Expert warns of foods that should be avoided if you have high blood pressure

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Professor Gerald Carr-White, a consultant cardiologist at London Bridge Hospital, London, spoke exclusively to to warn of the foods you should avoid if you have high blood pressure.

“Breakfasts high in salt, including highly processed meats such as bacon and sausages should be avoided,” said Professor Carr-White.

“This is because salt is known as a significant factor in increasing high blood pressure, and should be reduced for anyone diagnosed with hypertension.”

As for lunchtime, “a meal such as a ham and cheese white bread sandwich with crisps should be avoided”.

Dr Carr-White explained: “All components of this meal are high in salt.”

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When it comes to dinner, he warned that “fish and chips, pizza and ready meals are all high in salt”.

Dr Carr-White added: “For many people, high blood pressure doesn’t have any symptoms, but it does increase your risk of heart attacks and strokes.

“This is why it is important to live a healthy life with exercise and a balanced diet, to help prevent high blood pressure from occurring.”

If you would like to know your blood pressure reading, Dr Carr-White is in favour of at-home blood pressure monitoring kits.

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Dr Carr-White said they can be “very useful as they get rid of the white coat element often seen in GP centres and hospitals”.

He is referencing the likelihood to feel a bit stressed at the doctor’s clinic inadvertently increasing your blood pressure reading.

Dr Carr-White added: “If your doctor recommends you to get a blood pressure monitor kit, you should buy the one that they suggest.

“And still visit your GP for blood pressure checks to ensure the accuracy of your own kit.”

How to reduce your blood pressure reading

If your blood pressure is too high, Dr Carr-White shared his expertise on how to lower your reading.

“Reducing the amount of salt in your diet is very important, and is a very easy thing to do,” he said.

A healthy diet includes:

  • Citrus fruits
  • Leafy greens
  • Wholegrains
  • Fibrous foods.

Dr Carr-White said: “And increasing your daily exercise, even just to 30 minutes of walking a day, is a great way to improve your fitness while reducing your blood pressure.”

Professor Gerald Carr-White is the Consultant Cardiologist at The Cardiac Clinic, London Bridge Hospital, part of HCA Healthcare UK.

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