Diet can play a large role when it comes to maintaining a healthy blood pressure. For starters salt has been shown to increase blood pressure.
Fatty foods, alcohol, caffeine, sugar and processed foods all can raise blood pressure, but a new Harvard led study has revealed that sugary drinks, too, make the list of foods to avoid if you’re worried about blood pressure.
Sugary beverages increase blood pressure
The findings from the latest study uncovered that consuming a sugary beverage a day is enough to increase the risk of developing high blood pressure.
The researchers took data from six other studies which contained information from over 240,000 people. What the researchers found was that there was a 12 percent increase in blood pressure in those who consumed one or more sugary beverages a day in comparison to those who did not drink the popular beverage. Serving sizes of beverages varied from seven to 12 ounces.
Sugary beverages consisted of fruit punches, lemonade, soda, and energy and sports drinks. These are all common staples to many Americans diets.
Not only do sugary beverages increase blood pressure but they also promote hunger as they do not make you feel full causing you to consume more food which can contribute to weight gain. Weight gain as well is a common factor for blood pressure furthering the vicious cycle which sugary beverages cause.
Another finding was those who commonly drank sugary beverages also partook in less physical activity and generally ate worse than individuals who did not. These factors, too, can lead to high blood pressure.
Foods that can help lower blood pressure
As mentioned diet can play a role in blood pressure and just like how some foods and beverages raise blood pressure there are many foods which can help lower it. Here is a list of those foods which help lower blood pressure.
- White beans
- Pork tenderloin
- Fat-free plain yogurt
- Peaches and nectarines
- Red bell peppers
- Sweet potatoes
By incorporating these foods into your diet you can better help lower your blood pressure numbers. But remember, before changing your diet speak with your doctor prior. One thing is known is that minimizing or removing sugary beverages can begin to lower your blood pressure.