Nibbling a celery can not only benefit your waist measurement. It can also help your blood pressure. According to the Medical Center of the University of Maryland, the seed of celery is a natural diuretic. Diuretics remove excess fluid from the blood, which reduces tension against the arterial walls and lowers blood pressure. This does not mean you should change your medication for celery stems, because more research is needed to demonstrate the effectiveness of celery in controlling blood pressure.
One cup of chopped celery has only 20 calories, but 104 mg of sodium. Depending on your eating habits, this could be important, because you could add a significantly larger amount of it to your sodium intake. If you have high blood pressure, your doctor probably explained that eating too many very salty foods can cause your body to retain fluids, which increases the volume of your blood and blood pressure. Because of this, I could have asked you to limit your sodium intake. Celery also has 8 mg of vitamin C and 344 mg of potassium and is known for its strong flavor. If you do not like the taste, you can also get celery in the form of a supplement such as oil, tablets or powder. If you prefer to eat fresh celery, it is available all year round.
Three chemicals contained in celery promote healthy blood pressure: 3-n-butylphthalide or NBP, apigenin, an antioxidant of plant origin; and omega-6 fatty acids, an essential fatty acid. In his book "How to Prevent and Treat Diabetes with Natural Medicine," Dr. Michael Murray, a naturopathic doctor, writes that NBP behaves like a calcium channel blocker, dilating arteries and relaxing blood vessels. Apigenin protects your body against cell damage, decreases inflammation in the arteries and prevents blood clots. According to the University of Maryland Medical Center, Omega-6 fatty acids can help protect your body against hypertension, or high blood pressure.
In the May 2005 issue of "Progress in Cardiovascular Disease," Dr. Mark Houston writes that in animal studies, NBP lowers systolic blood pressure by 24 points. Systolic pressure measures the force your heart exerts when pumping blood. It is the highest number in reading your blood pressure. In his article, Dr. Houston also refers to a study in humans in which 14 of the 16 people with high blood pressure experienced a "significant" decrease in blood pressure after eating celery. Dr. Houston is a physician in the Department of Internal Medicine at Vanderbilt University.To confirm the connection between celery and blood pressure, researchers must conduct more studies with much larger human populations.
Although there is no recommendation on the daily intake of celery or a recommendation on the dose of supplements, celery is normally considered quite safe. If you are pregnant, avoid celery supplements, because they can cause uterine bleeding. It may also interact with certain medications and may increase the effect of anticoagulants or diuretics. Talk to your doctor about consuming celery or fresh celery supplements to decide what is best for you.