Grape Seed Extract for Lowering Blood Pressure?

September 14, 2011

Results of a meta-analysis reveal significant reductions in blood pressure and heart rate.

In their meta-analysis of grape seed extract and heart health factors, researchers from the University of Connecticut and Yale University say that grape seed extract appears to lower blood pressure and heart rate in human subjects. The work has been published in the Journal of the American Dietetic Association.

Database searches on trials investigating grape seed extract supplementation and heart health factors including blood pressure, heart rate, and cholesterol yielded nine studies (390 subjects) fit for meta-analysis.

Results of the meta-analysis revealed significant reductions in blood pressure (-1.54 mm Hg) and heart rate (-1.42 bpm). These changes may seem small, but lead author Craig Coleman of the University of Connecticut stresses that a little change can go a long way:

 

The level of systolic blood pressure reduction is very modest in comparison to reductions seen with prescription antihypertensive drugs. However, this modest effect may still be noteworthy on a population basis. It has been estimated that every 3 mm Hg reduction in systolic blood pressure could reduce the risk of all-cause mortality by 4%, mortality after stroke by 8% and mortality after coronary artery disease by 5%.