Hypertension or high blood pressure is a health condition that can result in irreversible complications and sometimes even death if left unchecked. A condition that commonly occurs in smokers, older people, overweight or inactive people, alcoholics or people with fatty diets, hypertension is influenced by poor lifestyle and diet choices. Salt is one of the biggest enemies when it comes to blood pressure,followed by excessive stress and other factors such as chronic kidney disease or thyroid issues. It is possible to effectively control the blood pressure by eating mindfully, and doing so will spare the heart from overworking itself to the point of no return.
The high potassium content found in bananas help counter the ill effects of sodium, one of the most common causes of high blood pressure. Similarly, other foods rich in potassium contribute towards goodheart health and reduce the risk developing heart disease. One to two bananas per day give the body the potassium it requires.
This green leafy super food is rich in folate, contains potassium and magnesium, and is full of antioxidants, all of which contribute towards maintaining blood pressure levels. Spinach can easily be enjoyed in salads or sandwiches or in the form of the much loved dishes like palak paneer.
A staple in the Indian kitchen, garlic is a hero when it comes to reducing high blood pressure. Rich in sulfur, with anti-inflammatory properties, garlic helps the arteries relax while also fighting the fat deposits in the heart, thereby lowering blood pressure.
Tomatoes contain an antioxidant called Lycopene that helps combat high blood pressure. It also has carotenoids that lower the risk of developing heart disease. Tomatoes can easily be enjoyed be consumed as part of a salad, as soup or as juice.
Contrary to popular belief, nuts such as almond are good for controlling blood pressure. Almond contains good fat and protein, which helps reduce cholesterol and hypertension. Monounsaturated fatin almonds help ease inflamed arteries. These nuts can be munched on as an evening snack.
6. Olive Oil
Olive oil is rich in antioxidants called polyphenols and oleic acids that help control blood pressure. Oliveoil can be drizzled over salads and pastas in order to reap its benefits. Olive oil is generally in two forms-Virgin and extra virgin. One has to be extra careful in choosing the oil.People with Chronic kidney disease (CKD) or associated diseases should be careful in the consumption of high potassium food.
Stringent dietician/ Doctor Supervision is a must for such patients.High blood pressure does not present with obvious symptoms and can go by undetected until it is too late. With enough care and precaution, hypertension can easily be avoided.
(Please Note: In case of comorbidities, consult your physician or expert dietician for further advice.)
This article was originally published on Practo Health Feed by Dr. Raja Selvarajan, Diabetologist