News • July 31, 2020

CBU professor studies the effects of supplementation on the cardiovascular system

CBU professor studies the effects of supplementation on the cardiovascular system

Riverside, Calif. (July 31, 2020) – For the past several years, Dr. Jong-Kyung Kim, associate professor of kinesiology at California Baptist University, has studied how diet supplementation can benefit the cardiovascular system.

In the past 18 months, Kim conducted two studies looking at the benefits of grape seed extract (GSE) supplementation. The first project looked at physiological responses, such as resting blood pressure in obese individuals. The second looked at the effects of the supplementation on blood pressure during exercise and resting blood vessel stiffness.

CBU professor studies the effects of supplementation on the cardiovascular system“Cardiac patients cannot perform daily activity for a long period of time because they do not have enough blood flow to the muscles,” Kim said.

“Everyone knows that exercise is good medicine,” Kim added. “But individuals with obesity or hypertension, when they exercise, have an exaggerated blood pressure response. It can cause cardiac events, like a stroke or a heart attack.”

“The main goal of this project is to determine that GSE treatment improves blood flow to exercise’s skeletal muscle and then, in turn, improves exercise tolerance,” Kim said.

“One of the obesity-associated health abnormalities involves high blood pressure developing into hypertension and high arterial stiffness,” Kim said. “Our studies suggest that the GSE supplement can act as a non-pharmacological treatment to reduce blood pressure and arterial stiffness at rest and during exercise.”

Kim intends to do further research on this subject and to collaborate with a cardiologist group in Riverside to collect more data.

Two graduate students in the Department of Kinesiology assisted Kim with the studies. Katherine Dillon (’20) recruited participants, collected data and wrote the first draft of the manuscript for both studies.

“With writing up the manuscript, the knowledge I obtained from numerous other research articles I read in order to make sense of our study and what we have found through our investigation definitely helped me expand my knowledge. I feel [this] prepared me further for [pursuing] my Ph.D.,” Dillon said. 

Brian Shariffi (’20) also recruited participants and collected data.

“This allows future studies to advance our knowledge in how GSE can potentially help improve lives,” Shariffi said. “Dr. Kim gave a good balance of guidance as well as independence, which helped further advance my skills not only as a researcher but as a teacher. This experience kind of was the starting point to my interest into pursuing a Ph.D.”

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