Hypertension, also known as high blood pressure is a disease that affects many people. There have even been increased cases in children and teenagers as more and more people become obese. The three most common contributors to this disease are being overweight, consuming large amounts of sodium and consuming large amounts of foods high in saturated and trans fats. Making a healthy change to your diet is one of the biggest changes you can make to lower your high blood pressure.
The first place to start is by going through your current foods stored in your cupboards, refrigerator and freezer. Read the nutritional labels on each and every product. Anything that has excessive amounts of sodium in it, you should toss out. The recommended daily intake of sodium is 2000 mg. Anything that has excessive amounts of saturated fats or trans fats, should also be tossed. As a general rule of thumb with fats, if it has more than 10% of the recommended daily dosage, get rid of it.
You should be eating at least three small meals and two snacks per day. This might seem like a lot of food, especially if you were used to overeating large portions. Purchase a set of measuring cups and spoons if you do not have these in your home. You will need these for portion control. Learning to adjust your meals to what is considered normal portions will also help you lose weight. It is a good idea to get a small notebook, too. What you will need the notebook for is to keep track of everything you eat. This will help you keep track of what you have eaten for the day.
Most people will cut calories when dieting. This is not our focus. Rather we want to focus on sodium, saturated fats and trans fats consumed since these all cause hypertension. Focus on portion control and measure out the serving size that is listed on the nutritional label.
If you are working with fresh fruits, vegetables and lean cuts of meat, then you still need to use portion control. Use up to a cup of the fresh vegetables or fruit. With meat, your portion size should be three to four ounces per serving.
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