Worried About Blood Pressure? Have These 6 Foods Ready At Your Pantry

High blood pressure is one of the most common and preventable causes of heart disease. A billion people in the world reportedly have this non-communicable disease and many employ a series of methods to keep it under wraps, from lifestyle modifications to prescribed medications such as angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitors. While the thought of being on maintenance medication can seem like such a hassle, know that lifestyle modifications, particularly nutrition and physical activity, are always a good option to keep your blood pressure in check.

Having a nutrient-filled and balanced diet is one of the main keys to having healthy blood pressure. A diet rich in nutrients such as potassium and magnesium is proven to be effective in lowering blood pressure. Read below to see the top 10 foods you can include in your diet to help lower blood pressure:

1. Citrus Fruits

By this time you are probably well-acquainted with citrus fruits. Popular examples include oranges and grapefruits and these fruits are filled with nutrients and compounds that reduce heart disease risk factors. If you are seeking to also lose weight while keeping your blood pressure in check. According to a study, daily intake of lemon juice combined with walking resulted in reduced systolic blood pressure due to the flavonoid and citric acid content of lemons.

Drinking orange and grapefruit juice helps reduce blood pressure. However, if you are looking to try grapefruit juice, consult with a specialist first since grapefruit can intervene with blood-pressure medications.

Calories: 1 large orange=87kcal

RDA: 60-70mg (Vitamin C)

Upper Limit: 1000 mg

2. Carrots

Carrots are a recurring favorite in many diets across the world. Carrots are rich in phenolic compounds that help relax blood vessels and reduce inflammation. Examples of phenolic compounds include chlorogenic, p-coumaric, and caffeic acids A study was able to prove that eating raw carrots can cause a notable drop in the blood pressure levels. If you’re a fan of carrot juice, another study conducted showed that consistent drinking of 16 oz of carrot juice has led to systolic blood pressure reductions.

Calories: 100 g (2 small to medium carrots, raw)=41 kcal

RDA: 433-499 µgRE (Vitamin A)

Upper Limit: 3000 µgRE

3. Broccoli

Vegetables are a staple whenever we’re on a weight loss diet or even a weight gain diet. Broccoli is one of the most popular vegetables we turn into fancy dishes to balance a delicious meal and stay healthy. Apart from other health benefits, broccoli is noted for helping lower blood pressure. Broccoli is rich in antioxidants that help increase nitric oxide levels and enhance blood vessel function.

According to one study, people who consumed 4 or more servings of broccoli had lower blood pressures compared to those who consumed it sparingly.

Calories: 148 g (1 medium stalk, raw)=45 kcal

RDA: 60-70mg (Vitamin C)

Upper Limit: 1000 mg

4. Spinach

Another popular vegetable that is often incorporated in dishes is spinach. Spinach is rich in antioxidants, potassium, magnesium, calcium, and nitrates, making it optimal for fighting high blood pressure. Studies prove that participants who consumed 17 oz of spinach soup for a week found reductions in their systolic and diastolic blood pressures. Apart from lowering blood pressure, spinach is also highly effective in decreasing artery stiffness which can help improve heart health.

Calories: 100 g (3 cups, raw)=23 kcal

RDA: 433-499 µgRE (Vitamin A), 60-70mg (Vitamin C), 53-61µg (Vitamin K)

Upper Limit: 1000 mg (Vitamin C), 433-499 µgRE (Vitamin A)

5. Tomatoes

Nothing could be more versatile than tomatoes. We use tomatoes for salads, soups, and even as sauces for our favorite dishes. Did you know that there’s more to the tomato than just an ingredient? Tomatoes are rich in potassium and lycopene which is linked to heart health benefits, the frequent consumption of which reduces heart disease factors such as high blood pressure.

A recent study has shown that the regular consumption of tomatoes and other tomato products can help improve blood pressure, slimming the chances of suffering from heart-disease.

Calories: 1 large tomato =33 kcal

RDA: 60-70mg (Vitamin C)

Upper Limit: 1000 mg (Vitamin C)

6. Berries

Berries are a favorite addition to any breakfast dish or even as healthy snacks on their own, not to mention they’re often the ingredients to our favorite fruit shakes. Berries have an array of impressive health benefits, one of which is the ability to reduce heart disease risk factors such as hypertension. Berries are rich in antioxidants, including anthocyanins which increase nitric oxide levels in the blood, reducing production of blood vessel restricting molecules. While there hasn’t been any human studies on this yet, the health benefits of berries are still noteworthy.

Calories: 1/2 cup berries=57 kcal

RDA: 60-70mg (Vitamin C)

Upper Limit: 1000 mg (Vitamin C)

Hypertension is a disease nobody wants to live with. The dangers it presents along with the maintenance required just to keep your blood pressure at its optimal level can reduce the overall quality of one’s life. Whether you are seeking to lose weight or get healthy, know that an overall lifestyle change is key to reaching your goals.

Do you wish to lose or gain weight? Have you thought of improving your overall health, including normalizing your blood pressure and blood sugar? If so, know that it is best to get in touch with a weight specialist and a registered nutritionist dietitian who can guide you towards the right path in achieving your goals. These professionals can craft personalized plans based on your individual needs, taking every circumstance into account to ensure that you enjoy lasting changes. Schedule a consultation with a weight loss specialist right now.