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This month, in my quest to help you all stay healthier for longer, we will be looking at blood pressure

Data shows that almost a quarter of people aged 18-39 had high blood pressure (hypertension), which jumps to 40% if you add in raised blood pressure (pre-hypertension)! And this figure jumps again to 55% for those aged 40-59! 😱 But high blood pressure is largely PREVENTABLE So this month we will be looking at foods that can help keep your blood pressure healthy. Maintaining a healthy blood pressure is important for overall cardiovascular health. Here are some foods that can help support healthy blood pressure levels: Berries: Blueberries, strawberries, and raspberries are packed with antioxidants, including flavonoids, which have been associated with reduced blood pressure. Beets: Beets contain nitrates, which are converted into nitric oxide in the body. Nitric oxide helps relax and dilate blood vessels, promoting healthy blood flow and potentially lowering blood pressure. Fish rich in omega-3 fatty acids: Fatty fish like salmon, mackerel, and sardines are high in omega-3 fatty acids, which can help reduce inflammation and lower blood pressure. Leafy greens: Vegetables like spinach, kale, Swiss chard, and collard greens are rich in potassium, which helps balance sodium levels and can lower blood pressure. Nuts and seeds: Almonds, walnuts, flaxseeds, and chia seeds are rich in potassium, magnesium, and healthy fats, all of which can contribute to better blood pressure control. Garlic: Garlic has been associated with lower blood pressure levels. Incorporating fresh garlic or garlic powder into your meals can be beneficial. Whole grains: Foods like whole wheat, brown rice, quinoa, and oats are high in fiber, which may help lower blood pressure. Aim for whole grains rather than refined grains. Low-fat dairy products: Skim milk, yogurt, and other low-fat dairy products are excellent sources of calcium and vitamin D, which are beneficial for blood pressure regulation. Dark chocolate: Dark chocolate with a high cocoa content (at least 70%) contains flavanols, which can help relax blood vessels and improve blood flow. Olive oil: Rich in monounsaturated fats, olive oil can help reduce inflammation and improve heart health, potentially contributing to healthy blood pressure levels. In addition to incorporating these foods into your diet, it's important to limit your intake of sodium (salt), processed foods, sugary beverages, and excessive alcohol, as these can negatively impact blood pressure.

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