As it is National Salt Awareness Week this month, we decided to play our part and see what we could do to ‘shake the salt habit’.
Read on in this interesting post to find out ways you can lower your blood pressure (one of the key symptoms is too much salt in your diet) by simply making a few tweaks to what you eat.
Let’s start with what you can eat more of;
Berries, berries and more berries.
Strawberries and blueberries are super-rich in antioxidants called anthocyanins.
A recent study with over 30,000 people with high blood pressure took part in a large study that found that those who had the highest intake of antioxidants from strawberries and blueberries, got an 8% decrease in their risk of blood pressure compared to those who consumed less.
By consuming more beetroot, whether sliced, diced, pickled or even just the beetroot juice, you can lower blood pressure in both the long term and the short term. Positive effects can be seen within 24 hours so it can benefit to incorporate beetroot juice into your diet every day and add beetroot to salads when you eat them.
Now it may seem unlikely to be told to eat something like chocolate, but dark chocolate can play a part in minimising blood pressure too! By eating a tasty square of high-quality minimum 70% cocoa dark chocolate you could help to reduce your blood pressure and the effects of hypertension.
Leafy Green Vegetables
These types of vegetables are full of healthy nitrates that can help you manage hypertension. Eating 1-2 servings of vegetables daily can help reduce the effects of high blood pressure for up to 24 hours. Not sure what we mean? Try cabbages, kale, lettuce, spinach or some seasonal fennel.
Bananas are a great snack and are rich in potassium This can play a big role in controlling high blood pressure. The clever potassium minimises the effects of salt and relieves the tension in the blood vessel walls. You can also find potassium in avocado, mushrooms and sweet potatoes.
Garlic might not make your breath smell its best, but it is a natural antifungal and antibiotic food with the main ingredient being allicin. Garlic can help to increase the production of nitric oxide in the body which aids in soothing the muscles and relaxing the blood vessels.
Now it’s time to focus on what you need to eat less of.
This one is obvious, it’s what this article is about. Salt (sodium) is known to significantly increase blood pressure and the risk of heart disease. Try to swap out salt for garlic in savoury meals.
If you drink a lot of alcohol, it can cause a significant rise in blood pressure. Large intakes of alcohol can increase the risk of heart failure, cancer, obesity and strokes as well so try to observe the mantra ‘everything in moderation’ and watch out for this one.
For many of us, we need this one to get going in the morning, but it doesn’t just live in coffee. It’s in a range of other drinks like tea, energy drinks and cola. Caffeine can cause a spike in short-term blood pressure. Avoiding caffeinated drinks and swapping them with decaf versions can help you to manage your blood pressure more efficiently.
How can Carefour help?
Carefour creates care plans around each of our client’s specific needs and requirements and no matter how small the details, we take them into account.
If lowering salt in a diet for our live-in care clients or HomeCare customers is what is required, then this can of course be accommodated.
Carefour provides home care and 24-hour Live-in Care across the Midlands and Oxfordshire and so please get in touch if you or a loved one requires care at home.