Both short-term and long-term orange juice consumption has been shown to affect a significant range of heart and cardiovascular health-related benefits. Emerging research suggests positive effects on blood pressure, limitation of detrimental clotting and plaque formation activities, and beneficial effects on lipid profiles and cholesterol formation. Emerging evidence is also demonstrating that some components of citrus juice serve directly to signal our genes to change activities in ways that are rated to support of better cardiovascular health.(1,2,3)
Blood pressure is the force of blood against artery walls. It is measured in millimeters of mercury (mm Hg) and recorded as two numbers: systolic pressure (as the heart contracts) and diastolic pressure (as the heart relaxes between beats). Blood pressure [systolic/diastolic] values are typically reported as, for instance, “120 over 80” ; or “120/80”. High blood pressure (hypertension) is defined as chronically elevated high blood pressure, with systolic blood pressure of 140 mm Hg or greater, and diastolic blood pressure of 90 mm Hg or greater.
Lifestyle modifications such as engaging in regular physical activity, quitting smoking and eating a healthy diet (limiting intake of saturated fat and sodium and increasing consumption of fiber, fruits and vegetables) are advocated for the prevention, treatment, and control of high blood pressure.
Florida orange and grapefruit juices are sodium and fat free foods. Florida orange juice is a good source of potassium, another important factor in controlling high blood pressure. The 2010 Dietary Guidelines for Americans states that the inclusion of orange juice in the diet can help meet recommended levels of potassium intake. These facts suggest that Florida citrus juices should be included as part of any low sodium diet and/or any blood pressure reducing eating plan.
Florida citrus juices also contain other vitamins and minerals, such as folate and magnesium that have been shown to have beneficial effects on blood pressure, but the information is limited.
Cardiovascular Literature Review – 2010
Blood Pressure Technical Review 2005
Reference 1 – Morand et al; Am J Clin Nutr 2011;93:73-80
Reference 2 -Cesar et al; Nutr Res. 2010 Oct;30(10):689-94
Reference 3 – Ghanim et al;Am J Clin Nutr April 2010 vol. 91 no. 4 940-949