Christa Nicola

According to new research from the University of South Australia, people’s daily dollop of yogurt in the morning could help lower high blood pressure.

A study in partnership with the University of Maine examined the correlation between yogurt intake, blood pressure and cardiovascular health, finding that yogurt can help lower blood pressure for those with hypertension.

Dr Alexandra Wade from the University of South Australia says the study shows promising results for those with high blood pressure. “High blood pressure is the number one risk factor for cardiovascular disease, so it’s important that we continue to find ways to reduce and regulate it.

“Dairy foods, especially yoghurt, may be capable of reducing blood pressure. This is because dairy foods contain a range of micronutrients, including calcium, magnesium and potassium, all of which are involved in the regulation of blood pressure,” Dr Wade says.

“Yoghurt is especially interesting because it also contains bacteria that promote the release of proteins which lowers blood pressure. This study showed for people with elevated blood pressure, even small amounts of yoghurt were associated with lower blood pressure.

“And for those who consumed yoghurt regularly, the results were even stronger, with blood pressure readings nearly seven points lower than those who did not consume yoghurt,” Dr Wade says.

More than a billion people globally suffer from hypertension (high blood pressure), putting them at a higher risk of heart attacks or strokes. Cardiovascular diseases (CVD’S) are the leading cause of death worldwide – one person dies from CVD’s every 12 minutes in Australia.

Nine hundred fifteen people were used to conduct the study, and their habitual yogurt consumption was measured using a food frequency questionnaire. Researchers say future studies should continue to focus on individuals with hypertension to examine the benefits of yogurt.

There are many delicious, easy ways to get your daily yogurt into your diet. Whether it be a yogurt bowl for breakfast with fruit and nuts, a spoonful on top of your cereal or adding it to your morning smoothie – now is the time to start incorporating these little habits into your daily routine.