Does nitric oxide really lower blood pressure? Q.
A. Green leafy vegetables and beets supply dietary nitrate. In the body, this is converted to nitric oxide, which relaxes blood vessels and lowers blood pressure (Nutrition Research Reviews, December 2017).
A study in healthy older people demonstrated that consuming beet juice rich in nitrates lowered blood pressure, reduced the clotting activity of blood and had antiinflammatory properties (Nutrients, Nov. 22, 2017). We are not aware of studies utilizing nitric oxide as a dietary supplement.
To learn more about beet juice, grape juice, pomegranate juice and dark chocolate as foods that can help with blood pressure control, you may wish to read our Guide to Blood Pressure Treatment. Anyone who would like a copy, please send $3 in check or money order with a stamped, self-addressed envelope to: Graedons’ People’s Pharmacy, No. B-67, P.O. Box 52027, Durham, NC 27717-2027. It also can be downloaded for $2 from our website peoplespharmacy.com.
A. There is a popular belief that consuming dairy products can contribute to nasal congestion. We have struggled to find research confirming this connection. We think, however, that people suffering with ongoing sinusitis might want to try switching to nondairy beverages and foods as an experiment.
A recent review demonstrates that more than 10 percent of U.S. adults have food allergies, with shellfish and milk most common (JAMA Network Open, Jan. 4, 2019). People who suspect an allergy would do well to see a doctor about allergy testing.
A. We have been impressed by the number of people who report a benefit from this simple approach. Selenium sulfide is an ingredient in many dandruff shampoos. It works in part by suppressing the growth of yeast, especially Malassezia. This organism is associated with dandruff and seborrheic dermatitis, a condition in which skin on the face becomes itchy, red and flaky.
Rosacea is a different condition that may be due in part to an immune reaction to small mites that normally live on the skin. Symptoms include a tendency to flush or blush readily, persistent redness and small bumps on the skin that resemble pimples. Selenium sulfide appears to moderate this immune reaction so that symptoms become less severe.