High blood pressure, known as hypertension, is a health state that can factor into cardiovascular disease. If you don’t address high blood pressure, you have a greater risk of arterial wall hardening (atherosclerosis), resulting in a heart attack and stroke.
Clearly, high blood pressure is bad news. While medications can certainly help during elevated blood pressure states, it’s not the only solution.
While there are many potential ways to help maintain blood pressure levels, this article will focus on food and drink.
How Foods Affect Blood Pressure
The food we eat directly contributes to the pressure on our blood vessel walls. High blood pressure, after all, is caused by the blood itself. For the most part, blood pressure increases as a direct result of sodium intake. Fortunately, the amount of sodium we consume is something we all control.
When salt enters the body, it also enters the bloodstream. Water always follows salt in order to achieve “fluid balance” in the body. When water enters the bloodstream chasing salty blood, it increases the volume of blood in the body, and therefore, the pressure of this blood on the walls of blood vessels. Simply put, if you reduce the amount of salt in the body, you are likely to reduce the pressure on the walls of your blood vessels.
The foods that increase high blood pressure are the usual suspects: pizza, processed food, pickles, deli meat, processed bread, canned soup, burritos, and so on.
Basically, restaurant food and processed foods almost always pack in the sodium, for no other reason than salty food tastes good; it’s made to separate you from your money, not improve your health.
Foods That Lower Blood Pressure
So what kinds of food will reduce high blood pressure? For the most part, healthy alternatives to these unhealthy foods.
Citrus fruits are packed with vitamins and minerals that improve whole heart health, and they don’t contain lots of salt, so go ahead and pack those into your diet.
Fatty fish like salmon contain healthy fats and other chemicals that naturally contribute to the health of your blood vessels and decrease the risks associated with high blood pressure.
Green vegetable like Swiss chard, seeds, lentils, bean, and all other types of fresh vegetables contain fiber and heart-healthy nutrients that will give your body what it needs to maintain a healthy cardiovascular system, without all of the added salts, sugars, and fats that we find in processed foods.
Limit Your Intake of These Items
If you drink alcohol, consider reducing or eliminating your intake. Drinking temporarily increases blood pressure, but chronic abuse of alcohol causes chronic blood pressure effects. Instead, drink fresh water and tea, the latter of which appears to reduce blood pressure when part of a daily diet.
Supplements for Blood Pressure
It’s hard to make big changes to any diet quickly, so if you’re slowly setting off in the right direction, but haven’t implemented all of these changes yet, consider some supplements to help you potentially reduce your risk factors immediately. The following high quality supplements each affect blood pressure by a different mechanism. Try them out, with your doctor’s advice, to figure out which is the best for your body:
Boluoke from Canada RNA Biochemical contains an enzyme extract known as lumbrokinase that has been used for centuries in ancient and traditional medicine. Modern research suggests it may support cardiovascular health, normal clotting factors, and circulatory functions in the body’s brain, heart, and cells.
Nattokinase 50 Mg from Allergy Research Group is a natural supplement for circulation and blood flow support featuring nattokinase, an enzyme derived from boiled soybeans and Bacillus subtilis. This formula supports healthy coagulation of blood within normal levels, fibrinolytic activity, and it is vegetarian and non-irradiated. Vitamin K2 has been removed.
Pycnogenol 150 Mg from Healthy Origins comes from the trees from the Mediterranean region known as the Maritime Pines. Extracted from the bark of these trees is something that could help keep your circulatory system in shape.
Pycnogenol from Healthy Origins is a natural supplement made up of French Maritime Pine Bark extract intended to support good circulatory health.
Because it is rich in procyanidins, this product may also protect against free radicals while working in your body as an antioxidant.
We wish you the best in your fight against high blood pressure!