Two Glasses of This a Day Can Improve Your Heart Health, Study Finds

Lowering your blood pressure has never been easier.

Having high blood pressure can be stressful under the best of circumstances, and the coronavirus crisis is definitely not that. Being in good health and managing any underlying conditions is essential to staying healthy right now, and as the CDC warns, hypertension in particular can increase your risk of a severe COVID infection. Luckily, one study recently published in the European Journal of Nutrition found that there's a hassle-free (and tasty!) way to lower your blood pressure into a healthier range in just 12 weeks: drinking two glasses of orange juice per day.

According to the study, orange juice contains a naturally occurring flavonoid called hesperidin, which acts as an antioxidant in the body by protecting against free radicals. One hundred percent orange juice naturally contains 690 milligrams of hesperidin per liter, and hesperidin-enriched juice contains roughly double that amount.

The researchers found that, over the course of 12 weeks, both types effectively lowered systolic blood pressure in people with stage one hypertension. After the 12-week period the researchers noted that, compared with the control group, the OJ-drinking group had lower levels of blood homocysteine (a biomarker of heart disease) and uric acid (a biomarker for arterial stiffness and hypertension).

Given that hypertension impacts half of all adults in the United States, this simple health strategy comes as welcome news. While most cases of high blood pressure will require medication, introducing twice daily glasses of 100 percent orange juice to your diet could be a good early intervention measure for those with mild cases.

Along with other lifestyle changes such as staying active, not smoking, and keeping a healthy diet, this might just help you avoid the need for medication down the line. And for tips on keeping a healthy heart, check out What Your Tongue Could Tell You About Your Heart Health.

Lauren Gray
Lauren Gray is a New York-based writer, editor, and consultant. Read more
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