What is blood pressure?
Blood pressure is the amount of force required to pump the blood so it can circulate through the body.
Two different measures are noted for blood pressure, systolic blood pressure, which is the force with which the heart drives the blood out with high pressure, and diastolic blood pressure, which is the relaxation of the heart between the forces and is the minimal pressure on blood vessels.
- They are displayed as a ratio of systolic to diastolic (for example. 120/80 mmHg), and their unit is millimeters of mercury (mmHg).
- The normal and healthy blood pressure range is from 90/60 mmHg and 120/80 mmHg.
- High blood pressure (hypertension) constitutes the drastic increase in measurement of blood pressure from 140/90 mmHg or even higher and may lead to another heart disease, like stroke.
Foods for High Blood pressure
The most prevalent heart disease at risk of developing is hypertension or high blood pressure. High blood pressure has been measured in over 1 billion people, meaning the values of systolic blood pressure (SBP) is about 130mm Hg or more, and diastolic blood pressure (DBP) is about 80 mm Hg or more than that value.
Blood pressure medications used to control blood pressure includes angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitors.
Even changes in lifestyle or alteration in diet can also promote good blood pressure ranges and lower risks of heart disease. People with high blood pressure, even those on medications related to blood pressure, are required to improve their diet and make it more nutritious for their health.
A healthy heart is gained with a healthy diet since it helps to maintain good ranges of blood pressure. Include those substances in your diet that contain potassium and magnesium, as they are beneficial for lowering blood pressure levels.
1. Citrus fruits
Citrus fruits like oranges, lemons, and grapefruit are packed with blood lowering benefits.
Heart disease risks for blood pressure are lowered by consuming these citrus fruits that are abundant in minerals, vitamins, and plant compound, that maintain your health.
Researches have revealed that drinking orange and grapefruit juice can help to decrease blood pressure levels.
However, grapefruit and its juice can interact with medications for blood pressure, which is why it is important to consult your doctor before adding this fruit to your diet.
2. Salmon and other fatty fish
Omega-3 fats have been found to be great for health-related issues, which are rich in fatty fish. Fats present in it helps to decrease blood pressure by healing inflammation and inhibiting the production of oxylipins which constricts blood vessel.
Studies show that a large consumption of omega-3 fatty fish does decrease blood pressure.
3. Swiss chard
Swiss chard is a leafy green vegetable that contains nutrients that helps to regulate blood pressure, like potassium and magnesium.
One cup (145 grams) of chard that has been prepared gives about 17% of potassium and 30% of magnesium. Magnesium is important to control blood pressure.
Many different mechanisms are involved for lowering blood pressure, including by portraying calcium channel blocker, which inhibits the transport of calcium into heart and arterial cells, relaxing the blood vessels.
4. Pumpkin seeds
They contain concentrated amounts of nutrients in them for controlling blood pressure, like potassium, magnesium, and arginine, an amino acid that helps to develop nitric oxide, which causes relaxation of the blood vessel and lowers blood pressure.
Another good and strong solution for high blood pressure is the use of Pumpkin seed oil.
5. Beans and lentils
Magnesium, fibers, and potassium are abundantly present in lentils and beans that help to maintain blood pressure.
Several studies have suggested that using and eating lentils and beans have helped in maintaining high blood pressure to normal levels.
Several health uses have been related to the use of berries, like maintaining heart blood pressure by minimizing the risk factors of heart disease.
Berries contain lots of antioxidants, even anthocyanins, responsible for painting the berry with a rich color.
Anthocyanins help to produce more nitric oxide, which restricts the development of substances that causes blood vessel constriction, thus helping in lowering blood pressure.
More research is required to fully know the potential of what benefits can be obtained through which mechanisms. Some berries that work to decrease blood pressure are chokeberries, raspberries, strawberries, cloudberries, and blueberries.
Carrots, which are sweet, nutritious, and very crunchy, are a staple vegetable of many people. Carrots contain large amounts of phenolic compounds like chlorogenic, caffeic acids, and p-coumaric, responsible for relaxing blood vessels and curing inflammation, all of which works to reduce blood pressure levels.
