Flaxseed powder successfully lowers blood pressure in patients with damaged blood vessels

December 13, 2012

Peripheral arterial disease is a common circulatory problem in which narrowed arteries, usually in your legs, reduce blood flow to your limbs. If you develop peripheral arterial disease (PAD), you don't receive enough blood flow to keep up with muscle needs. This causes symptoms, most notably leg pain when walking (intermittent claudication). PAD is also likely to be a sign of a more widespread accumulation of fatty deposits in your arteries (atherosclerosis). This condition may be reducing blood flow to your heart and brain, as well as your legs. About 4 million Americans over the age of 55 have PAD and about 1 out of 10 Americans over the age of 65 have PAD. If you have PAD quitting smoking, exercising and eating a healthy diet are extremely important for treatment.

In this study Doctors from the Canadian Centre for Agri-Food Research in Health and Medicine at St. Boniface Hospital gave 110 patients with PAD 30 grams of flaxseed per day for one year or placebo in a random manner. The flaxseed was baked into foods such as muffins and those on placebo got similar foods minus the flaxseed. The flaxseed gave a startlingly good reduction in blood pressure to the patients with elevated blood pressure compared to placebo. Systolic pressure dropped 15 mmHg, In general in the PAD patients systolic pressure dropped 10 mmHg and diastolic improved by 7 mmHg. The research was presented at the American Heart Association Sessions 2012 in November. November