The United States is currently facing a massive epidemic of heart disease, which is one of the leading causes of death for both men and women.
High blood pressure, for instance, is referred to as the ‘silent killer’ because it can be compared to a bomb that’s about to explode. High blood pressure can slowly sneak up on an unsuspecting individual and leave behind a wave of damage in its wake.
According to the National Institute of Health, high blood pressure affects around one in three adults.
A proper diet goes hand-in-hand with lowering blood pressure and improving overall heart-health, and here are a few examples of the most effective blood-pressure-lowering foods:
This sunny food usually gets a bad reputation from dieters because they believe it’s too high in sugar and carbs, but eating a banana a day will surely keep the high blood pressure away.
Bananas are loaded with potassium, which has been shown to have a positive impact on heart-health. In fact, in a study from the University of Naples, the potassium can eliminate the need for blood pressure medication and can keep arteries free from plaque.
There are several ways to eat bananas, but the best way to enjoy this fruit is eating it freshly peeled.
The drink you loved as a child can actually be beneficial for your health as an adult. Grape juice is loaded with nutrients and antioxidants that promote proper heart-health and keep blood pressure at an optimal level.
According to a study on cultural impact on health, French adults were three times less likely to suffer from a blood pressure-induced heart attack than American adults.
Furthermore, the researchers concluded that part of the reason that French individuals had less trouble with their heart was because they often ate their meals with red wine.
Overall, 100% grape juice offers even more benefits than red wine because it’s devoid of alcohol, offers more antioxidants and has less sugar. For added health benefits, you can make a grape juice smoothie with berries, celery and carrots in a blender and serve over ice.
Oats are rich in fiber, which is a nutrient that can keep you full, provide energy and reduce blood pressure by nixing cholesterol.
According to Chinese researchers, men and women who incorporated three ounces of oats into their diets had lower blood pressure by 11%.
There are several ways you can incorporate oats into your daily life. You can make them into granola bars or eat them as oatmeal in the morning with a side of fruit.
Onions are loaded with a variety of nutrients and potent antioxidants that work hard to lower blood pressure and sugar levels. This food is loaded with numerous compounds that help lower cholesterol, thin the blood and promote clearer arteries as well.
Unfortunately, onions are only medicinal when raw. They lose their important and beneficial sulfur known as Allicin when used in cooking.
But even raw onions are fantastic because they add flavor to food without compromising overall health.
Potatoes are one of the most versatile foods there are. They can be healthy. They can be not-so healthy. It really depends on how you prepare it. If you decide to slice them, fry them, and douse them in salt, then you probably aren’t getting any of the valuable nutrients that they provide.
But, in its purest and unadulterated form, a potato is full of magnesium and potassium, which can help lower your blood pressure. Potatoes are also a great source of fiber and Vitamin B6, which are important for overall health.
Instead of French fries or potato chips as a side, consider wrapping a potato in foil and baking it. But like anything good, it can turn to the dark side.
Avoid slathering it with sour cream, butter, or bacon bits and use something that is lower in sodium and fat. Some healthy alternatives include salsa, Greek yogurt, herbs and spices like pepper, cayenne, and paprika, or just other vegetables like kale, olives, or bell peppers.
Learning to eat right is crucial for your overall health, but despite what you may think, adopting good eating habits isn’t difficult.