Kefir May Lower Blood Pressure by Boosting Gut-Brain Communication

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Research has shown that gut microbiome dysbiosis may cause high blood pressure in some people. Similarly, probiotics have been found to lower blood pressure by unknown mechanisms.

 

Now, researchers have found that the probiotic milk drink kefir may improve blood pressure by promoting communication between the gut and brain.

 

The findings were presented at the American Physiological Society (APS) annual meeting at Experimental Biology 2018 in San Diego.

 

The research team studied three groups of rats to figure out how kefir reduces high blood pressure (hypertension).

 

The first group (treated) had hypertension and were treated with kefir.

The second group (untreated) had hypertension and was not treated.

The third group (control) had normal blood pressure and was not treated.

 

After nine weeks of kefir supplementation, the treated rats had lower endotoxin levels, lower blood pressure, and improved intestinal permeability (leaky gut) when compared to the untreated rats.

 

In addition, kefir supplementation restored the balance of four types of gut bacteria and an enzyme in the brain that is essential for the nervous system to function correctly. Thus, suggesting that the nervous and digestive systems work together to reduce blood pressure.

 

Reference:

Mirian Silva-Cutini. "Probiotic kefir antihypertensive effects in spontaneously hypertensive rats involve central and peripheral mechanisms." Presented April 25th, in the Sails Pavilion of the San Diego Convention Center.