A reduction in levels of blood pressure required for a diagnosis of hypertension will highlight the advantages of non-prescription alternatives, believes Stephen O’Hara at Optibiotix Health PLC () .
Last month the American Heart Association changed its classification of high blood pressure to a reading of 130/80 from 140/90, a move that instantly put half of the US population in the unhealthy category.
Reports in the UK have suggested that health watchdog NICE (National Institute for Health and Care Excellence) is also considering lower guidance, action that would classify millions more Britons as medically unfit.
“There is no natural cut-off point above which ‘hypertension’ definitively exists and below which it does not” NICE said.
High blood pressure, or hypertension, hardens the arteries and increases the risk of heart disease, diabetes and strokes
Heart problems account for a quarter of all deaths in the UK.
O’Hara, Optiobiotix’s chief executive, believes a new class of probiotics that modulate the human microbiome can help people with high blood pressure to manage the condition.
Statins are the standard treatment to lower cholesterol but O’Hara says LPldl is a viable non-prescription alternative.
“We believe that our microbiome modulating probiotic, LPLDL, is not only a cutting-edge scientific development, but a safe and natural way for people to reduce their blood pressure, and to effectively manage their long-term cardiovascular risk,” he said in an article in Nutraceutical Review.
A study at Reading University showed it was a safe and reduced LDL cholesterol by up to 13.9%, and blood pressure by 5.1%.
LPldl works by affecting the metabolism of bile acids in the intestine and was chosen after 4,000 microbial candidates were assessed using Optibiotix’s Optiscreen platform.