Skip to comments.Hibiscus Tea Is Found to Lower Blood Pressure
Posted on 01/24/2009 1:02:20 AM PST by neverdem
NEW ORLEANS Quaffing three cups of hibiscus tea daily for 6 weeks resulted in a mean 7.2-mm Hg reduction in systolic blood pressure in mildly hypertensive or prehypertensive adults in a randomized, double-blind placebo-controlled trial.
This suggests that regularly incorporating hibiscus tea into the diet may help control blood pressure in people at risk of developing hypertension, Diane L. McKay, Ph.D., said at the annual scientific sessions of the American Heart Association.
The public health implications of a blood pressure reduction of this magnitude, if extended to a large population, could be profound. According to the National High Blood Pressure Education Program Coordinating Committee, a mere 3-mm Hg reduction in systolic blood pressure (SBP) would reduce the relative risk of death due to stroke by 8%, due to coronary artery disease by 5%, and all-cause mortality by 4% (JAMA 2002;288: 1882-8), said Dr. McKay, of the Jean Mayer USDA Human Nutrition Research Center on Aging at Tufts University, Boston.
She reported on 65 prehypertensive or mildly hypertensive adults who took part in a 6-week double-blind study in which they consumed three 8-ounce cups of hibiscus tea daily or a placebo beverage similar in color and taste.
Mean SBP dropped by 7.2 mm Hg in the herbal tea group from a baseline of 129.4 mm Hg, compared with a 1.3-mm Hg decline in the control group. Diastolic blood pressure (DBP) fell by a mean of 3.1 mm Hg from a baseline of 78. 9 mm Hg and mean arterial pressure dropped by 4.5 mm Hg from 95.7 mm Hg at enrollment, although neither of these changes achieved statistical significance.
However, the tea's antihypertensive effect increased with higher baseline blood pressure. In the half of subjects whose SBP exceeded 129 mm Hg, mean SBP reduction after 6 weeks of hibiscus tea consumption was 13.2 mm Hg, and the reductions of 6.4 mm Hg in DBP and 8.7 mm Hg in mean arterial pressure were also statistically significant.
The intervention had no side effects or downsides, said Dr. McKay.
Dr. Robert H. Eckel observed that the blood pressure reduction seen with hibiscus tea in this trial is equal to the typical effect of a single antihypertensive medication.
But although the notion of the tea as a nutraceutical for blood pressure lowering is intriguing, a larger confirmatory study with longer follow-up is needed, said Dr. Eckel, past president of the AHA and professor of medicine, physiology, and biophysics, and program director of the adult general clinical research center at the University of Colorado, Denver.
Dr. McKay and coworkers conducted their randomized trial because earlier animal studies suggested Hibiscus sabdariffa L. has antihypertensive and antiatherosclerotic effects. Hibiscus contains flavinoids and phenolic acids which have potent antioxidant properties. The study was supported by the Agricultural Research Service of the U.S. Department of Agriculture and by Celestial Seasonings.
To view a video interview of Dr. McKay, go to http://www.youtube.com/familypracticenews.
Does anyone here already quaff hybiscus tea on a regular basis? Have you noticed any difference from it — good or bad? Report! :)
I use hibiscus in herb formulas - it’s tasty when sweetened, it comes in powder form which I use, also the whole flower and cut and sifted pieces. It is a tropical flower, not the pretty kind you see in Hawaii, it’s a smaller variety. It makes a beautiful ruby color tea which can also be drunk cool in the summer.
It is very refrigerant - cooling for summer or fevers or just hot symptoms, good for mental “cooling” as well, infections, over heated blood (a CHinese and Ayurvedic description), good for other organs and systems such as the liver and female system.
It goes very well with some fruit juices such as adding a bit of lemon or lime juice. It’s much cheaper to buy it in bulk by the pound.
Should have added - I don’t have high blood pressure so I can’t comment on that part. But I hate the heat and do drink it a lot in the summer and it definitely helps to cool the body. It also works well combined with peppermint. Hibiscus has a pleasantly fruity sour taste, I prefer it sweetened.
Bookmark to answer later! This a great tea!
