High blood pressure affects more than one in four adults in the UK. A person with high blood pressure may not know they have it as the symptoms are often very subtle but the higher the pressure, the more strain is put on the heart and blood vessels, which over time could cause serious health risks. The only way to find out if your blood pressure is high is to have your blood pressure checked.
Risks associated with hypertension include:
- Heart disease
- Heart attacks
- Heart failure
- Peripheral arterial disease
- Aortic aneurysms
- Kidney disease
- Vascular dementia
Eating beetroot has been proven to help lower blood pressure and this is because beetroots are high in nitric oxide which can help open the blood vessels and lower blood pressure.
According to a study funded at Queen Mary University of London patients drank 250ml of beetroot juice a day and monitored their blood pressure levels.
The study involved 64 volunteers and the result suggested that supplementing the levels of nitrate in the diet could be an effective way to manage high blood pressure.
Steaming, roasting or drinking in a juice all has a positive effect
Professor Amrita Ahluwalia
Professor Amrita Ahluwalia, who lead the research said: “This has proven that a daily inorganic nitrate dose can be as effective as medical intervention in reducing blood pressure and the best part is we can get it from beetroot and other leafy green vegetables.
“For those looking to work dietary nitrate into their daily diets, the trick is not to boil the vegetables as the dietary nitrate is water soluble.
“Steaming, roasting or drinking in a juice all has a positive effect.”
Ways to add beetroot into your diet include:
- Beetroot pickles
- Beetroot juices and smoothies
- Beetroot tea
- Beetroot hummus
The NHS advises all adults over the age of 40 to have their blood pressure checked at least every five years.
You can get your pressure read either at your GP surgery, some pharmacies, as part of the NHS Health Check, some workplaces or you could even purchase your own at home blood pressure reading to ensure you are always in the know when it comes to high blood pressure.
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