RODALE NEWS, EMMAUS, PA—We all know eating less salt is vital in mowing down high blood pressure levels. But a recent study suggests adding whole grains to your diet can put a significant dent in your blood pressure readings, too.
THE DETAILS: The study, first published online in the Journal of Clinical Nutrition, included about 200 middle-aged study participants who were either assigned to a regular diet, one including three servings of whole wheat foods a day, or one including two servings of oats and one of whole wheat, over a 12-week period. Researchers noticed that those who ate the higher whole grains diet enjoyed a 6-mmHG reduction in systolic blood pressure, which researchers say could reduce coronary artery disease by 15 percent and the risk of stroke by 25 percent.
WHAT IT MEANS: While there doesn't seem to be anything inherently exciting about oats, they are no joke. And neither are the other whole grains. A study published in the journal Circulation found that diabetic women who at the most bran, a component of whole wheat, enjoyed a 35 percent lower risk of cardiovascular death and a nearly 30 percent risk of death from any cause. The fact that they can also reduce blood pressure is just another reason to work more 100 percent whole wheat, oats, barley, and other grains into your daily routine.