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Decoding The Right Diet For High BP

By Dr. Nikita Toshi +2 more

No diet discussion for High Blood pressure is complete without talking about the DASH diet.

DASH stands for Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension.

pharmeasy-diet-for-high-blood-pressure-blog

This diet is relatively simple and involves:

  • Eating more fresh fruits and veggies
  • Indulging in low-fat dairy products
  • Increasing the intake of nuts, whole grains, and fish
  • Lowering the intake of red meat, salt, and high sugar content food items

Reducing the consumption of food items that are high in cholesterol, trans fats, and saturated fat.

Another favourite variation of the DASH diet is the DASH-Sodium diet. This diet refers to cutting the sodium intake per day (to about 2-3 teaspoons, 1500 milligrams). While this reduction doesn’t need to be immediate, you can gradually reduce the sodium intake till your body adjusts to this prescribed goal.

You can start by eating foods rich in potassium, fibre and protein and avoiding foods rich in sodium. You can make these dietary changes gradually under the supervision of your family and healthcare provider.

Dr. Siddharth Gupta, MD

Tips to adapt to the DASH diet:

  • Make it a habit of reading product ingredients and shopping for food items that are low in sodium
  • Add dry beans to your diet
  • Try to use low-fat or zero-fat condiments
  • Half your servings of margarine, butter, and salad dressings
  • Reduce meat servings to about 6 ounces each day
  • Indulge in healthy snacking – choose unsalted nuts, raisins, dry fruits instead of chips, try low or fat-free yoghurt, and plain popcorns without butter
  • Turn vegetarian, if possible

Consult a dietician or doctor before you put yourself on a DASH diet. That’s because he/she will accurately be able to tell you what should be your calorie intake per day to maintain a healthy lifestyle.

Simultaneously, specific foods that you need to avoid include:

  • Frozen Meals
  • Pastries
  • Packaged and Processed food
  • Soft drinks
  • Candy
  • Canned beans
  • Alcohol
  • Sauces, to name a few

Many doctors also recommend a Mediterranean Diet to keep blood pressure and heart ailments at bay.

Did you know that being physically active can help you keep your blood pressure in a safe range and also help you avoid heart disease and stroke? You can club a healthy diet with regular physical activity to keep your blood pressure in check.

Dr. Rajeev Singh, BAMS

Some common traits of this diet include:

  1. Low to moderate consumption of wine and alcohol.
  2. Increased consumption of fruits, veggies, nuts, seeds, bread, cereals, and potatoes
  3. Olive oil to be consumed as a single monounsaturated source of fat
  4. Consumption of egg restricted to about four times a week to the maximum
  5. Significant reduction in red meat consumption
  6. Fish, dairy products, and meat to be consumed in limited to low amounts

Many attribute the benefits of this diet as the sole reason for a low rate of heart diseases in the Mediterranean countries. However, the American Heart Association suggests that further studies and experiments need to be conducted to quantify the benefits of this diet.

Keep a track

Many dieticians also suggest tracking how many calories you are eating and drinking per day. Write down whatever you consume each day, this also includes jotting down the portion sizes. It is said that this is one of the best ways to enlighten yourselves about much you are consuming. On the basis of this analysis, you can then work out a plan – on reducing the calorie count and the portion size and finally your blood pressure too!

Also Read: Pulmonary Arterial Hypertension: Causes & Diagnosis  

Disclaimer: The information provided here is for educational/awareness purposes only and is not intended to be a substitute for medical treatment by a healthcare professional and should not be relied upon to diagnose or treat any medical condition. The reader should consult a registered medical practitioner to determine the appropriateness of the information and before consuming any medication. PharmEasy does not provide any guarantee or warranty (express or implied) regarding the accuracy, adequacy, completeness, legality, reliability or usefulness of the information; and disclaims any liability arising thereof.

Links and product recommendations in the information provided here are advertisements of third-party products available on the website. PharmEasy does not make any representation on the accuracy or suitability of such products/services. Advertisements do not influence the editorial decisions or content. The information in this blog is subject to change without notice. The authors and administrators reserve the right to modify, add, or remove content without notification. It is your responsibility to review this disclaimer regularly for any changes.

References

  1. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/32330233/
  2. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK482514/
  3. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/19843201/
  4. https://www.heart.org/en/healthy-living/healthy-eating/eat-smart/nutrition-basics/aha-diet-and-lifestyle-recommendations

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