A recent study conducted on mice suggests that two strains of probiotics found in foods like yogurt and cheese may have potential benefits in lowering high blood pressure. Hypertension, or high blood pressure, affects nearly half of adults in the United States and is associated with an increased risk of heart issues. The study, which had a small sample size of only 29 mice, identified the probiotic strains Bifidobacterium lactis and Lactobacillus rhamnosus as potentially helpful in reducing blood pressure.
However, experts caution that more research is needed to determine if these findings can be applied to humans. The study's small sample size and focus on mice limit its generalizability. While previous research has also suggested a possible link between probiotics and blood pressure reduction, the evidence is still preliminary.
It is essential to note that hypertension carries significant health risks, including heart attack, stroke, and kidney disease. Lifestyle modifications and medications are typically recommended for managing and lowering blood pressure. These include maintaining a healthy weight, quitting smoking, regular exercise, stress management, and reducing salt intake.
While the study on probiotics and blood pressure is intriguing, experts emphasize the need for further research before drawing definitive conclusions or making recommendations. Larger clinical trials involving humans are necessary to determine if the protective benefits observed in mice can be replicated in humans.
In the meantime, individuals with hypertension should focus on proven strategies for managing their blood pressure, such as following a low-sodium diet, managing stress, and monitoring their blood pressure regularly. It is always advisable to consult with a healthcare professional before considering any new therapies or treatments.
Overall, while the potential link between probiotics and blood pressure reduction is an area of interest, more research is needed to establish a conclusive connection and determine the practical implications for hypertension treatment.