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Aug 20, 2012 08:24 AM

Blood pressure friendly recipes

Are there any recipes out there specifically designed to help people lower their blood pressure?

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  1. I don't know about recipes, but foods (fish, meat, many veggies) rich in potassium and magnesium and low in sugars are what work for me... you can check lists online of high K and Mg foods and just skip over the high sugar ones like oranges, bananas, potatoes. Works for me.

    1. Cold water fish for sure. Salmon is your friend, but fish in general is fab. Watch your sodium--don't eliminate it, but watch the sodium content of any prepared foods you buy. It's sneaky. Seasoning food is one thing, but buying gobs of it already in a sauce (for ex) and then seasoning is another. Adding fresh garlic and spices like turmeric and cinnamon seems to help, too...I also would get a home BP monitor, and use it.

      7 Replies
      1. re: pinehurst

        I always eat some salt when my bp rises, it helps to lower it by opening up the channels that deliver potassium.

        1. re: mcf

          That's a good point. When my DH was in hospital this past summer, the hospitalist cardiologist urged him to *not* eliminate salt, esp. sea salt from his diet. She did warn about the dangers of processed foods (most of 'em, anyway), that are filled with sugars, sodium, etc. She also talked about the use of spices to enhance flavor as well as health. Interestingly, she was a doctor newly arrived to the US from as a whip, lovely bedside manner, and clearly not the norm pop-a-pill type.

          1. re: pinehurst

            She sure sounds smarter than the average nincompoop doctor!

            1. re: pinehurst

              Damn.... pretty impressed with said Dr.

              1. re: kubasd

                Roger that, kubasd, so was I. I was so sad to hear she was a hospitalist and didn't have a private practice. If she ever does, I (and DH) am so there. And her bedside manner/warmth? Superb.

                1. re: pinehurst

                  Very rare, sadly. I'm only 28 but have seen my fair share of doctors, and it is ridiculous when I know more about foods and health/nutrition than them....

                  1. re: kubasd

                    May you have decades of health, kubasd. You're right, though...the old model of docs being the font of all knowledge which they bestowed on their simpleton patients is changing, but slowly. You're more advanced than I am and I'm a decade (and then some) older than you are...I totally bought the "oh if it's whole grain everyone can eat it and should eat mostly that" thing until this July, when my DH proved my theory very, very wrong. So, live and learn. :-)

        2. If I eat a load of salt I can stand there and watch my BP go up so I am inclined to say, cool it with the salt. The two most useful suggestions I can make are a) lemon juice improves just about everything and b) Trader Joe's has a very low-sodium marinara sauce, something like 30 mgm of Na compared with 400-700 mgm in name brands---read label to make sure you've picked up the right one as labels look similar---very tomato-y and has many applications. And of course pretty much forget about processed foods, frozen dinners, lunchmeat etc. BTW a nutritionist is not the same as a dietitian. Anybody can call him- or herself a nutritionist---a registered dietitian has to meet standards for education, exams etc. And in a quarter-century of cooking for my heart patient husband we never found an MD who knew squat about diet. If you need a consult, find a registered dietitian. But you can educate yourself a lot.

          1 Reply
          1. re: Querencia

            Dietitians are the folks who tell diabetics to eat mostly carbs. As for salt, it lowers my bp, and raises yours, so I think each person has to find out what works for him or herself. Only about 20% of folks with ht, at most, are salt sensitive, and studies find the highest mortality among those who are the most restrictive in terms of salt consumption.

          2. Small note to this....part of my DH's problem with BP stemmed from the fact that he used to have REALLY low blood levels of magnesium and potassium. We sprinkle pumpkin seeds on salads now (good source of both) and are upping our eggplant, artichokes, things like that. It's helping.

            1 Reply
            1. re: pinehurst

              I take SloMag and K Dur... though low carbing dropped my bp like a rock, too. So much so that at first, I had really bad orthostatic hypotension, til my body adjusted. Morton blended lite salt with or without SloMag can help a lot.