High blood pressure affects one in four adults in the UK, according to figures, but the condition can be difficult to spot because symptoms are rarely noticeable. The best way to find out if you have high blood pressure is to have your reading regularly checked, either by your GP or local pharmacist or using a blood pressure monitor at home. If the condition is left untreated, it can increase a person’s risk of serious problems such as heart attacks and stroke. So what can people do to prevent or reduce high blood pressure?
Gazapacho soup, a classic Spanish soup served cold and made of blended vegetables, has been found to have a positive impact on blood pressure
Eating a healthy diet is one way to achieve this. The NHS advises cutting down not he amount of salt in your food and to eat plenty of fruit and vegetables.
It explains: “Salt raises your blood pressure. The more salt you eat, the higher your blood pressure.
“Aim to eat less than 6g (0.2oz) of salt a day, which is about a teaspoonful.”
Eating a lot-fat diet that includes lots of fibre, such as wholegrain rice, brad and pasta, and plenty of fruit and vegetables, can also help lower blood pressure.
These are general rules to follow, but specific foods have also been found to hold blood pressure lowering properties.
Gazapacho soup, a classic Spanish soup served cold and made of blended vegetables, has been found to have a positive impact on blood pressure.
Research published in the journal Nutrition, Metabolism & Cardiovascular Diseases revealed eating gazpacho soup cold be more beneficial than eating the soup’s ingredient’s alone.
In a statment, resercher Alexander Medina-Remon said: “Previous clinical and epidemiological studies associate the consumption of gazpacho’s main ingredients (tomato, cucumber, garlic, olive oil etc.) with an arterial pressure reduction.
“This new scientific study states for the first time that a regular consumption of gazpacho is as beneficial as the consumption of its ingredients individally, so gazpacho can reduce hypertension.”
The study, published in 2012, looked at the effect of eating gazpacho soup on 3,995 individuals.
This was part of a wider look on the effects of the Mediterranean diet on the population at high risk of cardiovascular diseases.
The researchers found gazpacho consumption reduced the risk of hypertension by 27 per cent in some of the participants taking part in the study.
Medina-Remon explained: “Gazpacho highly contains carotenes, vitamin C and polyphenols.
“The final balance of the bioactive elements of gazpacho and its salt content makes it to be cardio-healthy; in other words, at the end, the positive effects of all the ingredients that contribute to the reduction of arterial pressure prevails over salt’s effects.”
Alongside eating a healthy diet and eating blood pressure lowering foods, regular exercise is important.
Adults should aim to do at least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity aerobic activity, such as cycling or fast walking, every week.
Limiting alcohol intake, losing weight if overweight, stopping smoking and cutting down on caffeine is also recommended.
Another soup which could lower blood sugar is mung bean soup.
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