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Focus on these four foods for healthier blood pressure readings

by , 15 January 2018
Focus on these four foods for healthier blood pressure readings
One in every three adults suffer from high blood pressure. While there are a number of common drugs and medications that treat the condition, there's a simpler, safer way to do it - by adjusting your diet.

Many people with high blood pressure follow the DASH (Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension) diet to control their condition. The DASH diet emphasises low glycaemic carbs and nutrients like fibre, calcium, potassium and magnesium, while reducing sodium and saturated fats. But this diet isn't the only option for high blood pressure patients…

A 2017 study published in the Journal of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics showed that participants improved their readings when they focused on certain foods, such as fruits, nuts, seeds and fish. Here are four more heart-healthy foods to stock up on that are easy to incorporate into your daily meals.

Eat these four foods every day to lower your blood pressure

#1: Oranges
Oranges are chockfull of potassium, a key mineral in the DASH diet. Interestingly, oranges are of the highest potassium foods that are available all year-round. They also contain hesperidin, a flavonoid linked to a reduction in blood pressure and heart disease risk. What’s more, a study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition suggests that hesperidin may help maintain healthy blood pressure and blood vessel function in overweight men when they consume orange juice daily.

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#2: Purple grapes
Concord grapes are purple grapes that hail from the specific cold northern regions of the United States. Packed with polyphenols, they’re well-known to boost your heart health. These grapes may contain more polyphenols, such as anthocyanins, catechin, epicatechin, and quercetin, than any other type. Research published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition reported improved night-time blood pressure in people with pre-hypertension when they drank Concord grape juice before bedtime for eight weeks.
 
#3: Pistachios
You already know that eating more nuts is good for your health, but which ones, exactly? A meta-analysis published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition says pistachios are most effective in reducing blood pressure. These nuts are full of essential nutrients, including fibre, potassium and magnesium, which all play a role in promoting healthy blood pressure. Interesting fact? A handful of pistachios contains more potassium than a banana, along with a healthy dose of polyphenols and carotenoids.
 
#4: Lentils
Last but not least on the list is lentils – one of the ‘pulses’ along with chickpeas, split peas, black beans and pinto beans. Brimming with fibre and potassium, lentils are a superstar of the DASH diet. A body of research suggests a strong relationships between eating lentils and improved blood pressure. A study published in the British Journal of Nutrition, even independently singled out lentils as attenuating blood pressure.
 
Be sure to fill your trolley with these blood pressure-lowering foods the next time you go shopping!

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