Flavonoids (Soy)High Blood Pressure

Effect of dietary protein on blood pressure levels

There’s an inverse association between dietary protein intake and blood pressure.

How much? Researchers at Tulane University School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine, in New Orleans, Louisiana, compared the effects of soy protein and milk protein to carbohydrate supplementation in healthy adults.

First, the details.

  • 352 adults with prehypertension or stage 1 hypertension were assigned to a treatment group for 8 weeks.
    • Take 40 grams per day of soy protein, milk protein, or carbohydrate supplementation each for 8 weeks in a random order — crossover design.
      • Prehypertension: Blood pressure is elevated above normal, but not high enough to be diagnostic of high blood pressure.
      • Stage 1 hypertension: Systolic pressure between 140 to 159 mmHg and diastolic pressure from 90 to 99 mmHg.
  • Blood pressure was measured at the start and end of the study.

And, the results.

  • Compared with carbohydrate, soy and milk proteins were significantly associated with -2 mmHg and -2.3 mmHg changes in systolic blood pressure, respectively.
  • Changes in diastolic blood pressure were not significant.
  • There was no significant difference in the blood pressure reductions achieved between soy or milk protein supplementation.

The bottom line?

In these patients, both soy and milk protein intake reduced systolic blood pressure compared with a high-glycemic-index refined carbohydrate.

The authors concluded, “These findings suggest that partially replacing carbohydrate with soy or milk protein might be an important component of nutrition intervention strategies for the prevention and treatment of hypertension.”

It’s reasonable to consider what you can do to change the amounts of carbs vs milk and soy protein in your diet.

7/19/11 21:24 JR

Hi, I’m JR

John Russo, Jr., PharmD, is president of The MedCom Resource, Inc. Previously, he was senior vice president of medical communications at www.Vicus.com, a complementary and alternative medicine website.