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Nutrition. 2014 Jan;30(1):116-9. doi: 10.1016/j.nut.2013.07.021. Epub 2013 Oct 25.

Effect of buttermilk consumption on blood pressure in moderately hypercholesterolemic men and women.

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STELA Dairy Research Center, Laval University, Quebec, Canada; Institute of Nutrition and Functional Foods, Laval University, Quebec, Canada.



Milk fat globule membrane (MFGM) found in buttermilk is rich in unique bioactive proteins. Several studies suggest that MFGM proteins possess biological activities such as cholesterol-lowering, antiviral, antibacterial, and anticancer properties, but data in humans are lacking. Furthermore, to our knowledge, no study has yet investigated the antihypertensive potential of MFGM proteins from buttermilk. The aim of this study was to investigate the effects of buttermilk consumption on blood pressure and on markers of the renin-angiotensin-aldosterone (RAS) system in humans.


Men and women (N = 34) with plasma low-density lipoprotein cholesterol < 5 mmol/L and normal blood pressure (< 140 mm Hg) were recruited in this randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled, crossover study. Their diets were supplemented with 45 g/d of buttermilk and with 45 g/d of a macro-/micronutrient-matched placebo in random order (4 wk for each diet).


Buttermilk consumption significantly reduced systolic blood pressure (-2.6 mm Hg; P = 0.009), mean arterial blood pressure (-1.7 mm Hg; P = 0.015), and plasma levels of the angiotensin I-converting enzyme (-10.9%; P = 0.003) compared with the placebo, but had no effect on plasma concentrations of angiotensin II and aldosterone.


Short-term buttermilk consumption reduces blood pressure in normotensive individuals.


Blood pressure; Buttermilk bioactive peptides; Milk fat globule membrane; Renin–angiotensin–aldosterone system

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