Olive Oil and Veggies: Natural Ways to Reduce High Blood Pressure
There are many common, and one of the most popular is having high blood pressure. When this happens, the force of blood that pushes against your arteries is higher than it should be, and this can lead to coronary heart disease, stroke, kidney failure, and other cardiovascular and/or health issues.
There are a variety of causes of high blood pressure, but a few of the most common include smoking, being overweight, stress, genetics, too much salt in your diet, lack of exercise, and thyroid disorders.
For most people suffering from high blood pressure, your doctor will likely prescribe you medication to help lower your levels, or they will require you to make some lifestyle changes. Regular exercise and consuming are two of the easiest way to better manage and lower your levels and get down to a healthy range.
Foods that Lower Blood Pressure
In order to lower your blood pressure, it’s a good idea to consume vegetables, low-fat dairy, fruits and foods that are rich in whole grains. It’s also a good idea to avoid foods that are high in saturated fats as well as those that have high sodium levels. Try replacing processed foods with fresh options as well, and avoid eating foods from fast food restaurants as often as you possibly can. These foods contain the wrong type of fat as well as high levels of sodium, which can increase your risk of high blood pressure.
Olive Oil and Vegetables
Studies have recently found that combining olive oil and vegetables is another great food option to help lower your BP levels. These studies have found that the unsaturated fats found in olive oil have a reaction with the compounds found in vegetables, and this creates a third compound that reduces blood pressure levels. Basically, the stomach provides an area in your body where the two items react together and create nitro fatty acids. These acids have been found to keep blood pressure in animals at an optimal level by inhibiting the enzymes that contribute to high blood pressure.
Nitro Fatty Acids
Along with helping to reduce the risk of hypertension, nitro fatty acids have also been found to relax the blood vessels and reduce inflammation, which can also help reduce the risk of high blood pressure as well as other cardiovascular diseases and illnesses. Nitro fatty acids will occur when you consume certain foods, such as spinach, carrots, celery, avocado, and nuts because these foods have a higher amount of nitrates and nitrites than other foods.
The Mediterranean Diet
In order to reap the benefits of olive oil and vegetables, you can either opt to cover your veggies in oil and eat them on their own, or you can switch to the Mediterranean diet. This diet widely recognized for its heart health benefits, as it’s composed of many green, leafy vegetables, oils, and good fats.
Key components of the Mediterranean diet include eating plant-based foods, such as whole grains, fruits, vegetables, legumes, and nuts. This diet also typically replaces any use of butter with olive oil and replacing salt with other herbs and spices. Fish and poultry are typically consumed about twice per week, and red meat is limited to only a few times per month.
To best follow the Mediterranean diet, it’s important to eat about six servings of fruits and/or vegetables every day. Eating whole grain bread is also an important part of the diet, but it’s important to either eat the bread on its own or dip in olive oil instead of using butter. Consuming nuts is also important, but because they are high in calories, the diet recommends no more than one handful of nuts every day. The diet also calls for plain nuts instead of those covered in salt or honey.
If you’re looking to lower your blood pressure, or if you simply want to take better care of your heart, be sure to consume vegetables and olive oil to reap the cardiovascular benefits.