High blood pressure is extremely bad for your health. The adverse effects of hypertension are well known. It leads to stroke and cardiovascular ailments. Diet plays an important role in preventing high blood pressure. Although, genetic factors are believed to be responsible for hypertension, but studies have shown that by following a healthy lifestyle you can significantly reduce the risk of high blood pressure even if this problem runs in your family.
Normal body weight
Obese and overweight individuals are more prone to hypertension than lean people are. Through regular exercise and healthy diet, you should keep your body mass index less than 25. To reduce the risk of hypertension, you should exercise regularly for at least 30 minutes.
Diet plays an important role in preventing hypertension. DASH or Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension is found to be effective in keeping your blood pressure under control. DASH diet plan includes high intake of fruits, vegetables, whole grains and low fat dairy products. You should reduce intake of salt, sugar and saturated fat.
Eat more vegetables
Vegetables are an important ingredient of the high blood pressure reducing diet. According to a recent study, plant protein plays an important role in reducing the blood pressure level. Plant protein comprises primarily of glutamic acid. Glutamic acid comprises nearly 23 percent of the total amino acids present in the body of individuals who are primarily vegetable eaters.
The amount of glutamic acid is lower among animal protein eaters.
Researchers have found that 5 percent increase in glutamic acid in the diet could reduce the systolic blood pressure, which is the highest blood pressure reading, by up to 3 points. The diastolic or the bottom blood pressure reading could be reduced by 1 to 1.6 points with similar amount of glutamic acid intake. To prevent hypertension, you should increase your vegetable consumption significantly.
Limit salt intake
Excess sodium that we get from the table salt helps to lift your blood pressure level. A hypertension patient is always advised to limit their salt consumption. According to US dietary guidelines, a person suffering from high blood pressure should not consume more than 1,500mg of salt per day.
This equals to less than Â½ teaspoon of salt each day. Researchers have also found that excess salt could even reduce the effectiveness of blood pressure drugs.