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Diet
Diet also plays a key role in helping
control high blood pressure, says Dr.
Shetty. “By following the right diet you
may reduce your blood pressure by a
few points in just two weeks,” she says,
and in fact, this is also known as the
‘Dash’ diet. “This is basically a dietary
approach to stop hypertension that is
lifelong to treat or prevent high blood
pressure,” she explains and it emphasizes
on vegetables, fruits and low fat dairy
foods as well as moderate amounts of
whole grams, fish, poultry and nuts. “Also
if you are older, above 51 years of age, or
have hypertension, diabetes or chronic
kidney disease, your salt intake has to be
reduced,” advises Dr. Shetty.
Also blood pressure rises as body weight
increases and in fact, obesity is a known
risk factor for developing high cholesterol
and diabetes, which in turn can lead to
heart disease. But the good news is that a
loss of as little as 4.5 kilograms can help to
lower blood pressure. One safe, effective
way to decrease blood pressure for all age
groups is to eat foods that work naturally
to dilate blood vessels so the heart doesn’t
have to work so hard.
Physical Activity
Regular physical activity is another
good step toward controlling or even
preventing high blood pressure. Start
with 30 minutes of moderate-level
activity, such as brisk walking, bicycling
or gardening on most—preferably
all—days of the week. The activity even
may be divided into three, 10-minute
periods each. For added benefit, these
moderate half-hours may be increased
or supplemented by regular, vigorous
exercise. Of course, prior to upping the
activity level, people should check with
their physicians, especially if they have
had heart trouble or a previous heart
attack, a family history of heart disease
at an early age, or other serious health
problems.
Foods That Are Good for
High Blood Pressure:
One banana also has at least 450
milligrams of potassium, nature’s most
powerful blood-pressure-lowering
medicine.
Another potassium powerhouse, the
avocado, contains 975 milligrams of
the mineral. It also delivers a variety of
other heart-healthy vitamins, minerals,
phytonutrients and monounsaturated
fat.
Adults who consume 1000 to 1500
milligrams of calcium a day in their
food reduce their risk of contracting
high blood pressure, according to
studies of the DASH diet.
This is a good food to help fight
hypertension because it acts as a
blood thinner. When chopped, it
also produces allicin, a compound
that has antibacterial and antifungal
properties.
These are a valuable source of
potassium, which helps lower blood
pressure, while remaining low in
sodium, which causes bloating.
Bananas:
Avocado:
Yogurt:
Garlic:
Potatoes:
H
Your chances of
developing high blood
pressure are also
higher if you:
• Are overweight
• Are a man over the age of 45
• Are a woman over the age of 55
• Have a family history of high blood
pressure
• Have pre-hypertension (that is,
blood pressure in the 120–139/80–
89 mmHg range)
Other things that can
raise blood pressure
include:
• Eating too much salt
• Drinking too much alcohol
• Not getting enough potassium in
your diet
• Not doing enough physical activity
• Taking certain medicines
• Having long-lasting stress
• Smoking (smoking can cause a
temporary rise in blood pressure)
Jan/Feb 2014
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