Hypertension is a prevailing,life-threatening health disorder that is often called high blood pressure and affects millions of people worldwide. When the pressure of the blood in the blood vessels exceeds 140/90 mmHg or higher, the person is said to be suffering from hypertension and is termed hypertensive. This high blood pressure forces your heart to work harder in order to pump blood to the rest of your body. Ultimately, your left ventricle thickens, and the chances of a heart attack increase twofold. This disease is often called a “silent killer “because often its symptoms go on without being diagnosed, putting an increased risk to heart functioning. Hypertension not only affects one’s heart; it is a disease that affects the other major organs of the body, like the kidney, as well. This hazardous state of bodily health can be due to a number of reasons, but all those reasons are ultimately linked to inappropriate dietary choices and poor lifestyle patterns. Hypertension has to be treated with a lot of caution in order to prevent the situation from getting worse. A proper dietary pattern and some lifestyle modifications will prove remarkable in treating hypertension
Foods to treat hypertension:
- Salmon: It is rich in omega 3 fatty acids, which plays an important role in reducing blood pressure and bringing it to a normal value
- Pumpkin seeds: They are loaded with magnesium, which not only helps to lower but also regulate the blood pressure. Magnesium is also associated with lower risk of strokes and heart diseases
- Walnuts : They are packed with alpha linoleic acid which helps to lower the blood pressure and decrease the risk of cardiovascular diseases
- Almonds: They are loaded with magnesium. One to two servings of almonds to your diet can help you meet the recommended daily magnesium intake, which may have positive effects on your health. Low magnesium levels are strongly linked to high blood pressure, indicating that almonds can help manage blood pressure.
- Legumes : They are a rich source of plant protein with a unique amino acid profile assumed to impart significant BP-lowering effects, such as vasodilatation, owing to their high arginine content
- Whole grains: They help increase potassium levels in body. Increased potassium levels help to decrease blood pressure
- Olive oil: contains a high concentration of polyphenols. Polyphenols can improve the function of the endothelium, the thin membrane that lines the heart and blood vessels.
- Yogurt. It contains magnesium, which is good for high blood pressure. Calcium is also there in yogurt which helps in muscle contraction, which is good for the heart muscles. Another factor which can indirectly help in controlling blood pressure
Fruits that treat high blood pressure:
- Bananas: They are loaded with potassium. Potassium reduces the effects of sodium and alleviates tension in the walls of the blood vessels
- Berries: They are loaded with flavanoids. consuming these compounds might prevent hypertension and help lower blood pressure
- Watermelon: contains an amino acid called citrulline. The body converts citrulline to arginine, and this helps the body produce nitric oxide, a gas that relaxes blood vessels and encourages flexibility in arteries. These effects aid the flow of blood, which can lower high blood pressure
- Kiwi: Potassium present in kiwi help to regulate blood pressure
- Apple: Apples are full of polyphenols and potassium, aka blood pressure-lowering elements.
- Citrus fruits : They’re loaded with vitamins, minerals, and plant compounds that could help keep your heart healthy by reducing risk factors for heart disease like high blood pressure
Vegetables that treat blood pressure:
- Spinach: It is loaded with antioxidants, potassium ,calcium ,magnesium which lowers blood pressure
- Sweet potatoes: They are loaded with potassium .High potassium helps you to excrete more sodium and maintains your blood pressure
- Cabbage: Potassium is a mineral and various electrolyte that are present in cabbage helps your body control blood pressure.
Herbs that Treat High Blood Pressure:
- Saffron: safranal acts on GABAA receptors that modulate peripheral resistance or cardiac output, which also might contribute to its hypotensive effect
- Garlic: By inhibiting angiotensin, allicin allows your blood to flow freely and easily, reducing your blood pressure
- Lemon grass : The diuretic activity of lemon grass is responsible for decrease in blood pressure
Life Style Modifications to Treat Hypertension
- Try to consume well balanced diet that is low in salt
- Limit the consumption of alcohol
- Manage your stress levels
- Don’t smoke
- Take your prescribed medications properly.
- Exercise regularly at least 30 minutes daily
- Maintain a healthy weight
Dash Diet to Treat Hypertension:
- Use salt-free spices or flavorings instead of salt.
- Don’t add salt when cooking rice, pasta or hot cereal.
- Choose plain fresh or frozen vegetables.
- Eat more home cooked food
- Don’t choose food with extra added salt
- Choose food containing less salt contained in it
- Choose lean meat
- Choose skinless poultry
- Note: The Article is written by Miss Mahrukh Maqbool who is an expert in the field of Food and Nutrition.