When determining risk factors for stroke and heart disease, the one that appears at the top of most lists is high blood pressure. Also referred to as hypertension, high blood pressure occurs when the blood pressure in an individual's arteries is elevated, which forces their heart to work harder to pump blood throughout their body. Although many individuals simply take medications to control their blood pressure, there are many ways to help manage one's blood pressure through lifestyle choices and changes, resulting in a healthier future.
Your diet is a large contributing factor to your blood pressure, as unhealthy processed foods will make matters worse. When you consume a balanced diet, rich in vegetables, fruit, nuts, seeds, and lean proteins, you will notice a reduction in your blood pressure. Sodium should be reduced, as even a small reduction can improve your blood pressure.
Potassium can actually lessen the effects of sodium, so focus on consuming more bananas, dark leafy greens, yogurt, fish, mushrooms, and avocados. As mentioned, avoid processed and fast foods, and when it comes to adding salt, develop new habits. Instead of reaching for the salt shaker, experiment with fresh herbs, spices, and citrus juice instead.