Vitamin C Helps Lower Blood Pressure
Scientists at Johns Hopkins recently performed a meta-analysis of vitamin C studies relating to blood pressure going back to 1966. After analyzing data from 29 different clinical trials, they found that over an eight-week period, study participants who took around 500 mg of vitamin C per day experienced an average drop in systolic blood pressure (the top number) of nearly 4 points, and diastolic pressure (the bottom number) of about 1.5 points. And the results were slightly better among participants who had high blood pressure to begin with-their systolic numbers dropped by nearly 5 points.
Given the multitude of benefits of vitamin C and the fact that roughly one in three US adults has high blood pressure, this inexpensive and utterly harmless intervention should be a mainstream recommendation. As one study author pointed out, “[I]f the entire US population lowered blood pressure by 3 [points], there would be a lot fewer strokes.” But don’t expect the Institute of Medicine to change its tune any time soon-that broken record is still advising women and men to get a paltry 75 mg and 90 mg of vitamin C per day, respectively. I stand by my longtime recommendation that everyone take a daily multinutrient that contains 500-1,000 mg of vitamin C.