High blood pressure can increase a person’s risk of serious health problems occurring, such as heart attack and stroke. It’s difficult to spot the condition because symptoms are rarely noticeable, so having your blood pressure checked on a regular basis is the best way to find out if you have high blood pressure. One of the best ways high blood pressure can be prevented or reducing is by eating healthily. As well as cutting down on the amount of salt in your food, the NHS advises eating plenty of fruit and vegetables.
Pistachios are considered a healthy way to lower blood pressure
But there are certain foods alone that have been found to be effective at lowering blood pressure. One of these foods is pistachios.
Pistachios have been found to reduce peripheral vascular resistance, or blood vessel tightening, and heart rate.
One study found a diet with one serving of pistachios a day helped reduce blood pressure.
But if you are going to eat pistachios, it’s better to opt for the unsalted kind, because salt can have a negative impact on blood pressure.
“Salt works on your kidneys to make your body hold on to more water,” explains Blood Pressure UK.
“This extra stored water raises your blood pressure and puts strain on your kidneys, arteries, heart and brain.”
One way to counteract the negative effects of salt on high blood pressure is to eat potassium.
The blood pressure charity adds: “Your kidneys help to control your blood pressure by controlling the amount of fluid stored in your body. The more fluid, the higher your blood pressure.
“Your kidneys do this by filtering your blood and sucking out any extra fluid, which it then stores in your bladder as urine. This process uses a delicate balance of sodium and potassium to pull the water across a wall of cells from the bloodstream into a collecting channel that leads to the bladder.
“Eating salt raises the amount of sodium in your bloodstream and wrecks the delicate balance, reducing the ability of your kidneys to remove the water. By eating more fruit and vegetables, you will increase your potassium levels and help to restore the delicate balance.
“This will help your kidneys to work more efficiently – and help to lower your blood pressure to a healthy level.”
Examples of potassium rich foods include avocado, beetroot and edamame.
But when it comes to drinks, which packs the most of the mineral?
Citrus fruits like oranges are well known for their vitamin C content, but they are also a great source of potassium, making orange juice a top potassium-rich drink.
According to experts at Healthline, one cup of orange juice provides 11 per cent of your recommended daily intake.
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