
The researchers hypothesized that heart failure patients may benefit in similar ways to athletes, since heart failure is the gradual loss of pumping capacity. When the heart is weak, fatigue and shortness of breath follow, making everyday activity difficult.
Researchers said the benefits of the drink come from the fact it contains the molecule nitrate.
When converted in the body, nitrate can dilate the blood vessels and increase blood flow, both important factors for exercise performance.
Nitrate also triggers a series of chemical reactions in the blood, which can increase oxygen in areas of the body which are specifically lacking supply.
As well as beetroot, high concentrations of nitrate are also found in celery, cabbage and other leafy green vegetables such as spinach and some lettuce.
As part of the study, men who drank beetroot juice for 14 days had lower blood pressure and more dilated blood vessels when they were exercising and when they were resting.
Blood vessels also dilated more easily and the heart consumed less oxygen when they were working out.
Writing in the journal American Journal of Physiology-Regulatory, Integrative and Comparative Physiology, the researchers said: ‘Exercise can be performed at a given workload for a longer period of time before the onset of fatigue.’
Another paper, published in the journal Hypertension, found drinking one cup of beetroot juice a day led to a seven per cent drop in blood pressure readings in people with high blood pressure.
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