This is purely empirical, anecdotal evidence, so take it FWIW, but after a year of trying to get my wife’s BP back to normal levels, guess what seemed to do it?
Fish oil, and vitamin supplements with manganese, calcium, molybdenum, and chromium.
YMMV, and “kids, don’t try this at home...”
Yes, and eating olive oil will add half a century to your life.
The study was supported by the Agricultural Research Service of the U.S. Department of Agriculture and by Celestial Seasonings.
Very very old news in China.
You are right on the money about fish oil.
My Chinese Herbal Doc uses this all the time in my “tonics.” I no longer have to take my BP meds. BP was 120/79 yesterday.
Thanks for posting!
True Brew is made in Plano and sold in stores all over Texas. You can order online but shipping makes it kind of expensive.
IMPORTANT NOTE: THERE ARE OVER 200 VARIETIES OF HIBISCUS. Do not assume they are all the same. They aren’t.
I would just about give anything to get off of the HBP meds I've been on. For some reason, they either put me to sleep, affect my mental acuity or give me dizzy spells.
Do you have any links to where I can get more information on this?
Does this tea have caffine or sugar?
Some of the herb teas by Celestial Seasonings at your supermarket use hibiscus. Look for teas that are reddish and read the labels, as the ingredients are listed in order of composition.
Besides, if this study gets much press, the market will respond with high hibiscus content teas in short order. Remember when pomegrante juice was touted as a potential Alzheimer's inhibitor a few years ago? Its easy to find pomegrante juice on the shelves now, but I'd just about never seen it in the supermarket before then.
Caffeine no. Sugar?? Check the website that is linked in my original post. Or buy the Hibiscus tea bags and make it however you like it. Cheaper that way too.
We make a hibiscus drink on a regular basis. The flowers are bought at the market, boiled in water and strained. Add sugar and we have jamaica drink.
I don’t know if it’s related, but my BP is very low. The doc has to measure twice sometimes to make sure it’s not a erroneous reading.
But...to lower blood pressure, how about...
1. Being completely financialy independant,
2. Possessing no genetic, serious illnesses,
3. Having a truthful, bright, vivacious, true, independant woman with you for the rest of your life,
4. performing moderate, constant exercise, and...
4. Having an endless source of excellent reading material.
OK...I've got number 4...kinda; and my local library fills the bill on number 5. #2 is shot...ah well.
I will never, ever get to number 1
...and number 3 does not exist...at least on this planet.
That is excellent! It probably works much better in formula than by itself. The Chinese have centuries of experience developing formulas. On the other hand some of the best ones have remained unchanged for centuries. The main thing is they work and are safe.
I’m lucky! My Doc is a Master! Ran an herbal hospital outside Shanghai for many years before emigrating. I no longer have to take Metformin for Type 2, nor Atenolol for BP. Diet also played a large part. I managed to lose(loose!) 50 pounds. I no longer have to walk with a cane. And that bad knee was fixed by the herbs 5 years before I lost the extra weight, although I’m sure the weight “loose” helps in the looong run. But, ya gotta find a good, experienced herbalist, preferably from the Mainland, not Taiwan or Hong Kong.
There are some very good westerners trained in TCM. One of his friends trained in it then went on to become a western doctor and then went into pharmaceutical research at Johns Hopkins. A brilliant man who still uses TCM for family and friends before using anything else.
My friend has cured several people I know of from Type 2 diabetes using a simple formula and diet changes. Their doctors are always stunned but tests show them to be completely clear. As you must well know it requires discipline on the patient's part. But your results speak to the value of that.
Here’s an interesting story: My Wife’s Mom in Shanghai had a stroke. She was treated with herbs. The Doctor injected some sort of Ginseng extract into certain acupoints. She recovered. But what’s interesting is that she also regained her hearing!
Last I knew, my blood pressure is ok, but thought I'd try some anyway.
He has also described a very unusual needling technique for epileptic seizures. He wouldn't perform it or even have the special needle required to perform it. I'm sure only a very small number of practitioners would. Your guy sounds like one although he may have his own preferred methods. Ask him about the "golden needle" technique if you have that kind of rapport.