People suffering from high blood pressure could see a significant reduction by drinking beetroot juice, according to a new study by the British Heart Foundation.

According to the research - in which a sample of eight women and seven men with systolic blood pressures varying from 140 to 159 mm Hg were given servings of250ml of organic beetroot juice Beet It - 100 per cent of subjects saw a reduction within hours of drinking the juice with their blood pressures remaining low up to 24 hours later and an average reduction of 10mm Hg recorded.

Scientists claim that the high nitrate levels of beetroot juice helps to lower high blood pressure, which has been linked with cardiovascular disease, a leading cause of strokes and heart attacks.

A British Heart Foundation spokesperson explained: 'This nitrate (NO3) converts into nitrite (NO2) though interaction with enzymes in saliva which can be stored in body tissues where is can be reduced further to Nitric Oxide (NO) in the blood system. Nitric oxide is a signalling molecule that widens blood vessels, increasing blood flow and so reducing blood pressure. This also increases the blood supply and thereby oxygen supply to the muscles, enabling them to work more efficiently.'

James White Drinks, the firm which produces Beet It, says it will continue to produce new beetroot juice lines, after recently launching two new blends with Ginger and withPassionfruit, and it's full of praise for the health benefits of beetroot.

Lawrence Mallinson, owner of James White, concluded: “The William Harvey Research Institute has led the way in beetroot juice from the start. And as producers of Beet It, we are proud to be their beetroot juice supplier. We are now supplying around 40 universities world wide with Beet It.'