Fat Free Milk, with Calcium, Vitamin D Foods Reduces High Blood Pressure Risk for Older Women
Women who drank more fat free milk and had higher intakes of calcium and vitamin D from foods, and not supplements, tended to have a lower risk for developing hypertension or high blood pressure, according to a new study published in the American Heart Association journal, Hypertension.
After examining the diets of nearly 30,000 middle-aged and older women, Harvard researchers found that women who consumed more low-fat milk and milk products and had diets higher in calcium and vitamin D from foods were better protected against high blood pressure.
When the researchers investigated the benefits of milk specifically, they found women who drank two or more servings of fat free milk each day reduced their risk for high blood pressure by up to10 percent compared to those who drank fat free milk less than once a month.
But it has to be “fat free” milk and the calcium and vitamin D cannot come from supplements, say the researchers.
One in three American adults has high blood pressure, and an increasing number of women are living with undiagnosed hypertension, according to a second study published in the journal Circulation.
Older Women May Prevent Some Weight Gain by taking Calcium Plus Vitamin D
May stimulate the breakdown of fat cells and suppress the development of new ones
May 14, 2007 - Postmenopausal women, age 50 to 79 in this study, who take calcium and vitamin D supplements may gain less weight than those who do not, although the overall effect is small, according to a report in the May 14 issue of Archives of Internal Medicine, one of the JAMA/Archives journals. The benefit is greater in those who had not previously been getting the daily recommended amount of calcium.
The last decade has seen significant increases in uncontrolled high blood pressure for women across the nation, a condition that puts them at serious risk for cardiovascular disease, stroke and even kidney failure.
Yet despite a vast body of research linking diet changes to blood pressure control, most Americans are still missing the mark on their diets.
According to new research published in the Archives of Internal Medicine, Americans are ignoring the DASH (Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension) Diet, the therapeutic eating plan recommended by the National Heart Lung and Blood Institute that emphasizes low-fat dairy, fruits and vegetables to help reduce blood pressure levels.
Previous research has linked the DASH diet and lowfat or fat free milk to blood pressure benefits – one reason why the U.S. Dietary Guidelines for Americans recommend drinking three glasses of lowfat or fat free milk each day. Milk provides nine essential nutrients, including calcium, vitamin A, vitamin D, protein and potassium.