Gardeners Have Lower Blood Pressure

Heart disease and stroke aren’t necessarily inevitable with age, especially when you get to reap what you have sown.

Science Crush

Highlights:

  • Traditional “hunter-gatherer” and “horticulturalist” populations have significantly lower age-related increases in blood pressure and less risks of atherosclerosis than “modernized” populations.
  • Lifestyle factors of these traditional populations — high physical activity and high fruit and vegetable diets — may protect against normal aging phenomena, high blood pressure and hardening of the arteries.

Top image courtesy Pixabay/Public Domain

High blood pressure and atherosclerosis — a disease in which arteries stiffen and fill with plaque — increase with age in the United States and other countries, raising risks for heart attack, stroke, kidney disease and death.

Age-related increases in blood pressure have been observed in almost every population, except among hunters-gatherers, farmers, pastoralists, and forager-horticulturalists who live off the land and grow what they need to survive.

“Surprisingly, heart disease and stroke aren’t necessarily inevitable with age,” said Michael Gurven, Ph.D., study author and anthropology professor and chairman of the University…

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