High blood pressure refers to a condition that is medically known as hypertension. Measurement of the pressure is expressed using two figures in millimeters; a high figure that represents systolic pressure (the force with which the heart pumps blood) and a low figure that represents diastolic pressure (the resistance that blood encounters while it flows through blood vessels).
While a blood pressure reading of 140/90mmHg and above means a high pressure of blood, a reading of 90/60mmHg means a low pressure of blood. The ideal reading of blood pressure should be between the low and high-pressure readings.
Although both low and high-pressure readings are not good for your health, high pressure turns out to be riskier. This is because it puts you at high risk of developing such serious health conditions as heart failure, heart disease, stroke and kidney disease among other diseases.
What Causes High Blood Pressure?
The cause or causes of high blood pressure are not known. However, there are certain risk factors that increase your risk of developing the condition;
- You drink alcohol and caffeinated drinks on a regular basis.
- If you smoke.
- You are 65 years and above.
- You are overweight.
- If you are of either Caribbean or African descent.
- Lack of physical exercise.
- If you are used to eating food with a lot of salt.
- If you fail to get sufficient sleep on a regular basis.
The most effective way of preventing high blood pressure is living a healthy lifestyle. This involves avoiding some of the avoidable risk factors. Although there are medications for the condition, their side effects can be the cause of other health problems. Luckily, there are foods that are effective in lowering and maintain ideal blood pressure.
Ripe avocado fruit is rich in magnesium, potassium, and calcium. This is in addition to monounsaturated fats and carotenoids. All these nutrients make your heart healthy, allowing it to pump blood throughout your body efficiently. Consider eating half of ripe avocado fruit at least once a day if you have high blood pressure to lower it.
Pork and in particular pork tendon is lean meat that is rich in potassium and magnesium. Unlike beef, pork tendon does not contain saturated fats that inhibit smooth flow of blood through blood vessels, leading to high blood pressure.
4. White Beans
White beans are a good alternative to meat. In addition to being a good source of protein, eating white beans provides your body with sufficient amounts of magnesium and potassium. Consider including white beans in your regular diet to lower and maintain healthy high blood pressure.
Ripe kiwis are very good sources of vitamin C, potassium, magnesium and calcium. These are vital nutrients that act to promote good health of your heart. The good thing with Kiwifruit is that it is available throughout the year. Consider eating kiwis at least twice a week to lower and maintain ideal blood pressure.
Like many other types of fish, eating tilapia provides your body with sufficient amounts of potassium and magnesium. Unlike other types of fish, however, tilapia is generally free of environmental toxins. This makes it the ideal type of fish to eat for the purpose of lowering high blood pressure.
7. Plain Yogurt
Consider making your own fat-free yogurt at home if you have high blood pressure. It is rich in calcium, potassium, and magnesium. These are vital nutrients that play the very important role of promoting ideal blood pressure.
Eating a ripe banana a day goes a long way in lowering high blood pressure. In addition to providing your body with potassium, magnesium, and calcium, eating ripe bananas also helps in lowering the activity of stress hormones, which is another factor that contributes to high blood pressure.
Like with all the above foods, peaches are very rich in calcium, potassium, and magnesium. You may also use nectarines just in case you are unable to find peaches easily.
Consider eating either cooked or raw kale for high blood pressure. The delicate leaves are the most ideal. In addition to providing your body with magnesium, potassium, and calcium, kale contains powerful antioxidants and alpha-linolenic acid, nutrients, and elements that help clean your blood and blood vessels.
Eating Broccoli does not only help in lowering high blood pressure. In addition to having sufficient amounts of calcium, potassium, and magnesium, Broccoli also contains glucosinolates, a powerful phytonutrient that is very effective in fighting cancerous cells.
Having high blood pressure can be very devastating. This is why it is important to have your blood pressure checked at least twice in a year. This makes it possible for you to take remedial measures early enough should you realize that it is increasing. Including the above foods in your regular diet if you already have high blood pressure goes a long way in lowering and maintaining the pressure at the ideal level.