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High blood pressure, or hypertension, is a devastating illness that has claimed many, many lives. It has been established as a link to numerous illnesses which are also quite fatal, or at least severely debilitating. It affects an avoidably large portion of the population, mostly because of the unhealthy nature of the diet that has been consumed over decades.
More information is being discovered about the effects and causes of hypertension and how we might counter it. Like diabetes, more awareness is being engendered because the illness has now managed a very wide coverage. Also like diabetes, once the body has crossed a certain threshold, the effects of the disease are to be dealt with for the rest of your life. It is also beginning to affect men and women of younger ages, which results in a drastic reduction in longevity.
Here, we’ll talk about what high blood pressure is, the calamitous effects it can have on your body, the foods that suit a hypertension patient and those that don’t. Even if you yourself don’t suffer from hypertension, it would do well to pay attention to the diet you should follow, because hypertension is very likely with modern lifestyles.
What is High Blood Pressure?
High blood pressure is quite self-explanatory - it’s an increase in the pressure that heart operates with to deliver blood to the rest of your body. This naturally happens to everyone over time, as the heart needs to work harder to do its job as time passes, but an unnaturally high blood pressure puts more strain on the heart and the body, and this is occurring to people of younger ages. Typically, the blood pressure increases after the age of 50.
There are a few different causes for high blood pressure and much of it has to do with the diet. Excess salt intake is one major contributing factor towards high blood pressure. Coming close behind is a diet lacking in fruits and vegetables.
Lifestyle also plays a role in the development of hypertension. A lack of exercise and heavy alcohol consumption are also known factors.
Symptoms and Effects
There are no unique and distinguishing signs of high blood pressure. A check up is necessary to know if one has high blood pressure and it is possible for someone in good health to show high blood pressure on a particular day. Consistently high blood pressure is the only sign of certainty.
As for the general symptoms, the one that is likely to be experienced first is a headache. This is usually accompanied by nausea, chest pain, dizziness and blurred vision. When patients report for check up, it’s usually a little later than could be wished for. Since hypertension is a sneaky disease, it makes it even more important that we pay attention to what we eat and the patterns of living that we follow.
Foods To Eat And Avoid
Fruits, vegetables and whole grains will form the majority of your meals, if you suffer from high blood pressure. Even if you don’t the foods listed below are nutritious additions or replacement for your current dishes.
Raisins have many benefits, but for hypertension patients, the news is that it can lower your blood pressure! Coupled with soymilk, it is extra effective. A definite recommendation.
High fiber like Oatmeal gives you a lot of energy, keeps your blood sugar levels in check and keeps you full. It does everything a breakfast should do without the need for salt. It’s a great choice for everybody!
Leafy vegetables contain potassium and a good potassium to sodium ratio is important for healthy blood pressure levels. Spinach and kale are good vegetables to have on your plate for regulations on blood pressure.
Fruits are your source of vitamins and minerals and work with vegetables to police your blood pressure. Two cups of fruits will suffice.
Concerning the foods and ingredients you should be avoiding, salt is your number 1 enemy. You must reduce your salt intake to as low as possible. It will impact the flavour of your food, but you can choose healthier salt options as well, like low sodium salt. Avoid drinking alcohol.
Follow these instructions and your heart will be in much better shape!
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