Published Paper Review #1

Article: T AlleyneI; S RoacheII; C ThomasI; A ShirleyIII; The Control of Hypertension by the use of Coconut Water and Mauby: Two Tropical Food Drinks; Article Accessed on 10th April, 2013

Care For A Drink, Anyone?

Did you know that coconut water and mauby are deemed two beneficial drinks to a healthy, “low-hypertensive” lifestyle?

Hypertension, as we all know is high blood pressure and is due to the elevation of arterial blood pressure which can have detrimental effects on the human body such as heart attacks, aneurysms, renal failure, to name a few. Hypertension is usually caused by smoking, obesity, lack of physical activity and diabetes, high sodium intake, stress or it may be genetically induced.

The Beginning

In the article, “The Control of Hypertension by the use of Coconut Water and Mauby: Two Tropical Food Drinks”, suggested that the consumption of these two drinks can gradually lower hypertension in the body. Various studies show that there is generally a low hypertension count in black populations of Sub-Saharan Africa, as compared to the Western Hemisphere, the USA and the Caribbean, where there is a high hypertension count.  Research has shown that black populations have a higher tendency in developing chronic high blood pressure and that symptoms develop at earlier stages in life.  Many treatments have been futile in attempting to cure this disorder, such as the beta blockers and ACE-Inhibitors. Over the centuries, this chronis disorder has been treated with the use of herbs and natural products, however with the emergence of modern medicines, these practices are now neglected.

Coconut water is used in many tropical countries as an ingredient in foods, and also as a beverage. The immature endosperm, a soft jelly is eaten whereas the dried endosperm is used in the making of pastries such as coconut tart. Cooking oil and margarine are two by-products of the dried endosperm. Based on scientific analysis, coconut water is high in sodium and potassium ions.

Mauby is manufactured from the bark extract of the mauby tree. It is a bitter, dark liquid in the concentrated form, and can be diluted with water and sweetened to taste. The concentrated form of mauby can be used to treat diabetes mellitus.

The Experiment

The study was conducted with the assistance of twenty-eight hypertensive individuals who were divided into four groups. Their systolic and diastolic blood pressures were observed for a period of two weeks before and after the, and once more for another two weeks while undergoing treatment. Group one which was the control, consumed drinking water, group two consumed coconut water, group three consumed mauby, and group four consumed a mixture of both coconut water and mauby.

Individuals studied were from two separate areas in Trinidad, West Indies. Twenty one individuals were from an industrial company in North-western side of the country and the remaining seven were from the St. Augustine Campus, UWI. The study was conducted based on the Declaration of Helsinki and Tokyo and was approved by the Ethics Committee of The University of the West Indies.

For each individual, all observations were recorded at approximately the same time of the day by the same researcher and they were asked to make no changes in their daily routines which ranged from eating habits to antihypertensive medication. The average blood pressures prior to and post the experiment were recoreded for each individual which included the included the highest and lowest values.

Assortment

The individuals were separated into their groups and each person was required to consume 300ml of the designated liquid at two points during the course of the day for the period allotted (two weeks). The careful preparation of the liquids to be consumed was carried out and dispensed into 300ml bottles.

What was the outcome?

For the controlled group, seven out of the eight individuals were found to have a high mean in systolic pressure. However there was no significant difference in the mean of diastolic pressure.

For the group who consumed only the coconut water, seven individuals experienced a decrease in mean of their systolic pressures. Two individuals had significant decreases. As compared to the systolic pressures, there were two cases with significant decrease in the mean of diastolic pressures.

For the group who received mauby, five out of seven individuals were able to complete the study. Two individuals experienced significant decreases in the mean of systolic pressures whereas the two other showed a general decrease and the remaining individual showed an increase in the mean systolic pressure.

Lastly, for the group who received the mixture of coconut water and mauby, there were high significant decreases in both the systolic and diastolic pressure averages as well as high decreases in the diastolic pressure averages.

Conclusion

Consumption of coconut water and mauby mixture resulted in the significant decrease in systolic and diastolic blood pressure averages as compared to the consumption of the separated beverages.

Link: http://caribbean.scielo.org/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S0043-31442005000100002&lng=en