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Free Radic Biol Med. 2014 Dec;77:353-62. doi: 10.1016/j.freeradbiomed.2014.09.021. Epub 2014 Sep 28.

Short-term effects of nitrate-rich green leafy vegetables on blood pressure and arterial stiffness in individuals with high-normal blood pressure.

Author information

1
School of Medicine and Pharmacology, University of Western Australia, Perth, WA 6000, Australia. Electronic address: cbondonno@meddent.uwa.edu.au.
2
School of Medicine and Pharmacology, University of Western Australia, Perth, WA 6000, Australia.
3
School of Plant Biology, University of Western Australia, Perth, WA 6000, Australia.
4
College of Food Engineering and Nutritional Science, Shaanxi Normal University, Xi'an, China; Department of Agriculture and Food Western Australia, South Perth, WA, Australia.
5
Flinders Centre for Epidemiology and Biostatistics, Flinders University, Adelaide, SA, Australia.

Abstract

Evidence for a beneficial effect of dietary nitrate, through the nitrate-nitrite-NO pathway, on measures of cardiovascular function in healthy individuals is accumulating. It is less clear whether increased dietary nitrate intake from green leafy vegetables would have similar beneficial vascular effects in those at increased risk of developing hypertension. Our aim was to assess the effects of short-term regular consumption of increased nitrate from green leafy vegetables on blood pressure and arterial stiffness in individuals with high-normal blood pressure. Thirty-eight men and women ages 30-70 years with systolic blood pressure 120 to 139 mm Hg were recruited to a randomized controlled crossover trial. The effects of a 7-day high-nitrate diet intervention (increased nitrate intake by at least 300 mg/day from green leafy vegetables) were compared to a 7-day low-nitrate diet intervention. Outcome measures included pre- and postintervention salivary and plasma nitrate and nitrite concentrations; ambulatory, home, and office blood pressure; augmentation index; and carotid-femoral pulse wave velocity. The high-nitrate diet intervention resulted in at least a fourfold increase in salivary and plasma nitrate and nitrite (P<0.001). Ambulatory, home, and office blood pressure and arterial stiffness were not different between the high-nitrate diet and the low-nitrate diet. Increasing dietary nitrate intake in those with high-normal blood pressure and at increased risk of hypertension may not be an effective short-term strategy to lower blood pressure.

KEYWORDS:

Arterial stiffness; Blood pressure; Free radicals; Green leafy vegetables; Nitrate

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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