High Blood Pressure (HBP or hypertension) is a condition in which the force of blood flowing through your blood vessels is consistently too high. One-in-three Americans over the age of 20 suffer from HBP. Many don’t even know they suffer from the condition. Most of the time, there are no obvious symptoms. Risk factors for developing High Blood Pressure include: family history, obesity, smoking, and high alcohol intake. High Blood Pressure increases your risk of stroke as well as developing heart disease.

Studies have shown that those with HBP can lower their blood pressure by maintaining a healthy diet and avoiding key foods and drinks. So, what are the best and worst foods for those suffering from high blood pressure?

Best Choices

  1. Fish- Fish is a great source of lean protein. Fish like salmon and mackerel can help to reduce inflammation and blood pressure due to the Omega-3 fatty acids.
  2. Berries- The flavonoids in blueberries, strawberries, and raspberries may help to lower blood pressure.
  3. Leafy Greens- Leafy greens like kale, arugula, and romaine lettuce are all high in potassium. Potassium is key in helping kidneys to get rid of more sodium through urine. This in turn lowers blood pressure.
  4. Garlic- Garlic increases the amount of nitric oxide in the body. The nitric oxide helps with widening of the arteries, which lowers blood pressure.
  5. Yogurt- According to the American Heart Association, females who consumed five or more servings of yogurt a week experienced a 20 percent reduction in their risk of developing HBP.
  6. Oatmeal- This high-fiber, low-sodium food is a great way to start the day while reducing blood pressure.

Worst Choices

  1. Deli meat- Processed deli meats are often cured and preserved with salt to make them last longer.
  2. Canned tomato sauce- Processed, store-bought canned tomato sauces, like spaghetti sauce, are packed with sodium.
  3. Coffee- Beverages containing caffeine can cause a spike in blood pressure. Caffeine may also cause the adrenal glands to release cortisol and adrenaline-two things that typically cause blood pressure to rise.
  4. Alcohol- Studies have shown that having more than one drink a day can raise your blood pressure by several points.

It’s important to understand the role of diet when faced with a high blood pressure diagnosis and implement good decision-making skills when it comes to food and drink.

If you or someone you love is suffering from high blood pressure and looking for new treatment options, studies are enrolling now in your local area that may help.  Research doctors are evaluating new treatment options and qualified participants may have access to potential new HBP treatments.  Participants often receive care from board-certified physicians and other medical staff, and may receive compensation for time and travel expenses. To learn more about these studies and to see if you qualify CLICK HERE.