Having high blood pressure can be worrisome, especially if you don’t take action to reduce them earlier on. There are several ways to reduce blood pressure such as through medications. However, if you prefer to go the natural way, there are plenty of foods that lower blood pressure.
If you’re clueless on how to maintain a good high blood pressure diet, below we compiled a list of foods to avoid with high blood pressure along with the recommended foods that lower blood pressure.
What You Need To Know When You’re On A High Blood Pressure Diet
When you have high blood pressure, the pressure of the blood pumping into your arteries is way beyond the normal range. Most of the time people wouldn’t notice that they have high blood pressure.
High blood pressure can be caused due to poor lifestyle habits such as certain foods as well as weight gain or loss.
The basic rules of thumb for a high blood pressure diet would be to ditch the salt and use vinegar, spices, herbs, or fruit juices when adding flavour to the food. You should also try including food that consists of low levels of salt, fat, and calories. Aim for foods that are high in potassium, magnesium, and antioxidants.
You should also try to reduce the amount of margarine or butter as much as possible, alongside salad dressings.
Top Foods That Lower Blood Pressure
Bananas contain a large amount of potassium which is a type of mineral to reduce hypertension, making it one of the top foods that helps to effectively lower blood pressure. Normal adults should eat a minimum amount of 4,700mg of potassium on a daily basis.
Studies have shown that eating at least two bananas a day could help reduce blood pressure levels by roughly 10%.
Oats don't just lower your blood pressure but it also offers a wide range of health benefits such as improving the digestive system. Oats are packed with fibre (beta-glucan to be exact) which is essential to reduce blood pressure levels.
Generally, oats are one of the common foods that lower blood pressure because you can have oats for breakfast or as a snack during the day - it is easy to implement into your daily high blood pressure diet.
3. Fermented food
When it comes to fermented food, not only will it help improve your gut health, but it also reduces blood pressure by blocking a particular enzyme that increases it. For those who don’t know, fermented food is packed with good bacteria and yeast to help maintain overall good gut health.
Some of the best fermented foods to reduce blood pressure would be greek yoghurt, kombucha, tempeh, miso and kimchi.
Spinach is one of the best foods that lower blood pressure due to the high potassium content alongside various other nutrients such as magnesium and folate. Besides, spinach is generally low in calories so even if you eat a large amount, it wouldn’t be bad for you.
The nutrients offered by spinach will reduce the stiffness of arteries and improve overall heart health aside from lowering blood pressure levels.
Apparently, garlic is a common food to reduce blood pressure as it contains the active ingredient called allicin which offers numerous health benefits. The nitric oxide in our body will increase with the help of garlic and at the same time smoothen the muscles while allowing the blood vessels to further dilate, thus reducing high blood pressure.
6. Dark Chocolate
One of the recommended foods to reduce blood pressure would be dark chocolate as it contains flavonoids that produce nitric oxide. Nitric oxide actually helps to relax the blood vessels.
Be sure to consume dark chocolate which has at least 70% of cocoa to fully maximise the health benefits.
7. Citrus fruits
The recommended fruits for high blood pressure would be citrus fruits such as orange, grapefruit and lemon. These fruits are loaded with plenty of vitamins and minerals to help reduce the risks of heart diseases including high blood pressure.
However, do keep in mind that certain citrus fruits such as grapefruit can affect existing blood pressure medications. It’s best to take advice from your doctor if you wish to start consuming fruits for high blood pressure.
Check out our meal plans and kickstart your healthy diet journey today.
Top Foods To Avoid With High Blood Pressure
1. Frozen food
Frozen foods such as frozen pizzas tend to have a high amount of sodium, which is bad for your blood pressure. Make sure to check the ingredients label and look out for the sodium content. If it’s more than 600mg, you should not consume it.
2. Snacks that are salty
Did you know potato chips (or other salty snacks) are one of the main foods to avoid with high blood pressure? The best tasting chips are usually the ones with high salt content, which not only causes weight gain but also increases your blood pressure even more.
3. Processed meat
Processed meat is also one of the top foods to avoid with high blood pressure due to the high amount of sodium. You should also know that generally, processed meat isn’t that healthy since it’s not fresh.
4. Canned beans or vegetables
Another culprit which is packed with sodium would be canned beans, vegetables or any form of canned food. It’s always better to opt for fresh food instead of canned ones. The reason why they have high sodium content is that it is used to increase the shelf life.
If you're looking for healthy dishes and snacks, YoloMart has what you're looking for.
Lifestyle Tips To Help Patients With High Blood Pressure
Other than maintaining a good high blood pressure diet, there are other tips to implement in your lifestyle to lower your blood pressur
1. Start a regular exercise routine
You will have to maintain a strict exercise routine because exercising helps to bring your blood pressure down. Try to aim for at least 30 minutes of exercise every week. You could either start strength training, dancing, jogging or walking.
2. Maintain a healthy diet on a daily basis
Without a doubt, to lower your blood pressure levels, you need to eat foods that lower blood pressure as mentioned above.
3. Try to reduce your alcohol intake
Too much alcohol is already bad enough for your overall health, let alone your blood pressure levels! Though you don’t have to quit alcohol altogether, just try to reduce your overall consumption.
4. Manage your stress better
It’s a given, that chronic stress contributes a whole lot to high blood pressure. You need to make sure that your stress levels are maintained at a normal level. How? Well, you can always perform your favourite hobbies and take breaks every now and then.
5. Stop smoking
Now if you are a heavy smoker, it’s no surprise that you have high blood pressure levels. You won’t just reduce your blood pressure levels but also have better heart health.