Dr Chris Steele shares diet tips on reducing blood pressure
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Having high blood pressure can be dangerous as it puts extra strain on your organs, including the brain and heart. If left untreated this can lead to emergencies like strokes and heart attacks. With around one in three adults in the UK thought to be living with high blood pressure, it is worth being aware of ways to help lower it.
As with many health conditions, diet plays a large role in our blood pressure.
More specifically, eating foods high in salt is known to significantly raise levels.
Luckily diet can also help lower blood pressure.
Registered nutritionist consultant at Nutrigums, Shona Wilkinson, spoke with Express.co.uk to explain more.
She said: “There are various unhealthy lifestyle aspects that can have an impact on blood pressure such as; drinking too much alcohol or caffeine-based drinks, being overweight, smoking, lack of exercise, eating too much salt and not enough fruits and vegetables.
“There are several ways to reduce high blood pressure without medication, for example eating foods that contain potassium, magnesium and B vitamins will contribute to the maintenance of normal blood pressure.”
How does haddock reduce blood pressure?
Ms Wilkinson specifically recommended eating steamed haddock regularly as a way to lower high blood pressure – also known as hypertension.
“Steamed haddock in particular is a strong source of potassium and B vitamins such as niacin, B3, B6 and B12,” she said.
“These essential vitamins and minerals can help to protect against oxidative stress which can damage cells over time.”
Potassium is known to prevent high blood pressure as it helps the body get rid of sodium.
The American Heart Association explains: “The more potassium you eat, the more sodium you lose through urine.
“Potassium also helps to ease tension in your blood vessel walls, which helps further lower blood pressure.
“Increasing potassium through diet is recommended in adults with blood pressure above 120/80 who are otherwise healthy.”
Other health benefits of haddock
Haddock also contains omega-3 fatty acids.
“Most importantly, haddock is rich in omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids, which are known to support heart and brain health,” Ms Wilkinson said.
“It’s often favoured by those trying to lose weight as it’s low in calories but high in protein.
“Omega-3 fatty acids also have anti-inflammatory properties.
“Chronic inflammation can be a contributing factor to heart disease and other cardiovascular-related diseases.”
Do I have high blood pressure?
High blood pressure is considered to be 140/90 millimetres of mercury (mmHg) or higher (or 150/90mmHg or higher if you’re over the age of 80).
Ideal blood pressure is usually considered to be between 90/60mmHg and 120/80mmHg.
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