10 Foods To Avoid If You Have High Blood Pressure

High Blood Pressure

In this article, we discuss some foods that you should avoid if you have high blood pressure.

What Is High Blood Pressure?

High Blood Pressure, also known as Hypertension, is a condition where the blood vessels in the arteries narrow. This increases blood pressure in the arteries/veins and puts an excess load on the muscle walls. 

Normal BP is about 120/80 mm Hg to 139/89 mm Hg. In case your BP is increasing frequently, then it could be risky. People who suffer from high BP usually have to resort to medication for the majority of their life. But if you make necessary dietary changes and adopt a healthy diet, it may bring positive results on your BP issues.

Foods To Avoid In High Blood Pressure

If you are suffering from high BP then you need to bring some changes in your diet.

Erasing these foods from your diet will lead to an overall improvement in your health condition. Let’s discuss the risk factors associated with these foods and why you should avoid them.

1. Salt Enriched Foods

Salt is made up of sodium and taking more than required sodium in your diet will increase rot your blood vessels and weaken your arteries. Due to the obstruction in the arteries, blood flows at an abnormal rate. This directly impacts your heart and in turn all your bodily functions.

2. Fatty And Oily Foods

Fatty and oily foods have trans and saturated fats. These fats are found in many day-to-day products such as junk food and dairy products. They are most often are found in packed or in fast foods. Even worse, fast foods also have a high level of sodium.

Saturated and trans fats increase the LDL cholesterol level of your body. LDL cholesterol is not a good type of cholesterol and is the gateway contributor to several poor health conditions. An increase in this type of cholesterol will lead to the narrowing of your blood vessels and make them stiff. This is the prime reason for high blood pressure. The excess pressure put on your heart makes it function more than it is supposed to, leading to further heart problems.

3. Caffeine 

You should avoid consuming beverages that contain caffeine. These include coffee, tea, energy drinks, cold drinks, and several aerated beverages. Irrespective of whether you struggle with high BP or not, these drinks will cause a spike in blood pressure for 3-4 hours. Daily consumption has to potential to lead to cardiovascular risks.

Depending on your body’s response to caffeine, you must have limited amounts of it. If you have a caffeine problem, consider meeting a doctor and identifying a substitute to the same.

4. Processed Foods

If you avoid eating processed foods, this will guide you to a better and healthy lifestyle. All the processed foods that you consume contain salt and other ingredients that will shoot up your blood pressure. If one can avoid eating processed and fast foods, then at least 60% of salts of their normal diet could be eliminated. The primary motive of adding salt to processed foods is to add a sense of taste.

5. Pickles

Pickles have about 570 mg of salt. This is more than enough to cause a spike in a normal human’s blood pressure. You should avoid eating pickles to maintain a healthy lifestyle. It is advised to wash your pickle first under cold water before eating it. This will remove any excess sodium (in the form of pickle extracts) present in it and the salt content reduces. In case you are a pickle lover, try and eat pickles only once a day to keep the sodium levels in your body balanced.

6. Red Meats

The different types of meats that you purchase from the supermarket are preserved with more than 900 mg of salt. Consuming such high amounts of sodium will kill several blood vessels in your arteries. These dead blood vessels collect in clusters and lead to plaque, eventually causing high BP. 

If you are a non-veg lover, then it is preferred to eat roast beef, pork tenderloin, roasted chicken, turkey, and grilled chicken. As these generally don’t have preservatives in them it is safe to consume in moderation.

7. Frozen Pizza

Pizza and other fast foods have many ingredients which act as a BP shooter. The bread which is used to make pizza’s crust or in burgers is made with plenty of sodium and unhealthy fats. Even the go-to tomato sauces used are loaded with preservatives. Other than making your meal tastier, these dishes will only make your body a ticking time bomb. 

8. High Sugar

High sugar foods and drinks like spaghetti sauce, low-fat yogurt, chocolate milk, ice tea, protein bars, and sports drinks are detrimental to the health of your arteries. Even worse, the majority of these sugars are not even natural They will be mentioned on the nutritional label of the packaging as added sugar. Unnatural sugar is more harmful to your body than the natural sugars that several ingredients impart.

9. Canned Soups And Noodles

Just because these canned soups don’t taste sweet, doesn’t mean they have no sugar content. This deception of savory food having no sugar must be cleared out. Most food brands have at least 7 to 15 grams of sugar per serving. This much sugar on a regular basis can badly damage your arteries.

10. Canned Vegetables

To save time, people consume vegetables that are sold in cans. As these canned veggies need to have a significant shelf life, manufacturers add preservatives and taste enhancers to impart an impression of freshness. Being a high BP patient it would be in your best interest to purchase fresh vegetables.

Medicines For High Blood Pressure

Avoiding the wrong foods is one step of the ladder to control high BP. Some patients may still fail to see a significant drop in BP and would need to resort to the consumption of medicines. Here is a list of medicines that help reduce high BP with minimal side effects. Although you must consult a doctor to identify the accurate dosage amount and dosage frequency.

  • Beta-blockers
  • Calcium channel blockers
  • Angiotensin II receptor blockers
  • Diuretics

Foods To Avoid In High Blood Pressure: Verdict

You must replace the above foods with healthy alternatives like oatmeal, bananas, red beets, pistachios, salmon, mackerel, seeds, herbs, and leafy greens like spinach, lettuce, kale, etc. All these foods act as blood purifiers and maintain healthy blood vessels all throughout the body. If you stick to a healthy diet for long enough, there is a chance of your blood pressure stabilizing for the better.