Can folic acid reduce pulse pressure?

A 2005 study in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition (AJCL) by Carolyn Williams, et al showed folic acid supplementation reduced brachial pulse pressure by 4.7 ± 1.6 mm Hg (P < 0.05) without changing mean arterial pressure. Researchers felt a key mechanism may be the reduction of arterial stiffness. The study had a randomized, placebo-controlled, double-blind, crossover design that incorporated 3 weeks of treatment with 5 mg folic acid/day or matching placebo; each treatment was separated by a 4 week washout phase.
There are studies that indicate folic acid may reduce pulse pressure. The dose used in the study was a prescription-only dose of 5 mg, which is high for folic acid. Taking high doses of folic acid can mask other conditions, so it is important to speak with your doctor to see how he/she feels about you adding folic acid to your medications.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.