Around 35 million people in Germany suffer from hypertension, according to the German Hypertension League. But medications are not always necessary for the treatment. Some foods can naturally lower blood pressure. Beetroot juice and hibiscus tea are among the best home remedies.
An English study of 14 volunteers showed that drinking half a liter of beetroot juice per day can lower the upper (systolic) blood pressure by about 5 mmHg for about 24 hours. Three to six hours after drinking the juice, the decline was greatest. The effect was repeated in another English study with 34 subjects. After drinking 250 ml of beetroot juice daily for four weeks, their mean values had fallen by 7.7 / 2.4 mmHg.
Beetroot helps thanks to nitrates
The reason for the positive effect on blood pressure: Beetroot juice contains nitrates, which are reduced by our saliva to nitrite, explains Professor Dieter Klaus from the Scientific Advisory Board of the German Heart Foundation. Nitrite dilates the vessels, leading to a drop in blood pressure.
Long-term studies on the effects of beetroot juice on the blood pressure are not known to him, but even with regular consumption he expects no side effects, says the expert. He recommends for a positive effect on the health of the juice as a supplement, but not as the sole therapeutic measure. For the effect is not enough.
Hibiscus tea lowers blood pressure
Hibiscus tea also has a positive effect on blood pressure. According to an American study by Doctor Diane McKay and her team, high blood pressure patients would have to drink three cups of freshly brewed hibiscus tea daily to feel an effect. In the trial participants, the upper value fell on average by 7.2 mmHg.
Blood pressure decreased most sharply in the participants, who had an upper value of 129 mmHg before the trial – namely an average of 13.2 mmHg. The study leader attributes positive effects to the plant dyes, so-called flavonoids, contained in tea. She recommends drinking the tea with milk and no sugar.
Blue potatoes are antihypertensives
That blue potatoes can also help with hypertension was also shown by an American study. Joe Vinson and his team had overweight study participants eat blue potatoes for a month: six to eight small tubers with shell twice a day. The result: The upper blood pressure dropped on average by 3.5 percent, the lower (diastolic) value by 4.3 percent. None of the participants gained weight.
Wholegrain is good for blood pressure
Whole grains also have a positive effect on high blood pressure. Researcher Frank Thies and his team from the University of Aberdeen in Scotland recommend that you consume several portions of whole grains throughout the day. This not only reduces blood pressure, but also the risk of stroke and heart attack by up to 25 percent. Study participants received three servings of oatmeal or other whole grains every day. Otherwise, the participants maintained their normal eating habits. They were able to lower their blood pressure by up to 6 mmHg.
Dark Chocolate preferm
Cocoa and dark chocolate also lower blood pressure. However, you should be careful here with the extra calories that can quickly lead to obesity.
The diet affects the blood pressure
Those who change their diet can reduce their blood pressure on average by up to 11 mmHg systolic and 5.5 mmHg diastolic, according to another study. Just the consumption of more vegetables and East without further changes in the food dropped the values of the participants. This effect was particularly evident when the consumption of fat and meat was reduced at the same time.
Never stop medication on your own
If the diet is successful and your blood pressure drops, be sure to call your doctor. He can adjust the dosage of prescribed medications. Under no circumstances should tablets be reduced by hand or even discontinued, as this can have health consequences.