Can Soy Consumption Lower Blood Pressure?

April 7, 2011

A meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials on soy diets suggests that soy consumption may lower blood pressure in subjects with normal blood pressure and more so in subjects with high blood pressure.

A meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials on soy diets suggests that soy consumption may lower blood pressure in subjects with normal blood pressure and more so in subjects with high blood pressure.

Published in the British Journal of Nutrition, the meta-analysis used 27 randomized controlled trials published through April 2010 on soy diets versus control diets. The analyses were conducted by academic researchers from Soochow University and Nantong University (China) and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

Data compiled from the 27 trials showed mean decreases of 2.21 mmHg for systolic blood pressure (pressure when the heart is contracting) and 1.44 mmHg for diastolic blood pressure (pressure when the heart is relaxed) with soy diets when compared to control diets.

Hypertensive subjects experienced greater reductions in blood pressure than normotensive subjects. Blood pressure reductions with soy diet were also more pronounced in trials using carbohydrates (but not milk products) as the control diet.

The American Heart Association states that optimal blood pressure for adults is between 80 and 120 mmHg.