10 Best Foods For Hypertension
10 Best Foods For Hypertension
High blood pressure or hypertension is a major risk factor for heart disease, but it can also be prevented (1). At least a billion people all over the world have hypertension (2). Blood pressure levels can be reduced with medications such as angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitors. Modification to one’s lifestyle as well as dietary modifications can also reduce one’s risk for heart disease.
Eating a healthy diet is very important for people with high blood pressure, and this includes people on blood-pressure-lowering medications (1). A healthy diet is vital to lowering blood pressure. Studies have shown that adding some foods to your diet, especially foods that are rich in magnesium and potassium can help reduce your blood pressure levels (1, 3). The following are the 10 best foods for hypertension.
1. CITRUS FRUITS
Citrus fruits, such as oranges, grapefruit, and lemons have very potent blood-pressure-lowering effects. They contain plenty of vitamins, phytochemicals, and minerals that maintain your heart health by reducing heart disease risk factors (4).
2. SALMON AND FATTY FISH
Fatty fish are a major source of omega-3 fats. They’re very beneficial to heart health. These fats reduce blood pressure levels through their anti-inflammatory effects. They also decrease the levels of oxylipins in the blood (4). Studies have also found that intake of fatty fish rich in omega-3 helps in blood pressure lowering. A study involving 2036 healthy people found that those who had very high levels of omega-3 fats in their blood had very low systolic blood pressure and diastolic blood pressure compared to those with low blood levels of omega-3 fats. A high intake of Omega-3 is associated with a low risk of hypertension as well (5, 6).
3. SWISS CHARD
Swiss chard is a green vegetable loaded with nutrients that help in regulating blood pressure. Among these nutrients are potassium and magnesium. You can get 17% of your daily potassium needs from a cup of cooked chard. The same amount also gives you 30% of your daily magnesium needs (7). Magnesium is an important blood pressure regulator. It acts as a natural calcium channel blocker, inhibiting the movement of calcium ions into the heart and the cells of the artery, thus promoting blood vessel relaxation (8).
4. PUMPKIN SEEDS
Pumpkin seeds aren’t big, but they are warehouses of nutrients. They contain plenty of magnesium, arginine, and potassium. These nutrients play very important roles in blood pressure control. Arginine for instance is an amino acid, it stimulates the production of nitric oxide, which is necessary for the reduction of blood pressure, and relaxation of blood vessels (9, 10, 11).
5. LENTILS AND BEANS
Lentils and beans are rich in blood pressure-regulating nutrients, like potassium, magnesium, and fiber. Some studies have shown that these foods may have blood-pressure-lowering effects. A study involving 554 subjects found that lentils and beans caused a significant drop in systolic blood pressure in both hypertensive and non-hypertensive people (12).
Amaranth is a whole grain. Eating such foods may help to reduce your blood pressure. Many studies have shown that these 10 best foods, in particular, whole grain diets may decrease your risk of high blood pressure. In a study review, it was discovered that 30g of whole grains consumed daily reduced the risk of high blood pressure by 8% (13). Amaranth is rich in magnesium. A cup of cooked amaranth will provide you with 38% of your recommended daily intake for magnesium (14).
Pistachios are nutritious, and intake of pistachios is associated with healthy blood pressure levels. Pistachios contain many heart-friendly nutrients, as well as nutrients that are essential for blood pressure regulation, such as potassium (15). A study review found that of all the nuts listed in the review, pistachio had the most potent effect on reducing diastolic and systolic blood pressure (16).
Carrots are sweet, nutritious, very crunchy, and very well-fitted among the 10 best foods. They are a staple vegetable in many diets. They contain plenty of phenolic compounds, including caffeic acids, chlorogenic acids, and p-coumaric that relaxes blood vessels, reduce inflammation, and lower blood pressure levels (17).
Celery is a vegetable that has potent blood-pressure-lowering effects. It contains phthalides, a group of compounds that enhance blood vessel relaxation and lowering of blood pressure (18).
Tomato contains a lot of nutrients, including lycopene and potassium. Lycopene is a carotenoid pigment. Lycopene has beneficial effects on heart health, and foods that are rich in this nutrient may lower your risk of heart disease, like blood pressure (19).
WHAT’S THE CONCLUSION?
A healthy diet is important when it comes to lowering your blood pressure. It is even more effective when combined with other lifestyle modifications. Studies have shown that adding some foods to your diets, like berries, beans, greens, seeds, citrus fruits, fatty fish, and carrots may help maintain your blood pressure at optimal levels, and these 10 best foods are just what can help. If you are hypertensive or you want to maintain your blood pressure at healthy levels, then try adding some of the foods listed here to your diet.