Headaches, fatigue, difficulty breathing, and chest pains are among the symptoms associated with high blood pressure. However, these symptoms are also common and could be due to stress or other factors, leading individuals to overlook the possibility of having high blood pressure.

Unfortunately, about one-third of people with high blood pressure are unaware of their condition, which is why it is often referred to as the “silent killer.”

Overlooking the symptoms of high blood pressure could result in more severe health conditions in the long run, such as heart disease, stroke, kidney failure, and eye problems.

Fortunately, you don’t need medication to prevent high blood pressure and its potential health risks.

Regular exercise, healthy eating habits, and avoiding foods that could increase your blood pressure could be a drug-free solution, even for older adults with limited mobility.

It is widely known that making poor dietary choices can increase the risk of developing high blood pressure. However, when you opt for foods that are marketed as healthy, you do not anticipate that they could potentially lead to high blood pressure.

A nutritionist has identified five foods that are often considered healthy but could actually be harmful to your blood vessels.

Consuming excessive amounts of salt in your diet can cause your blood pressure to rise. In fact, according to national health agencies, salt is considered the leading cause of hypertension. Although consuming one salty meal is unlikely to cause a significant spike in blood pressure, there are several unsuspecting foods that may need to be monitored, as identified by Rob Hobson, a Consultant Nutritionist at Healthspan supplements.

Fermented foods, such as kimchi, are gaining popularity due to their potential benefits for gut health, thanks to their abundance of beneficial bacteria.

“However, kimchi is high in salt with as much as two grams per serving ([which represents] 33 percent of the recommended [daily] intake) and this can contribute to raised blood pressure levels,” the nutritionist added.

Salt can lead to an increase in blood pressure by causing water retention in the bloodstream. When you consume salt, it draws water into the bloodstream, resulting in increased blood volume in the vessels. Consequently, the heart has to work harder to pump the increased blood volume, leading to elevated pressure. It is worth noting that blood pressure can rise shortly after consuming a meal high in salt, leading to impaired blood vessel dilation within less than an hour. If this spike in blood pressure persists, it can increase the risk of heart disease over time.

Olives are a healthy food staple that contains salt. While they are rich in heart-healthy monounsaturated fats, it’s important to watch your salt intake.

Soups can be a nutritious addition to a healthy diet since they often contain vegetables and pulses. However, many soups are made with stocks and other salty flavorings that increase the sodium content. Canned soups are even higher in sodium due to the salt used to preserve them.

Coconut oil is often purchased as a healthier alternative to other oils. However, it’s important to note that this type of oil is high in saturated fats, which can raise cholesterol and blood pressure. The exact mechanism isn’t fully understood, but it’s thought that changes in hormone production and inflammation may contribute to increased blood pressure.

Fruit juice contains a lot of free sugars, making it another healthy food to watch. Drinking too much fruit juice can lead to weight gain, which in turn can increase the risk of high blood pressure. It’s important to be mindful of your intake and consume fruit juice in moderation.

The nutritionist concludes that a balanced diet can include all types of foods, including those mentioned above. However, it’s important to monitor your salt intake and focus on eating fruits and vegetables to reduce the risk of high blood pressure.

Certain supplements, such as Circulease, which contain a compound from tomatoes called Fruitflow, may also be beneficial in preventing blood from becoming sticky and improving blood flow.

Image Credit: Getty

Source link