Did you know, approximately 1.18 billion people around the world suffer from hypertension every year? Acknowledged as the silent killer, hypertension has taken away the lives of so many people that it can be also considered as an epidemic condition.
Quite scary, right? High blood pressure can be quite dreadful to deal with but with the help of some regulation in your daily diet along with proper medications can help you to effectively treat the ailment.
So without further ado, let us learn more about the foods that can help to lower the blood pressure then.
What is blood pressure?
Before starting on the food items that will help you to lower high blood pressure, we should first have some information about this silent killer.
High blood pressure or hypertension is a condition in which blood pressure in our body increases to unhealthy levels. It generally occurs when the arteries become narrower and produce increased resistance on the blood flow. As the arteries get narrower, higher the blood pressure becomes. Soon this pressure reaches such a point that causes serious ailments in the body including heart attack.
Causes of high blood pressure
The causes of high blood pressure still need to be uncovered fully, however, through years of research, it has been seen that our lifestyle plays a very important role in having high blood pressure.
Some of the most common causes of high blood pressure are:
Some people are generally predisposed to hypertension. Gene mutation or genetic abnormalities inherited from parents leads to an increase in high blood pressure.
Dysfunctioning of any organs in the body can lead to an imbalance of salts and blood in the bloodstream. For example, if your kidney does not work properly due to ageing, it can lead to hypertension in the long run.
Unhealthy lifestyle choices and poor diet are one of the biggest factors of high blood pressure in the body. These lifestyle choices often lead to obesity or weight-related problems which ultimately leads to high blood pressure in the long run.
Apart from the above-mentioned symptoms, conditions like obstructive sleep apnea, side effects due to some medications or the use of some illegal drugs can also lead to hypertension.
Symptoms of high blood pressure
High blood pressure is known as the silent killer. It would be years before you know that you have been suffering from hypertension. However, with the help of professional medical advisors, there are some few symptoms that can help you to detect high blood pressure like:
- Headache, dizziness and visual changes
- Shortness of breath and chest pain
- Flushing and nosebleeds
- Blood in urine
Now that we have gathered some basic pieces of information about hypertension, let us learn about how we can reduce it with the help of the inclusion of some foods in our diet.
Best foods for high blood pressure
Our diet plays a very important role in our general well being and as we can already see that one of the biggest causes of hypertension is consuming a poor diet. Therefore, in order to combat hypertension, including the following food diets in your daily diet can be of great help.
- Green leafy vegetables
There can never be much emphasis on the point that how much green leafy vegetables are beneficial for our body.
These green vegetables are low in calories, high in fibres and rich in nitrates, potassium and folates. According to studies it has been found that one-two servings of these vegetables will help you to reduce hypertension up to 24 hours.
Some of the examples of leafy greens that can help you to reduce hypertension are cabbage, collard greens, kale, lettuce, spinach and broccoli.
Broccoli is loaded with flavonoid antioxidants which lower blood pressure levels and enhance blood vessel functions. On the other hand, consuming spinach in the form of curry or soups will help you to decrease artery stiffness and improve heart health.
Similar to vegetables, fruits are also abundant in antioxidants that will help you to fight against high blood pressure.
Some of the fruits that can be very effective against hypertension are:
Loaded with vitamin, minerals and plant compounds, fruits like grapefruit, orange and lemons can quite efficiently keep all heart disease risk factors at bay.
Abundant in antioxidants and anthocyanins, berries can increase nitric oxide levels in the blood and reduce the production of blood vessels restricting molecules in the bloodstream.
According to studies, bananas are rich in potassium which plays a vital role in managing hypertension. Potassium helps in alleviating the tensions in the walls of blood vessels created due to sodium spike in the blood.
Avocado, kiwi and watermelon can also be very beneficial against hypertension.
Time and again, seeds have proven that they can be tiny but they have mammoth nutrients and health benefits stored in them.
Seeds like sunflower, pumpkin, flax and chia can produce innumerable health benefits when included in your daily diet.
Pumpkin seeds are a concentrated source of very important nutrients that help I’m blood pressure control and also helps in relaxation of blood vessels in the body. On the other hands, chia and flax seeds are abundant in nutrients like potassium, magnesium and fibre that can be very beneficial in blood pressure regulation.
Apart from the above-mentioned foods for high blood pressure, you can also include some of the following food items in your diet too.
- Salmon and other fatty fish
- Tomato and tomato products
- Greek yoghurt
- Herbs and spices
Hypertension if left untreated can cause damaged arteries, heart and brain. The key component in treating high blood pressure is an early diagnosis. Have a weekly or monthly check-up to check your blood pressure levels. If you notice any of the above symptoms or fluctuations in blood pressure readings, immediately consult your doctor for proper treatments and medications.
The biggest cause of high blood pressure is an unruly lifestyle and lack of proper nutrients in your diet. With the help of this article, we are sure that you now have an idea about the foods that will help you to lower your blood pressure and help you to achieve a healthy lifestyle. Now go on, include them in your daily diets and see the magic it produces.