The newly developed dietary supplement that mimics calorie restriction can help fight hypertension and improve arterial health, researchers report. The study, albeit small, demonstrated that the supplement intake is associated with a reduction in diastolic pressure of 10 points, meaning a 25% heart attack risk reduction.
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Calorie restriction intake can bring multiple health benefits, but nutrition is such a complex issue that you cannot just advise cutting down on food – the consequences may be disastrous. The new supplement, which has recently been introduced to the scientific community, can be a good option, especially for those suffering from mild hypertension.
Hypertension is considered mild when it stays within the range of 120-139 for the diastolic pressure, and 80-89 for the systolic one. Some people may find it surprising, because such blood pressure has always been regarded as normal. However, one of the recent researches demonstrated that even these figures can indicate an increased risk for cardiovascular diseases. That is why the guidelines were changed.
At such a mild stage, hypertension can be treated without medications, by means of adjusting your lifestyle, including physical activity and diet. The latter is a difficult thing to change, as most foods we buy at supermarkets contain lots of sugar and fats, as well as salt. That is why the new supplement can help a wider audience reap the benefits of calorie intake reduction in a new way.
>In the study carried out by a team of scientists from CU Boulder, 24 volunteers, including both males and females aged 55-79, were given nicotinomide riboside, abbreviated as NR, every day. All of them were in good physical condition. NR is a supplement, which activates the molecular pathways involved in carrying out the processes related to calorie restriction benefits.
The participants were divided into two groups. One of them took placebo pills for six weeks; the second stage of the experiment implied taking NR chloride doses of 500 mg twice a day. The other group had a reversed plan: first, they took the supplement, and then they switched to placebo. The participants’ physical condition was assessed prior to the experiment and after it.
Having analyzed the blood samples taken from both groups, the researchers found that taking NR caused another chemical, namely nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide, to increase by 60%. This compound is used to activate sirtuins, i.e. enzymes that help make calorie restriction beneficial. It is an important part of human metabolism, and the concentration of this chemical declines as the person ages.
Since no significant adverse effects were reported, the scientists came to the conclusion that the supplement was safe to use. However, one of the most important findings was that a certain part of the volunteers benefited from supplement intake even more: in 13 people with stage 1 hypertension, systolic blood pressure dropped by ten points on average, which means the likelihood of a heart attack was reduced by 25%, according to standard calculations.
The researchers noted that more research is needed to find out what implications there may be. Besides, even if intake of the supplement proves to be beneficial in the course of a large-scale study, it does not mean those taking it will be able to eat whatever they want and follow a sedentary lifestyle. Physical activity and healthy dieting are essential aspects of a healthy lifestyle, and the supplement in question can be just another addition to the general pattern.