High blood pressure, also known as Hypertension, is a serious health issue that affects many Americans. The pressure of your blood on your artery walls can cause many health problems including heart disease, kidney disease, and stroke. While many factors contribute to your blood pressure, it’s important to do everything in your control to keep it at healthy level. Exercise and proper diet can help a lot. Here are some foods to consider introducing into your diet or replacing unhealthy options with!
Let’s start with breakfast, a difficult meal for some. Oatmeal is a great option to help lower your blood pressure. It’s high in fiber, and low in fat and sodium. While a bacon, egg, and cheese muffin may sound appetizing, it’s not the best idea when watching your fat and sodium intake. It’s also important to not load your oatmeal up with tons of sugar and butter, as the fiber only goes so far when you’re drowning it in unhealthy additions. Lowfat milk and yogurt are also smart breakfast options!
As a child we are told to “eat our vegetables,” and that goes for adults as well! Leafy greens are high in potassium and other valuable vitamins. Potassium helps your kidneys combat sodium. Lettuce, kale, greens, spinach, they’re all perfect for improving your diet. Eat them raw in a salad, bake kale in the oven for a crunchy snack, or incorporate spinach in whatever meat you’re cooking! Just remember not to douse your salad in tons of dressing, especially not ranch.
Want a healthy main course? Fish is exactly what you’re looking for. High in vitamin D and omega-3 fatty acids, fish like salmon actively combat hypertension while tasting great. There are many different ways to prepare fish, and it goes with just about anything! It’s also easy to cook, which may be a barrier for eating healthy.
And you can’t forget dessert! Fruit is the perfect sweet treat to substitute ice cream or cookies. Berries provide vitamins for a low-calorie cost, while bananas offer high amounts of potassium. But that’s not all; eating dark chocolate can lower your risk for cardiovascular disease. It’s rich flavor and hint of sweetness are a great substitute for less-healthy chocolate desserts.
It’s important to remember that eating one or two of these foods does not mean your blood pressure will be decreased! Be mindful of what you shouldn’t eat as well! Combined with exercise and an overall healthy diet, these foods could help lower your blood pressure.