High blood pressure is rampant today all over the world owing to factors like stress and a change in lifestyle. While it may not sound very dangerous, it comes with an increased risk of cardiovascular diseases, strokes and kidney failures, besides other health hazards.
Though the condition cannot be overturned, a few foods can go a long way in easing the problem a little by lowering the blood pressure. Thus, any person suffering from high blood pressure, also known as hypertension, ought to make a change in his or her dietary habits to ensure that the condition does not possess a threat in the long run.
Here, we list the 10 best foods that help lower blood pressure:
1. Milk and yogurt
Milk and yogurt are important sources of calcium, a deficiency of which leads to an increase in blood pressure. Thus, consuming enough milk and other dairy products will help in lowering the blood pressure; besides, it also boosts production of vitamin D, which not only helps strengthen your immune function but also lowers your blood pressure.
2. Salt free spices
The sodium in salts is a key ingredient that makes the blood pressure shoot upwards. It is thus wise that you cut down on as much of salt as possible. Ideally, it is advised that you stop buying premade seasonings and make your own salt free ones.
While sodium proves harmful for you, its close cousin potassium has exactly the opposite effect on blood pressure. Bananas prove a great source for potassium, besides being low in sodium. Thus, an addition of bananas in the diet will go a long way in ensuring control over blood pressure.
4. White potatoes
White potatoes make this list for the same reason as bananas, since they too are rich in potassium and contain little sodium. Add to that the fact that they are fat and cholesterol free, and you have the perfect carbohydrate nutrient for your blood pressure diet.
Soybeans are another great way to get the essential nutrients into your system without ingesting sodium. Besides, soybeans are also rich in potassium and magnesium.
Rich in lean proteins and vitamin D, eating fish as a substitute for the artery-clogging red meats will ensure that your heart and other circulatory organs stay fit. Most fish also contain omega-3 fatty acids, which help in lowering blood pressure.
Like fish, flaxseed too can give you the necessary dose of omega-3 fatty acids. Flaxseed oil thus proves a viable substitute for other cooking oils, and can be eaten as a meal as well. Take special note of it in case you’re vegetarian or vegan.
8. Oat Bran
Replacing other cereals with oat bran too is recommended for persons with hypertension, since it contains much lesser sodium than its counterparts. The high fiber content also proves beneficial for digestive health.
The leafy vegetable is a great source of potassium, magnesium and folates; besides containing a fair amount of calcium as well, all of which go a long way in reducing blood pressure.
10. Dark Chocolate
I’m sure this comes as a pleasant surprise to you, but by acting as a stress reliever, dark chocolate ensures that the blood pressure does not shoot up. Try eating it on days when you’re especially stressed, but remember to eat it in moderation, since it has a lot of calories.