Carrots can be consumed in either cooked or raw form, but it is considered more beneficial in its raw form for dealing with blood pressure. A study of 2,195 people, having age 40-59 when consumed raw carrot, were found to have lower levels of blood pressure.
Ways to control high blood pressure without medication
1. Lose extra pounds and watch your waistline
Obesity often leads to elevated blood pressure. Your sleep is affected due to being overweight, which is sleep apnea that also increases your blood pressure.
Weight loss is a compelling exercise and lifestyle choice that helps to control blood pressure. If you are overweight or obese, losing a few pounds will help you to control your blood pressure. With every kilogram (about 2.2 pounds) that you lose in weight, about 1 millimeter of mercury (mm Hg) is seen to have decreased in blood pressure readings.
- Women, if their waist measurement is more than 35 inches (89 centimeters), are considered at risk.
- Men, if their waist measurement is more than 40 inches (102 centimeters), are considered at risk.
2. Exercise regularly
People with high blood pressure can maintain their blood pressure with the normal exercise of about 30 minutes a few days or 150 minutes per week, which can effectively lower 5 to 8 mm Hg of blood pressure.
However, being regular is the key here because stopping the exercise will shoot your blood pressure right up.
Hypertension can be prevented with exercise, even for increased blood pressure. But with already hypertension present, exercise will help you to control it and bring it back to normal ranges.
3. Reduce sodium in your diet
Lowering sodium consumption in your diet can enhance your heart health and lower blood pressure to about 5 to 6 mm Hg if you do suffer from high blood pressure.
- Read food labels. Try to get food that is low in sodium or its alternatives than the foods or drinks that you usually get.
- Eat fewer processed foods. Sodium is usually added to foods during processing, even though only a small amount is found naturally.
- Don’t add salt. Use alternates of salts, like herbs or spices, for flavoring the food because a single teaspoon of salt consists of 2,300 mg of sodium.
- Ease into it. If it is hard for you to totally cut off sodium, then try gradually reducing it little by little since your palate can adjust with it in time.
4. Limit the amount of alcohol you drink
Alcohol can have beneficial effects as well as bad effects on your health. Drinking alcohol in moderate amounts, like one drink per day for women and two drinks per day for men, can help to reduce your blood pressure by about 4 mm Hg.
A single drink qualifies as five ounces of wine, 12 ounces of beer, or 1.5 ounces of 80-proof liquor.
If you drink large quantities of alcohol, the protective nature is gone.
Consuming more alcohol than is considered normal elevates blood pressure levels. Blood pressure medications also lose their potency when combined with alcohol use.
- Quit smoking
When you smoke a cigarette, your blood pressure remains elevated for a few minutes even after you stop.
If you quit smoking cigarettes, it leads to normalization of your blood pressure levels and returns to your normal health. People who continue smoking do not live as long as those who quit.
- Cut back on caffeine
Discussion about the effects of caffeine on blood pressure is still underway. Blood pressure becomes high in people who sometimes take caffeine to about 10 mm Hg. However, those who regularly drink coffee may show little to no effects related to their blood pressure.
The effect of long-term use of caffeine on blood pressure is still unclear, but it still shows a minor increase in blood pressure, though.
7. Reduce stress
High blood pressure occurs as a result of chronic stress. More studies should be conducted to figure out the influence of stress on blood pressure. High blood pressure can also increase if you do not handle stress sometimes by eating unhealthy food, smoking, or drinking alcohol.
Note all the factors that participate in you feeling stressed out, like office, friends, family, finances, or illness.
After figuring out the reasons for your stress, work on how to remove those reasons so you can feel free and relaxed again.
8. Monitor your blood pressure at home and see your doctor regularly
Monitoring your blood pressure even in-home helps you to stay efficient in altering your lifestyle according to the needs of your health and keeps your doctor in the loop about your progressing condition too.
You can get a blood pressure monitor without needing a prescription. It is better to consult your doctor before you start monitoring at home too.
Your risk of getting heart disease can be lowered, and blood pressure levels can be maintained when you have a healthy diet plan and lifestyle.
Research suggests that keeping some specific food items in your diet plans like green leafy vegetables, citrus fruits, beans, seeds, lentils, carrots, berries, and fatty fish can help you to achieve good healthy levels of blood pressure.