Going gluten free has brought my blood pressure back to normal?!


About 8 months ago I registered with a new GP practice and had a routine blood pressure check. I am 58 years old. As it was above normal (around 145/90 as I recall), the doctor asked me to do some home testing, for a week. The results were on average somewhere between 135 to 145 over 90'ish. The GP said it was borderline as to whether we should medicate, but as there were no other significant risk factors (I'm not overweight, don't smoke and have no other health issues), then a few lifestyle changes and a healthy diet should suffice. He advised me to buy a good quality blood pressure monitor and to monitor my BP at home.

One thing I noticed early on, was that my BP would sometimes spike in the middle of the night and didn't follow the normal diurnal pattern, as in the evenings it would start to increase after my dinner and be at its highest around 10pm, just before I went to bed. It,was usually at its lowest around 6 pm just after arriving home from work.

A coule of months ago I started to develop heartburn and bloating, especially after meals, with the feeling that my food was sitting heavily in my stomach and not being digested properly. After reading about a test for *low*stomach acid I started taking some Betane HCL tablets with my meals and the symptoms have disappeared and I have no more digestive problems or heartburn. I then read low stomach acid was also found in people with either coeliac disease or gluten sensitivity, so as an experiment decided to go gluten free for a few weeks.

The results have been spectacular! I have made no other changes to my lifestyle and take no medication apart from the HCL tablets, but my blood pressure has dropped to an average of 124/80, with no night time spikes and a pre-bedtime reading of around 120/80 or less. Last night it was 117/77. This is based on dozens of readings at different times of the day over a three week period, so not just a blip!

Was it the gluten and or low stomach acid that caused the problem? Has anyone else experienced this?

11 Replies

  • Wow, I am really pleased for you.

    I have been coeliac for 20+ years and sadly being totally gluten free has not fixed my BP. However, it might be worth a 'try' for anyone wanting to control their BP by diet. Contact the coeliac DH and gluten free message board for further help.

    I expect you are also eating more healthily at the moment. One thing to watch - the GF recipies for cakes and biscuits, and also the specially made GF breads and cakes etc ate VERY high in sugar and fat! You may put on some unwanted lbs.

  • Thanks for the reply and the warning about the GF cakes etc. I have a very sweet tooth!

  • They really are delicious - just to make it worse you can eat all kinds of 'normal' foods like some Walkers crisps and some chocolate bars (read the lables) but not things like MarsBars or Maltesers.

    Do contact the 'Coeliac and DH .... ' people for sensible help.

  • Thanks, that's good to know :-)

  • Do you take the heck tabs all the time

  • They're called Betane HCL tablets and I take a couple with most meals, especially if there's a high meat / protein content. Look out for the ones with pepsin in them as this helps with the digestion process too. Google "Betane HCL challenge" for more info.

  • Reply: where can I buy Betane HCL tablets

  • I use these:-

    Now Foods Betaine HCl, 648 mg , 120 Capsules(Size: 120) amazon.co.uk/dp/B00NR20W92/...

  • thank you. I'll definitely try them, my digestive system causes me the most problems.

  • Never heard of them (but I have heard of Heck gluten free sausages). I will look in at Holland and Barret next time I'mm in town.

  • Not sure you'll find them in Holland and Barrett, and if you do they'll probably be the wrong strength and quite expensive. See my previous post with link to Amazon for best source.

You may also like...