Pharmacological treatment of hypertension reduces the risk of cardiovascular disease; however, randomized, controlled clinical trials and population studies have also shown that abnormally high blood pressure (BP) can be lowered with diet modification and exercise. The objective of this pilot study was to determine whether daily dietary supplementation with 10 g Chlorella tablets and 100 ml Chlorella extract for 2 months would reduce BP in subjects with a mean sitting diastolic BP (SiDBP) between 90 and 115 mm Hg. Thirty-three people were enrolled and underwent a 4-week washout period from all antihypertensive medications, during which they consumed placebo. At completion of this washout/placebo period, 24 subjects were considered evaluable (i.e., had a SiDBP between 90 and 115 mm Hg) and were continued in the study. After 1 or 2 months of dietary Chlorella supplementation, the average heart rate, sitting systolic BP, and SiDBP changed only slightly; after 2 months of Chlorella consumption, the group's mean SiDBP was 96.5 +/- 6.6. However, a heterogenous response pattern to Chlorella existed, with 25% (6/24) of the subjects achieving their BP goal (SiDBP less than 90 mm Hg). Furthermore, the BP of nonresponders did not increase significantly above washout values. Quality-of-life questionnaires indicated an overall perception that health had significantly improved in conjunction with Chlorella consumption. The results indicate that, for some subjects with mild to moderate hypertension, a daily dietary supplement of Chlorella reduced or kept stable their SiDBP.
Merchant RE, Andre CA, Sica DA. Nutritional supplementation with Chlorella pyrenoidosa for mild to moderate hypertension. J Med Food. 2002 October Department of Anatomy and Internal Medicine, Virginia Commonwealth University, Medical College of Virginia, Richmond, VA 23298-0709, USA.