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The potential causes for high blood pressure, including a variety of stresses from working and private life, and many, but some of the most controllable are found on the dinner table. A battery of foodstuffs can be described as blood pressure danger foods, carrying the risk of elevating blood pressure or causing it to spike higher if there is already a problem.
Changing your eating habits is not an automatic cure-all for this ailment, nor does everybody who consumes the high-risk foods develop high blood pressure. Hypertension, excess weight, and lack of sufficient exercise are all major factors in pushing systolic pressure over 140 or diastolic pressure above 90. Nevertheless, eating habits are another piece of a hazardous internal puzzle. Overall, too much salt and not enough potassium are the main culprits.
Moderate drinking is unlikely to cause your blood pressure to rise, but anything above this golden mean, including knocking back several drinks in quick succession, is likely to make your blood pressure “reach for the stars” like an outlaw in an old Western. Limiting yourself to two drinks a day, or one drink daily if you’re a senior, will actually ease your blood pressure a bit. Above that level, however, you are playing with fire.
A drink consists of 12 ounces of beer, five ounces of wine, or an ounce and a half of “hard liquor.” If you are drinking more than this amount, however, you should approach the matter cautiously and cut back in stages rather than all at once. One of the withdrawal effects of sharply lowering your alcohol consumption is to raise your blood pressure strongly, making a quick “cold turkey” worse for your system than excessive drinking.
Salt is well known to raise blood pressure, which means that salty chow of any kind is on the blood pressure danger foods list. Besides table salt, sodium is found in many snack foods, particularly chips. Pickles are practically bursting with the stuff, making them risky for blood pressure sufferers. Canned foods of every sort also tends to use abundant salt as a preservative.
The key, again, is moderation. Unless a doctor has specifically told you to do so, you should not eliminate salt from your diet. Sodium is needed by the body, and consuming none at all will make you sick and could eventually kill you. As with alcohol, the best solution is a restrained amount rather than none at all.
The reason bacon sizzles so scrumptiously in the pan is that it is full of fat, which is not particularly good for the circulatory system. In short, it is a reddish, crispy slice of trouble when your blood pressure is on the rise. Give it a pass most of the time, even in its turkey based incarnation. To top off the vein-bulging effects of this food, it is also fairly salty, even if it cannot match up with such sodium rich foods as sauerkraut or French fries.
Chopping dairy out of your diet totally can have some major downsides, since it is such a good source of calcium. Five grams of saturated fat are bubbling ominously in every cup of whole milk. Skim milk is the healthiest choice, but if you are unable to choke it down, 1% milk and 2% milk are superior to the whole milk. Choose the lowest percent that you find palatable.
The humble doughnut is a fat-loaded landmine lurking under an innocent-looking coating of powdered sugar. Due to the fact that these circular pastries are fried in oil, plus thanks to their usual ingredient list, a single average-sized doughnut contains 12 grams of fat, or almost three times the amount found in a cup of whole milk. It also incorporates around 200 calories, which adds to your weight and thus strains your circulatory system further.
This favorite, disc-like American food is frequently a tour-de-force of heart unhealthiness, at least in its frozen, pre-packaged form. Though the quantities vary, many pizzas deliver a double, one-two punch of fat and sodium at the same time. “Tombstone” might be all too apt a brand name for something that can pack as much as 2.4 grams of salt into a single slice.
Chinese food, and Asian cooking in general, often slip under the radar when it comes to identification as blood pressure danger foods. This is perhaps due to the fact that fish is the protein of choice in many dishes, rather than fatty red meat. Or, it might be due to all the tired jokes about Asian food being so ephemeral that you’re hungry again an hour after devouring it. Regardless, many Asian sauces, including soy sauce and Terayaki sauce, are loaded with salt. In many cases, you would almost be better off eating a large hamburger with pickles and fries than something in Chinese soy sauce, which may contain a full gram of salt per tablespoon.
Canned Soup, Instant Soup, and Instant Noodles
Basically all canned and instant soups and noodles are thickly populated with sodium, raising the risk of blood pressure problems among the susceptible. Suggesting that nothing is sacred, even that standby of the stereotypical impoverished university student, Ramen noodles, is filled with salt.
The role of sugar as a blood pressure danger food is not as prominently known as that of salt or fat, but it is believed to also be a contributor. Sodas of all kinds are filled with sugar in the United States, in a soluble form easily absorbed by the body. Cutting back on these drinks, or eliminating them entirely, will probably be a good step towards lowering your blood pressure.
Furthermore, you will reduce your risk of other diet-prompted disorders, such as obesity (which, of course, also feeds back into high blood pressure via another route) and diabetes. Unlike alcohol, soda is a beverage which has no health benefits at any level of consumption, and thus can be safely eliminated from the diet to gain a range of pluses at practically no “cost” to you.
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