The Natural Treatment of Hypertension

Amanda James Wilburn, PharmD; Deborah S. King, PharmD; James Glisson, MD, PharmD; Robin W. Rockhold, PhD; Marion R. Wofford, MD, MPH

In This Article

Agents With Little or No Evidence of Benefit

Hawthorn is a member of the Rosaceae family and is used most often in Europe for the treatment of heart failure.[29] A recent well developed trial looked at the hypotensive effect of hawthorn extract and magnesium in mild, essential hypertension. Subjects were randomized to one of four groups: 600 mg magnesium, 500 mg hawthorn leaf extract, a combination of both magnesium and hawthorn leaf extract, and placebo. At the end of 10 weeks, analysis of variance showed no difference in decline of blood pressure in any of the four groups. Although factorial contrast analysis showed evidence of promising reduction in resting DBP in the hawthorn group at 10 weeks, there was no definitive evidence to support the use of hawthorn extract in the treatment of hypertension.[30]

Vitamin E in the treatment of hypertension received a rating of possibly ineffective in the Natural Medicines Comprehensive Database.[3]

Vitamin E seems to have no effect on blood pressure in patients with controlled hypertension. A randomized, controlled, open-label trial measured both clinic and 24-hour ambulatory blood pressure in 142 patients with controlled hypertension. Ambulatory blood pressure showed no change in SBP and a DBP decrease of only 1.6 mm Hg.[31]

The Heart Outcomes Prevention Evaluation (HOPE) Study[32] enrolled a total of 2545 women and 6996 men aged 55 years or older who were at high risk for cardiovascular disease. They were randomly assigned to receive 400 IU vitamin E daily or matching placebo along with either ramipril or matching placebo for approximately 4.5 years. There was no significant difference in cardiovascular events between those receiving vitamin E and those receiving placebo.[32]


Comments on Medscape are moderated and should be professional in tone and on topic. You must declare any conflicts of interest related to your comments and responses. Please see our Commenting Guide for further information. We reserve the right to remove posts at our sole discretion.