FOOD TO REDUCE BLOOD PRESSURE
Fruits, vegetables, celery, garlic, fatty fish, olive oil.
Dr. Frank M. Sacks, M.D., assistant professor of medicine at Harvard Medical School is convinced that agents including Vitamin C, fiber, antioxidants, potassium, in fruits and vegetables have powers to reduce blood pressure.
A Harvard study found that those who ate very little fruit were 46% more likely to develop high blood pressure than those who ate the equivalent fiber in 5 apples a day. Dr. Christopher J. Bulpitt of Hammersmith Hospital, London, says there is much evidences that show high blood pressure and stroke fatalities are highest among people who eat the least Vitamin C.
Antioxidants in fruits and vegetables increase the amount of prostacyclin that dilates blood vessels and lowers blood pressure.
G. Gopal Krishna, M.D., Temple University School of Medicine, thinks too little potassium leads to sodium retention which lead to high blood pressure.
Celery contains 3-n-butyl phthalide which gives the celery its aroma and is probably the active blood pressure lowering ingredient.
Garlic, a legendary folk remedy for high blood pressure, probably relaxes the smooth muscles of the blood vessels, thereby lowering blood pressure. Garlic and onions has a high concentration of adenosine, a smooth-muscle relaxant.
Peter Singer, Ph.D., who said his own blood pressure dropped from 140/90 to 100/70 after eating a small can of mackerel fillets everyday, found small doses of fish oil as effective in reducing blood pressure as Inderal, a beta-blocker.
A study of 76 middle-aged men with high blood pressure at Stanford Medical School found 3 tablespoons of olive oil a day could lower systolic pressure about 9 points and diastolic pressure by 6 points. Another University of Kentucky study found a mere two-third of a tablespoon olive oil daily lower systolic pressure 5 points and diastolic pressure 4 points.
Food to restrict: salt and alcohol.
A study at Keio University, Japan, on 4,554 men aged between 20's to 70's found the lowest risk of high blood pressure in those drinking 3 cups of coffee or more while those who drink no coffee had the biggest ratio of high blood pressure.
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