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Potassium Good for High BP?

Submitted by Sharon Hopkins on November 19, 2010

Food Good For High BP And High Potassium

Heart diseases and blood vessel related disorders are some of the leading causes of death in the United States. Unfortunately, people who suffer from high blood pressure (BP) or hypertension are more prone to such diseases. Hypertension or high blood pressure was regarded as a part of the aging process as it was more prevalent in older people. However, in today’s world, it is not uncommon the see several young people suffering from high blood pressure. Some of the main factors that lead to hypertension are unhealthy eating habits and obesity, stress and heredity.

Although there is no cure for hypertension, controlling high BP problems is extremely important, in order to avoid more serious health complications like heart attacks and strokes. Hence doctors usually prescribe medication for people with hypertension in addition to following a high BP diet, as eating habits play a very important role in this condition.

What is a high BP diet?

A high BP diet is an eating plan, which includes a selection of all the foods that are high in the required vitamins, minerals and other nutrients that can help lower BP levels in the body.

The foods that help reduce blood pressure are fresh fruits, fresh vegetables and low fat dairy products. Any high BP diet restricts the consumption of sodium and cholesterol and includes more foods that are high in potassium, magnesium, calcium and fiber. The consumption of protein should be moderate & preferably from plant sources.

Foods that are high in sodium should be strictly avoided by people who suffer from hypertension.

What is a high BP potassium diet?

Potassium helps blunt the effect of sodium and therefore, it is important for hypertension patients to follow a high blood pressure potassium diet. Foods like bananas, potatoes, mushrooms, spinach, tuna, halibut, low fat yogurt, dates, raisins, tomatoes, cantaloupes, oranges, prunes, grapefruit and apricots are all very high in potassium and therefore, should be an integral part of any hypertension potassium diet.

Some doctors may also suggest adding a hypertension potassium supplement to the diet. However, some of these foods, like grapefruit could interfere with the effects of certain medication and therefore, it is best to check with a doctor, before consuming any of these foods. It is also important to bear in mind that an excess of potassium can lead to kidney disorders, especially in older people.

The American Heart Association has recommended the DASH diet (Dietary Approach to Stop Hypertension) as a perfect guideline to a high BP diet. Nevertheless, it is essential to speak to a doctor before making any changes to a diet.

All minerals carry out some or the other activity in our body. Therefore, there is necessity to ensure that there is proper intake of all minerals so that body keeps functioning normally.

Potassium controls the balance of fluids in the body. Less intake of Potassium can not control the fatty deposition on arteries as well some times narrowing of arteries. The arteries also become hard. This causes improper function of heart, results in high blood
pressure. Another benefit of Potassium is that, it off- sets the effect of salts which are having effects on high Blood Pressure. Need of Potassium in the body is also for proper nerve impulses, muscle contraction and to regulate blood pressure.

An adult needs around 3500 mg. of potassium each day. The need of Potassium can be suffice with proper in - take of food. The potassium contents are mainly in the following
fruits, beans, vegetables, dairy products and fish. The below mentioned eatables are preferred to be taken as raw, dried, juice or cooked.

  1. The fruits which contains a fair amount of Potassium are:- Dried Apricots, Dry Dates, Dry Figs, Raw Avocados, Raw Bananas, Raw Kiwi fruits, Raw Melon, honey dew, Orange or juice, Fresh Pears Nectarine and Dried or juice of Prune.
  2. Dry Peanuts roasted without salt, Lima bins.
  3. Resins in liquid form.
  4. Cooked Spinach, Canned or Sauce of Tomato, Cantaloupe, Sprout, Winter squash,
  5. Dairy product such as Skim milk and Plain Yogurt.
The proper balance of the above eatables will control the high Blood Pressure comfortably.

For all those who lead stressful lives and are at a high risk of heart attacks and high blood pressure should ensure that they eat all those foods which are rich in potassium, so that the arteries remain healthy and blood pressure remains controlled without any immediate risk of a heart attack.

Most of the times, the foods mentioned above can be eaten as a snack and is easily available. People suffering with thyroid disease also should take care that there is enough potassium, since potassium in these people tends to deplete considerably causing their bodies to become rigid. Deficiency of potassium in people with thyroid problems can also lead to obesity in most cases. The percentage of these cases is found more among Asians than any other races.

Thus, ensuring that there is enough potassium in diet will avoid a lot many illnesses as well as complications.
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