What are lactotripeptides?

Lactotripeptides is a commonly used name for two naturally occurring milk peptides: Isoleucine-Proline-Proline (IPP) and Valine-Proline-Proline (VPP). These Lactotripeptides are derived from casein, which is a milk protein also found in dairy products. Although most normal dairy products contain lactotripeptides, they are inactive within the original milk proteins. Dairy peptides can be effectively released through enzymatic predigestion – a process by which milk protein is enzymatically broken down into smaller pieces. Once activated, the peptides responsible for the blood pressure lowering effect can be delivered into the system in a highly concentrated form.

Several clinical studies have shown that these Lactotripeptides help promote healthy blood pressure levels as part of a healthy diet and lifestyle. [1]

Lactotripeptides and their impact on hypertension

Hypertension, or high blood pressure, is a significant health problem worldwide. Research has shown that even small blood pressure reductions can lower the risk of cardiovascular disease, including heart disease, kidney failure and stroke.

Dairy peptides work by inhibiting, or preventing, the activity of the angiotensin converting enzyme (ACE). ACE is part of the renin-angiotensin system – a natural mechanism that helps regulate blood pressure in the body. In certain individuals, the renin-angiotensin system can become overactive, often due to stress, an unhealthy diet and/or unhealthy lifestyle. Under such conditions ACE becomes overactive and converts more angiotensin I into angiotensin II. Angiotensin II causes blood vessels to contract, and so increases blood pressure which can potentially lead to hypertension. But when ACE activity is inhibited, the formation of angiotensin II is reduced. This then helps the blood vessels to relax and expand back to its normal healthy state, so blood pressure is lowered.

Lactotripeptides are a type of ACE inhibitor – they work by supporting the body’s natural processes to relax and expand (dilate) blood vessels, which in turn helps keep blood pressure within a healthy range.

Clinical evidence for their efficacy

The health claims of bioactive peptides have been scientifically validated by over 20 human clinical studies over the last ten years.

These human trials aimed to evaluate the effect of lactotripeptides on blood pressure. The vast majority show a blood pressure lowering effect of lactotripeptides in people with mild to moderate hypertension. Some also show an effect in those with high normal blood pressure. In those with normal blood pressure, however, lactotripeptides do not further lower blood pressure. There is an ample body of scientific research demonstrating the influence of lactotripeptides on blood pressure levels.

Heart health advice

For the best results regular consumption of dairy peptide-rich products should be reinforced with a heart-friendly wholesome diet, reduction in sodium and alcohol intake and regular exercise. Quitting smoking and weight management are equally recommended for both treatment and prevention of hypertension.

  1. Boelsma E; Kloek J Lactotripeptides and antihypertensive effects: a critical review. 2009 Mar;101(6):776-86.