Residing in the high blood pressure category puts you at significant risk of heart attacks, strokes, dementia, and aneurysms. You can, however, lower your blood pressure reading and reduce your risk of disease by simply switching on the kettle and sipping on a delicious warm beverage.
Drinking hibiscus tea lowered blood pressure in a group of pre-hypertensive and mildly hypertensive adults, according to a report by nutrition scientist Diane McKay at the American Heart Association.
In the clinical trial, McKay tested 65 volunteers, aged 30 to 70 years, whose systolic blood pressure was 120 to 150 mm Hg and whose diastolic blood pressure was 95 mm Hg or less at the start of the study.
Blood pressure readings of 120 over 80 or greater are considered a risk factor for heart disease, stroke and kidney disease.
For six weeks, about half the group was randomly selected to drink three cups of hibiscus tea daily.
The others drank a placebo beverage containing artificial hibiscus flavouring and colour.
All participants were advised to follow their usual diet and maintain their normal level of activity.
Before the start of the study, blood pressure was measured twice, one week apart, and at weekly intervals thereafter.
The findings show that the volunteers who drank hibiscus tea had a 7.2-point drop in their systolic blood pressure, compared to a 1.3-point drop in the volunteers who drank the placebo beverage.
Another study published in the Journal of Advanced Pharmaceutical Technology and Research investigated the antihypertensive effect of hibiscus tea on stage one hypertension.
The patients were divided into two groups. The control and case group received the same lifestyle and dietary advice for controlling blood pressure.
The case group received two standard cups of hibiscus tea every morning for one month.
The blood pressure of both groups was documented at the start of the study and at the end of the study.
There was a significant reduction in systolic blood pressure in both groups, but the mean reduction in systolic and diastolic blood pressure was significantly higher in the hibiscus tea group.
Certain dietary items have proven particularly adept at lowering hypertension and one that has been singled out in research is hibiscus tea.
Hibiscus tea is an herbal tea that’s made by steeping parts of the hibiscus plant in boiling water.
Other health advantages from drinking the tea include boosting the immune system and preventing cell damage.
Therefore, drinking hibiscus tea not only helps to lower blood pressure but also helps to reduce the risk of heart disease, diabetes and cancer.
Other drinks to lower your reading include:
- Tomato juice
- Beetroot juice
- Prune juice
- Pomegranate juice
- Skim milk.