While there isn’t a specific blood pressure diet, what you eat does play an extremely important role in whether you maintain healthy blood pressure levels or not. Many nutrients will affect your blood pressure directly while others just help the body maintain overall health.
There are things that you probably need to eat more of and other things that you should eat less of to maintain a proper balance, at least going by the typical diet of the modern world.
Eating less meat and more vegetables is a really good way to start. Most people eat far more meat than is necessary for good nutrition and therefore are getting way too much of the stuff we shouldn’t have – like fat and cholesterol.
With most meats, a piece roughly the size of a deck of cards is all you need so that 12 oz. sirloin is actually about 3-4 servings! It’s much better to fill up more on vegetables for all the vitamins, minerals, antioxidants and fiber you will get out of them.
Most of us consume far more than the daily recommended allowance of sodium. Even if you don’t normally salt your food before you eat, much of what we term “convenience” foods are way overloaded with sodium.
Go to your cabinet and check several boxes in there and you will probably be shocked at how much sodium you are actually consuming on a regular basis. High sodium levels in the blood contribute to fluid retention which in turn can raise your blood pressure.
Many people, particularly women, do not get enough calcium and vitamin D in our diets. That’s mostly because we’ve been told for so long that dairy products are fattening. Fortunately today, we have low fat and fat free options such as skim milk that can give us these important nutrients while not adding extra fat or calories.
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DASH diet: Healthy eating to lower your blood pressure
In as much as high blood pressure or hypertension can be attributed to genetics; lifestyle and illness it is also the direct result of one’s diet. If you do not monitor your diet closely, you should not be surprised one day when you are diagnosed of hypertension.
Closely monitoring the food you eat will save you from the possible disasters of a stroke or kidney failure, so it is important to take not of what you are going to read here about the high blood pressure diet you should subscribe to.
A diet low in salt is strongly recommended. Salt intake should not be too often and if that is the case you must drink a lot of water. Taking salt excessively is a direct cause of hypertension and it can lead to further complications with the heart and kidney.
Try not to apply more salt to your dished out food if you applied it during cooking. If possible, also refrain from pre-cooked meals that usually have too much salt. Overweight people are also said to be more susceptible to heart disease if they take too much salt.
A handy method that can assist in controlling salt intake is buying fresh vegetables and meat instead of canned and processed foods with high sodium levels. Even better, you should try using herbs and spices that aren’t high in salt content. But that’s just half the story.
Eating vegetables, fruits and meat that are high in potassium is also another way of reducing blood pressure. Potassium has the convenient effect of removing or dissolving excess sodium (salt) in your body. Foods high in potassium include bananas; spinach; milk; coco powder; wheat; dried fruits and fish.
In addition, alcohol intake has to be kept at moderate levels. When alcohol is consumed in excess it increases your blood pressure quite significantly. Cut down alcohol intake to at least 3-4 pints a day and try not drinking alcohol on some days during the week. Alcohol related diseases like liver cirrhosis could worsen your health if you already have hypertension.
Avoid eating too much fat containing foods, as these will definitely worsen your health if you are already overweight. However, this does not mean you should cut them out completely, there are essential fats that your body still needs. Attempt at eating low fat margarine and milk as well.
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