Probiotics may lower blood pressure

In a review of nine studies involving probiotic consumption in a total of 543 adults with normal and raised blood pressure, researchers from Griffith University in Queensland found that taking probiotics for at least two months was associated with an average 3.56mmHg lowering of systolic blood pressure and an average 2.38mmHg of diastolic blood pressure, compared with people who did not take probiotics.

Overall, the positive effects on diastolic blood pressure were greatest in people with blood pressure equal to or greater than 130/85.

No improvements were observed for either diastolic or systolic readings in two of the studies in which participants consumed the supplements for less than eight weeks.

The bacterial concentration of the probiotic source, which included yoghurts and dietary supplements, was also a factor.

While sources with less than 109 colony-forming-units of bacteria had no observed effect on blood pressure, sources with