Iowa Public Television


Acid for the Heart

posted on July 6, 2001

What do vegetarian monks and diabetics who take aspirin have in common? The answer: higher than average levels of a salicylic acid. Salicylic acid is an active ingredient in aspirin, often taken to help block the formation of blood clots and prevent heart attacks.

The Journal of Clinical Pathology compared the acid levels in the blood of vegetarian Buddhist monks, non-vegetarian residents in the same region and a group of diabetic patients taking 75 milligrams of aspirin daily.

The findings of such high levels of the acid in the vegetarians may help explain other studies that have found lower levels of heart disease among people who eat a lot of fruit and vegetables.

Tags: heart news