The days are getting shorter and the temperature is finally dropping, so your blood pressure should too! High blood pressure or hypertension has been called a “silent killer” and according to the CDC affects 29.5 percent of adult Americans. Even for those of us who feel we’ve done our best trying to maintain a healthy lifestyle, factors such as heredity, stress, diet and a history of smoking can cause an increase in blood pressure. Living with hypertension can lead to serious complications, including kidney failure, stroke and heart attack.
Only half of those with high blood pressure have it under control. However, there’s a game plan to reverse and prevent the progression of hypertension and it starts at the dining table. This list is easy to remember if you keep two things in mind: high protein and high fiber. Some examples of heart-healthy foods include:
- Dark Chocolate
- Olive Oil
- Leafy Greens
In addition, if you’ve been diagnosed with high blood pressure, talk to your doctor about the DASH Diet. DASH stands for Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension and is promoted by the US-based National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute to prevent and control hypertension. Studies have shown the DASH Diet has been successful in reducing high blood pressure by one point each week.
As always, check with your doctor before making any sudden changes to your diet.