Bananas. Garlic. Green leafy salads. Beets. By including foods like these in your diet — easily found in your local grocery store — you can begin to lower blood pressure naturally. Along with getting more exercise, a healthier diet is key to healthy BP. And the good news is that it doesn’t have to mean changing your diet completely — it simply means making a habit of incorporating foods that are high in certain nutrients into your menu choices.
These Foods Offer Natural Ways to Lower Blood Pressure
Certain foods can help lower blood pressure naturally due to the naturally occurring compounds within them. Below are five examples of foods that may help lower blood pressure if incorporated into the diet regularly. And there’s a bonus smoothie recipe using these ingredients. As with any medical issue, seek a doctor’s attention before making any major diet changes.
Beets, along with celery, arugula, lettuce, and spinach, contain a high level of nitrates (not the kind found in packaged meats), which naturally convert to nitric oxide in the body. Nitric oxide helps relax and widen blood vessels and aid circulation. Drinking beet juice is another way to get these naturally occurring compounds.
2. Salmon and Fatty Fish
Fatty fish such as salmon and cod are excellent sources of omega-3, which is known for promoting a healthy heart. One study found people with the highest levels of omega-3 in their blood had significantly lower blood pressure when compared with the people with lower levels of omega-3 in their bodies.
Garlic has been used as a remedy for hypertension for hundreds of years. Research suggests that a compound found in garlic, known as allicin, may help reduce the production of angiotensin II in the body. Angiotensin II is a compound in the body responsible for constricting blood vessels. Garlic has lots of other health benefits as well, so don’t be shy about adding garlic to your food.
Bananas are high in potassium. One way potassium helps reduce high BP is by counteracting sodium, which is known for its blood vessel constricting properties. Potassium also helps to relax the blood vessel walls, helping blood to flow more easily. While bananas are one of the easiest ways to add potassium to your diet, giving you 9% of the recommended daily value (4,700 mg for adults), these potassium-rich foods are easy to add to your morning cereal or pack into a snack bag: a serving of dried apricots has 23% of the DV, dried prunes 15%, and raisins 13%. Vegetables like avocados, sweet potatoes, and spinach (see No. 5) are potassium-rich as well.
5. Green Leafy Vegetables
Green leafy veggies are rich in many different nutrients. They are rich in magnesium and potassium, both know for their health benefits. Additionally, they contain organically occurring nitrates, which produce nitric oxide in the digestive system. Be sure to eat your greens every day — a simple side salad with dinner or a handful of spinach in your smoothie — to make sure you get plenty of these compounds.
Which Supplements Help Lower Blood Pressure?
In addition to diet and exercise, research shows that certain supplements may help lower blood pressure. Below are supplements that could be beneficial.
This is an essential mineral necessary for normal bodily functions and energy production. Magnesium helps blood vessels relax. By helping the blood vessels to relax blood pressure improves. One study linked high levels of magnesium in the blood with better blood flow.
Fish oil is oil from the liver of fatty fish such as sardines, mackerel, and herring. A 2014 metta-analysis of 70 studies on fish oil, EPA, and DHA and people with or without high blood pressure found that the people who were consuming fish oil had an average decrease of 4.51 mm Hg in systolic blood pressure compared with people who were not consuming fish oil and a decrease of 3.05 on average in diastolic blood presses in comparison.
CoQ10 is well known as an anti-oxidant with heart-healthy benefits. This nutrient is produced by the body and is vital to energy production. Several clinical studies have shown a decrease in systolic and diastolic blood pressure in control groups taking CoQ10.
This is an essential B-complex vitamin best know to help prevent neural tube defects during pregnancy. Researchers also believe folic acid helps relax blood vessels and improves blood flow.
The American diet is typically low in potassium, an essential mineral that is necessary for normal cellular function. Potassium helps to balance sodium in the body. Additionally, potassium helps relax blood vessel walls and blood to flows more easily.
FAQs About Blood Pressure
If your blood pressure is very high be on the lookout for chest pain, blood in urine, nosebleed, or difficulty breathing.
There are many factors that can cause high blood pressure. Some of the factors cited by doctors are a diet high in fat and salt, no physical activity, stress, and not enough sleep.
Cut back on sugar, lose weight and trim down, get your exercise, eat potassium like in bananas, no smoking, and try to reduce stress with meditation and yoga.
This delicious Beet Root Smoothie is not only refreshing and healthy, it may help with your high blood pressure.
- 1 medium red beet, trimmed, peeled and chopped in 1/2 inch pieces
- 1 Granny Smith apple, cored, peeled, and chopped into 1/2 inch pieces
- 1 T Chopped mint leaves
- 1 C Pomegranate juice (Lakewood or POM)
- 2 T Lemon juice (fresh squeezed)
- 1 C Almond milk
- 1/2 C frozen mango chunks
- 1/2 C Ice
- Add all of the ingredients to a high-quality blender or bullet blender
- Put blender on liquify and blend until smooth
- You can store it in a glass container in the refrigerator for up to 2 days.
- Prep Time: 15 minutes
- Cook Time: 5 minutes
- Category: Breakfast
- Method: Blender
- Cuisine: American
Keywords: beetroot smoothie, beet smoothie, beet smoothie recipe, beet juice smoothie, beet smoothie benefits
This post is not intended to substitute for medical advice or prescribed medication. Especially if you have special health needs or a special diet, consult a physician before undertaking any new diet or exercise plan.
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