Food that Prevents and Controls High Blood Pressure

High blood pressure is a common health problem, which can be controlled naturally by including some items in the diet.

The role of food in preventing and controlling health conditions has been recognized from ancient times. The ancient Chinese recommended sprouts, fruits like bananas and vegetables like celery to soften blood vessels. The traditional Indian system of medicine, Ayurveda, recommends a number of home remedies for Blood Pressure or blood pressure. Studies have shown that grains and cereals, some fruits and vegetables, healthy fats and a diet rich in potassium and calcium prevent and control high blood pressure.

Role of Grains and Cereals in Controlling Blood Pressure

Whole grains and cereals like oats are beneficial in controlling high blood pressure. Barley stimulates the kidneys and thus helps to rid the body of excess water and decrease the load on the heart. Rice is low in fat, cholesterol and salt, and is thus recommended for patients of blood pressure. Moreover, brown rice has calcium which soothes the nervous system and prevents high pressure. Alfalfa sprouts soften hard arteries and is recommended for healthy blood vessels.

Role of Fruits and Vegetables in Controlling Blood Pressure

A diet rich in fruits and vegetables is the best preventive against blood pressure. This is due to the presence of fiber and vitamin C, especially in fruits. Vitamin C in citrus fruits has a protective effect on the blood vessels. Antioxidants in fruits and vegetables dilate the blood vessels and control blood pressure. Particularly beneficial fruits include:

  • Lemons help to maintain healthy capillaries.
  • Apples have a diuretic effect, thus reducing sodium chloride in the body and maintaining the blood pressure.
  • Grapefruit too helps in controlling high blood pressure.
  • Seeds of watermelon can be dried and roasted and included in the diet.

Some vegetables, such as the following, are particularly effective in controlling blood pressure:

  • Parsley, especially in juice form, is effective in maintaining the blood vessels and lowering Blood Pressure because of its mineral and vitamin content (especially ascorbic acid).
  • Cucumber too is more effective as a juice.
  • Celery has been used as a folk remedy in Asia to lower blood pressure, as it reduces stress hormones that lead to constriction of blood vessels.
  • Garlic relieves hypertension, slows the pulse rate and maintains the rhythm of the heart. It is more effective in the raw form.

Role of Minerals in Controlling Blood Pressure

An Italian study shows that potassium rich foods like green leafy vegetables, potatoes, vitamin C rich fruits, whole grains, nuts and seeds lower the blood pressure. Boiled potatoes are rich not only in potassium, but also magnesium. Moreover, they do not contain sodium salts.

Calcium rich foods like dairy products and green leafy vegetables are essential, as there is some relation between calcium deficiency and high blood pressure. Calcium acts as a natural diuretic when there is an excess of sodium in the body.

Tips to Control Blood Pressure

It is advisable to omit heavily salted, processed and refined food, as well as those that increase cholesterol. Consumption of tea, coffee and alcohol should be restricted.

Saturated animal fats like butter can be replaced with unsaturated fats like corn or sesame oil which reduce cholesterol. Olive oil has mono-unsaturated fatty acids which control cholesterol and prevent high blood pressure.

Other Natural Remedies to Control Blood Pressure

Relaxation with soothing music and aromatherapy are becoming popular, as the link between lifestyle and pressure is being recognized. It is also important to remain positive and happy, and exercise regularly.

High blood pressure is a medical condition that can have serious consequences and requires long term treatment. However, it can be effectively prevented and controlled with a diet rich in fruits and vegetables, grains, calcium and potassium and healthy oils.

Note: This is for information only. Any changes in the diet for medicinal purposes should be made in consultation with a medical practitioner.


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