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Reduce Your Blood Pressure with Food!

By Sara Butler

Hypertension, or high blood pressure, is a problem for a lot of people. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, one-third of Americans have high blood pressure. While some people take medication to control their blood pressure, there are some foods you can add to your diet to help you reduce it naturally. Here are a few foods you may want to consider adding to your diet in an effort to keep your blood pressure at healthy levels.

Why Blood Pressure Matters

Your blood pressure refers to the pressure inside the vessels that carry blood all over your body. If this pressure is outside of the normal range, then it can create serious health problems such as stroke, kidney issues, and heart disease.

A diet filled with lean protein, fiber, fruits, and vegetables, as well as healthy fats is ideal for everyone, but especially those who suffer from high blood pressure. If you can reduce the number of refined sugars, sodium, and processed foods in your diet, then you're on the right path to better health and, hopefully, lower blood pressure.

Foods That May Help

There are a few foods you may want to consider in order to help reduce your blood pressure. These include:

  • Dark chocolate - Yes, chocolate is on the list! Dark chocolate that is 50 to 70 percent cacao is very high in antioxidants. Studies have found that dark chocolate can help to reduce your systolic blood pressure, which is the pressure created as your heart pushes blood through your aorta to the rest of your body.
  • Flaxseed - These tiny seeds are full of fiber, fatty acids, and something called lignans, a polyphenol thought to help reduce blood pressure and reduce the chances of developing heart disease.
  • Nitrate vegetables - Nitrate vegetables such as leafy greens, carrots, celery, cabbage, green beans, and beets help to reduce blood pressure by increasing the amount of nitric oxide in the body, which helps to relax blood vessels and improve circulation.
  • Olive oil - The antioxidants in olive oil have been found to reduce blood pressure. Combine them with nitrate vegetables and you've got the winning recipe to reduce your blood pressure.

High blood pressure is serious, and many people may not be aware they have it at all since it normally doesn't have noticeable symptoms. That's why it's important to keep tabs on your blood pressure and seek out medical advice if it's higher than 120/80.

To learn more about your health, wellness, and fitness, see your local chiropractor at The Joint Chiropractic in Woodland Hills, Calif.

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