↑ Return to Articles

High Blood Pressure: DASHing to Reduced Hypertension

High blood pressure is a serious condition that requires us to pay urgent attention to our diet and lifestyles. lower high blood pressure naturallyAlthough high blood pressure is usually related to the ageing process in which our metabolic rate slows, there are certain foods that make our blood pressure shoot up to alarming levels. Making some simple changes to our lifestyle can reduce our hypertension to within normal levels, without taking the fun out of life.

We become what we eat

We are what we eat and our poor “Western” diet is helping us dig our early graves with our teeth. That can be changed simply by following the advice in the Dietary Approaches to Stopping Hypertension system (DASH) diet), which has been shown to reduce high blood pressure to normal levels in as little as two to three weeks.

Having a healthy diet that is rich in fresh fruit and vegetables, oily fish and lean white meat, combined with a healthy lifestyle will reduce our high blood pressure to healthy levels.

Improve your diet to lower your high blood pressure

That means greatly reducing or eliminating our consumption of salty foods or foods that are high in sodium. These are usually highly processed foods that also contain a lot of fat. We should look upon these foods as an occasional treat, not an every day food item. As sodium can make our hypertension levels shoot up, it would be wise to reduce the amount of salt used in our cooking and avoid adding salt at the table. The DASH diet recommends that we consume no more than 1500mg of sodium a day. That is about half a teaspoonful.

Foods to avoid

We should also reduce the amount of saturated fats and trans fats in our diet. Whilst fat does not directly cause high blood pressure, the extra calories in fat can cause you to put on weight, it is that extra weight that increases our hypertension. That does not mean we cannot have red meat or dairy products, it is just that these should be eaten occasionally. The better choices will always be white meat and fish. Hypertension patients are advised to follow a diet that is moderately high in protein.

High blood pressure patients should avoid butter. Choose a low fat spread made from olive oil, for example that is low in saturated fat, tran’s fats and sodium but is high in unsaturated fats. Other foods that should be avoided are smoked meats, cured meats, sodium based seasonings, salted snacks, picked foods, cheese and cheese spreads, fatty foods and sodas. Reducing our alcohol consumption and quitting smoking will also greatly help.

[important][/important]Adopting the DASH dietary system and a healthier lifestyle can help lower your blood pressure to normal levels naturally.

 

© Robert Reddin

Back to index

Image courtesy FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Recommended Reading